Design file tips & best practices

As you develop your design keep in mind high-quality PNG files with a transparent background (see example below) are the preferred design file type when using the Teespring Designer. Also, if you add a design on the front and back of the products this will increase their base cost; to minimize base cost and maximize profit keep your design on one side of the products only.

Example of a PNG file with transparent background


Uploading your design to the Teespring Designer

EPS If you have an EPS file, upload away! The only restriction when it comes to EPS files is if you have a full color design (10+ colors); for full color designs we ask for it to be a fully vectored only image. Sometimes, especially if you’re converting an image, it will contain embedded rasters even though it is an EPS file. EPS files with embedded rasters will get rejected upon upload.

PNG/JPEG/JPG If you have any of these file types, the Teespring Designer requires that your artwork meet a minimum threshold for high quality. For US campaigns, this means that the image should have at least 120 DPI at the scale of print. And for EU campaigns, this means that the image should have at least 300 DPI at the scale of print. Also, ideally the design size should be near 3000×3000 pixels.

This is how a PNG file with a transparent background will appear in the Teespring Designer. Notice the DPI.

Photographs design tips

  • Artwork dimensions: For photographs it’s best to upload high-resolution images that are close to the print specifications – e.g., If printing at 11″ x 8″ tall, an 11″ x 8″ image at 300 DPI is best.  Any scaling-up of lower resolution images can lead to reduced print quality.
  • Color system: We use an RGB workflow.  Our DTG machines print Red and Green, as well as the traditional CMYK, which allows for a larger color gamut.
  • File formats: We recommend hi-resolution PNGs with transparent backgrounds, although JPGs are also accepted—PNGs with transparent backgrounds are the preferred file format.

Things to keep in mind

What is DPI?

DPI stands for dots per inch and refers to the physical dot density of an image when it is reproduced as a real physical entity (e.g. on a shirt). Monitors do not have dots, but do have pixels so a closely related concept is PPI or pixels per inch.

In order to ensure a high-quality print, Teespring requires your design to meet a minimum DPI threshold. As you adjust your image in Step 1 of the Teespring Designer, you’ll see visual cues notifying you what DPI your image currently is (as shown in screenshot above).

What happens if my image doesn’t meet the minimum DPI requirement?

If your image doesn’t meet the minimum DPI requirement, we prevent you from continuing to Step 2 in the Composer. There are 2 things you can do:

  1. You can resize your image (smaller) until it hits the minimum DPI threshold
  2. You can upload a higher resolution image

My design file is too big when I try to meet the minimum DPI requirement…

If you’re having trouble staying under the 10MB limit and meeting the DPI requirements in the Teespring Designer there are a few things you can try:

  1. Within your design software, resize the design to match the artboard size of 11.7″x17.9″ (3570 x 5370px) and export/save it as a PNG.
  2. In photoshop, use ‘change image size’ option to get your design to at least 3570 x 5370px and then export/save it as a PNG.
  3. Keep in mind you may have to resize the design once it’s uploaded to the Teespring Designer; sometimes by adjusting the design to a slightly smaller size you can raise the DPI.

What design file do I need in order to set my target sale to 1?

We strongly encourage sellers to set their “target sale” to 1. If your campaign target is 1 this means you will only need to sell 1 product for the campaign to become successful (i.e. the order goes to print and you make a profit). Depending on the fulfillment region of the campaign (EU or US) you may see different design file requirements.

  • US Fulfilment: EPS files and PNG/JPEG/JPG/GIF with a minimum DPI of 120
  • EU Fulfilment: EPS files and PNG with a minimum DPI of 300