Where can I make my own clothes?
October 4, 2005 12:15 AM   Subscribe

I want to make my own clothing. I want to upload a design to a website, and get a shirt/sweater/jacket/whatever. The two sites I know are cafepress and spreadshirt. Does anyone have any experience with this? I'd like it to be fairly inexpensive or at least have the quality be equivalent to cost. What other sites are there besides cafepress and spreadshirt? Is it worth it?
posted by petah to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (9 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Neighborhoodies.com has good stuff, great quality, friendly staff, and not too expensive. Also they'll put whatever you damn well please on your clothes.
posted by anarcation at 12:17 AM on October 4, 2005

posted by Gyan at 12:49 AM on October 4, 2005

If you're looking for high-quality sceenprinted shirts, One Off is worth a look.
posted by cali at 12:50 AM on October 4, 2005

Second Neighborhoodies. They really will put absolutely anything on your shirt, as long as you ask for it (and can pay). Also, their t-shirts are really good quality - good thickness, lovely cotton, great necklines. Can't recommend them highly enough.
posted by pollystark at 2:23 AM on October 4, 2005

I've had mixed results with 99dogs, but they can do a lot of stuff Cafepress can't (e.g. print on dark shirts).

If you are explicit in the comment section of your order, I've found that they are pretty good.
posted by etc. at 7:00 AM on October 4, 2005

I'm going to second cali's recommendation for Oneoff Clothing. They do an outstanding job and it only costs a bit more per shirt than CafePress.
posted by boogah at 8:38 AM on October 4, 2005

How complicated are the designs we're talking about? You could always look into things like Gocco printers or easy screenprinting, if you're so inclined.
posted by Vervain at 11:07 AM on October 4, 2005

Silkscreening things yourself isn't all that cost- [or time-] effective. It's a lot of fun, and if you're interested in it for the art, it's a great thing to do, but if petah wants to make many shirts, wants to make shirts with designs that have multiple colors [which'll need to be carefully aligned], or wants to make designs on dark shirts [which'll need a layer of white printed underneath to make the colors visible], it can be a pretty huge enterprise.

Furthermore, the things Vervain links to don't look like good ways to go about making shirts at home. At least based on the website, the dimensions for the silkscreen Gocco gadget are still smaller than many T-shirt designs, and it looks like it's not very well set-up for doing shirts. You'll still have to ink every single shirt yourself, too. [Couldn't find a cost, but I'm sure it's way more than either home silkscreening stuff or buying stuff online.] The home screenprinting process described on the second link looks rather painful - trace the image by hand, paint around it with glue, etc? You'll get better results with even the cheapest photoemulsion kit, and using a squeegee to get the ink on will give you a much more even look, way closer to professional. Use a big rectangular screen with hinges, and you can do more complex multi-color things and register everything better. As long as you don't let ink dry on the screen, you can reuse the screen for a bunch of other posters or fabric pieces before having to replace the fabric. You will have to fork over a bunch of money to get this sort of stuff set up, though, and it will take a bunch of experimenting before things look right. Unless you're interested in silkscreening in its own right, buying at the sites above is gonna be easier and cheaper.
posted by ubersturm at 1:41 PM on October 4, 2005

Response by poster: The designs will vary in complication, I was thinking designs with 1-2 colors that I would upload in psd/jpg format.

And for the most part I would print 1-3 tops.

Thanks for the recommendations so far, any others that I should try out?
posted by petah at 8:07 PM on October 4, 2005

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