My First T-Shirt Designs

​Here are my first attempts at t-shirt design. They might not be great but they taught me a lot about using Photoshop to create designs that meet the requirements of the marketing platforms.

​The First Two T-Shirts I Made

​I used my own hobbies of aviation and genealogy to create my first two t-shirt designs. These went pretty slow because I had to learn everything about the mechanics of designing shirts for Merch by Amazon. The required size (4500 X 5400 pixels), resolution (300 dpi), colors, fonts, where to get artwork I can reuse commercially - it was all new to me. I plunged in, did my research and came up with these. I kind of like them!

I Collect Dead Relatives
Altitude Adjustment

​Deleted from Amazon - Now on Redbubble

​I did versions of each for both light and dark shirts. That taught me something else too. Each version or product type uses one slot in your Merch tier. So these two shirts used four slots. That doesn't mean we are limited to one color, just to one design. We get to pick five colors for each design. For the dark shirts that might be black, olive, cranberry, navy, etc. The light ones might be blue, pink, white, grey or whatever.

​The Planet Earth Shirt

​The next shirt I designed was inspired by artwork I saw while researching free graphic sites. I like this image of Earth so I placed it on a tee with my own text. Again I did light and dark versions so used two more slots.

Home Sweet Planet Light
Home Sweet Planet Dark

​Just 4 Slots To Go

​Because I used slots for light and dark shirts, I was now down to just four slots left on Merch. I ​did one design for light colors and one for dark. 

​Inspiration for the first grade shirt came from our grandson. He is in Kindergarten and will be moving into first grade next fall. He also like to play video games.

The Wisconsin t-shirt came me during a short road trip we took to that state.

First Grade
Wisconsin Northwoods

​Deleted from Amazon - Now on ​Redbubble

​Just two slots left now. By this time I was learning more about finding niches that sell so I tried experimenting. Food seems to be a popular nich and narrowing it down, pizza and bacon are good narrow niches. The first shirt uses both foods while the second is just pizza. I also saw a video about how text only t-shirts sell well so these don't have images. I did use color in the second one though.

Bacon Pizza

​Deleted from Amazon - Now on ​Redbubble

Birthday Pizza

​Deleted from Amazon - ​Now on Redbubble

​Slots Full!

​So, those are my current designs on Amazon. I am hoping to see some sales during the month of April. I might end up deleting some of these and replacing them with others if sales aren't coming in after a reasonable time. When that happens, I will try to update this page. Look for notes under the images.

You can click on any shirt shown in this post to see it on Amazon (if it is still there) or go to to see the current ones I have on there.

Many of the articles and videos I have seen say I should buy my own shirts to get out of the 10 tier. I would rather not do that but if I go too long without a sale I might have to. I did buy two of the shirts in my Grandson's size but I wanted those anyway. They were the First Grade one and the Home Sweet Planet shirt.​ I ​will also able to see the quality of the product by buying these. (update - the quality is actually very good)

I hope the other eight sales will come from people who like the designs. If I buy them it wont tell me anything about what ​shoppers like.

I haven't stopped designing shirts - I just can't put anymore on Merch. I am uploading designs to Teespring and I will show some of those in later posts,