My T Shirt Design Process

You may have noticed that t shirts are a passion of mine. I love and collect so many graphic tees that I eventually made this a part of my design business. So, would you like to learn more about my t shirt design process?

Let’s talk.

But First, Coffee

Obviously, my t shirt design process starts with coffee. I mean, doesn’t everything?

But First Coffee Graphic Tee with Sunburst pattern

All joking aside, it is my passion for good coffee that inspired most of these designs I’ve created. My passion for good coffee started when I lived in Vienna, Austria, one of the great coffee cities of the world. There was something about that — not just the coffee by the whole vibe — that inspired my imagination.

Next, I take up my sketchbook and pencil to rough out some ideas I’m having.

First I Drink the Coffee Then I do the Things

Most of the coffee quotes and sayings I’m designing around have been done many times before. I actually started out my t shirt design process by creating the different coffee themed graphics and coffee vectors I’d use in my t shirt designs.

Graphic Tee First I drink the coffee then I do the things Badge Style T shirt design

I sketched out the different coffee tools and accessories I have in my own kitchen, using those as inspiration. Then I imported them into Adobe Illustrator. I did this by taking a picture with my smartphone, then placing that image into Adobe Illustrator.

After I had some good basics created, I started looking at what sorts of designs people like you are looking for. There’s no point in making something if no one wants it, right?

So I do a little research on Zazzle to see what I can do better, and what needs I might meet.

The Final Step in My T Shirt Design Process

Finally, it’s time to take on the world.

With Enough Coffee, I could Rule the World Heraldic Style Graphic Tee White on Dark

I use the artwork I’ve created and the inspiration I’ve gained to create designs that fit into the specs Zazzle has. I work with the designs until I have them just the way I like them, before uploading them to Zazzle, creating my products for you to buy.

You can find Coffee themed graphic tees and more in my Ode to Coffee Store in the Zazzle Marketplace


How to Order T-shirts from Zazzle

When ordering any graphic tee from my Zazzle store, you are in complete control.


If you want to add some sort of personalized customization (your name, your organization, your event, for example), you can do this easily with all of the t-shirts on Zazzle. Just click the “customize it” button on the listing page, and add the text of your choice.

If you need some more intense customizing than possible in the Zazzle store, let me know. I can edit and customize my designs for you if you need me to. I’m happy to help.

Styles and Colors

Zazzle also lets you pick out what style of t-shirt you want my designs printed on. There are dozens of styles available beyond the simple basic t-shirt. Most of my graphic tee listings show my designs on a basic t-shirt, although I do like to play around with other styles.  Most of the time, I love my t-shirts in a basic heather gray color too, but you can pick from a variety of t-shirt colors.

First I drink the coffee then I do the things badge style graphic tee

Note this won’t change the color of the design printed on the t-shirt. My designs were created with set colors I thought worked well with the design. However, if you’d like to see a particular design printed in a different color, do let me know, and I’ll see if I can add it. Feedback from fellow graphic tee fashionistas and coffee lovers helps me know what everyone loves and is looking for.

Sales and Coupons

Finally, we all love a great deal, I’m sure. You can usually find some kind of coupon code for Zazzle at the top of each page on Zazzle. I also try to list the current deals at Zazzle on the Ode to Coffee Facebook Page. Every little bit helps, right?

But first Coffee Graphic Tee with starburst pattern

With Enough Coffee, I could Rule the World Heraldic Style Graphic Tee White on Dark