Can you give me a ballpark price? It’s a confusing feeling I have when someone wants screen-printed shirts and the first thing they say is; Can you give me a ballpark price? Well “no” is my desired response, but “I believe I can hit it into center field!” Consider comfort and quality in your garments first.
• Comfort – Hitting it out of the park
It is a far too shallow question for the buyer that truly wants a good deal. I can tell you what you want to hear, but there are some things we should know first. Firstly we need to know what kind of quality you are looking for in a shirt. “Can you give me a ballpark price?” feels like it’s saying give me the cheapest deal you can give me. I can do that but you won’t be happy with cardboard shirts that cost $3 each and it’ll be lucky to have lasting value to them, not to mention that they may shrink beyond wearability from the bottom up (reminiscent of some past bootleg shirts I’ve purchased in the parking lots of classic rock concerts in the past). They look great until they’re washed. Then they shrink down to unwearable sizing. Needless to say, I didn’t keep these around for long and didn’t get much use out of them aside from the possible ‘wear it at the show and on the way home. I don’t think you want that. So let’s first get to know a few brands and the quality you might be looking for. We’re not rounding third just yet.
• Fit – There could be some shrinkage.
We can start at the economy vs. comfort. So we can start with Gildan brand shirts. The Dry Blend 50/50 will hold up pretty well. But the comfort is kind of so-so though it is very wearable and not uncomfortable. It’s a traditional, nothing fancy but good tee that’ll last for a good and livable price for what it is. But if you want that extra comfort with a lesser price tag you can go with the ‘Gildan Softstyle’. But with that thought in mind remember this is 100% cotton (not ring-spun cotton, which holds up well without much notice of any shrinkage). As wonderfully soft-feely as it is, there is some shrinkage. So you may get around that by sizing it up one. Like if you want Large buy XL. I’ve worn these shirts and they are comfortable and incredibly soft. What I do is simply stretch it out after it’s washed, just before I put it on. Works for me.
On the other hand, please don’t assume 100% Cotton means it will shrink up. In walks ‘Airlume combed & ringspun cotton’ to the rescue. Click here for a story on that at Bella+Canvas
• Style – If you want a more modern style cut shirt with a quality brand that includes a high comfort level I would suggest the Next Level or Bella+Canvas brands. For just a couple of bucks more per shirt you’ll get the quality worth paying for without the shrinkage or cardboard feel. These shirts are made for the modern t-shirt wearer and have high appeal to the young crowd. When considering these brands keep in mind the weight factor involved. Every shirt on the market has a weight for example the Bella+Canvas Unisex CVC Jersey Tee (3001) is 4.2 oz./yd². Which is about average for this brand. Kind of a medium-weight shirt that is Airlume 100% ring-spun cotton. There are lighter-weight t-shirts, especially in Women’s cuts, but they tend to be more transparent. A Hanes ‘Beefy-T’ on the other hand is a 6.1 oz./yd². And truly a heavyweight t-shirt.
So when you want to be happy with the outcome of your design on the right shirt and hit it out of the park, try to avoid the question; “Can you give me a ballpark price?” Instead, investigate comfort and quality first. These are some important things to consider and needed to know before buying custom t-shirts. Dr. Tee’s can provide the answers to your questions.