Where to find creatives for your custom merch

There are a number of important factors that go into nailing the look and feel of a piece of custom merchandise – label, fabric, printing method, garment type – but the cornerstone of each of these is the graphic design. The standout feature that people will pay most attention to is what is actually on the garment, and t-shirt graphic design is a competitive field to stand out in.

If you’re not a designer yourself, and you don’t have anyone skilled on your team either, then you will no doubt be looking to hire someone externally to help realise your vision. The pool of freelance graphic designers is overwhelmingly large, so here’s some suggestions for where to start looking for the graphic designer of your dreams.

It’s Nice That

Much more than just a website, It’s Nice That is a multi-platform celebration of creatives across all industries. Dedicated to tracking down the most interesting people working across a number of fields, the It’s Nice That website is one of the best places to discover new people to collaborate with. Their graphic design section is extensive, and their yearly graduate spotlight is always on the money. 

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Weekly comic 110 by @Oook_bai ∙ In honour of International Women’s Day this week, Haein is here to remind us of the strength we hold and the love we deserve. ∙ Swipe for a smile! #itsnicethat #INTWeeklyComic

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D&AD New Blood

The D&AD awards are one of the most respected design awards in the world, and looking through each year’s nominees and winners can be a great way to find new talent. Even more exciting is their New Blood initiative, which is aimed at recent graduates and designers at the start of their career. If you are looking to work with someone at a more affordable rate, who is nonetheless full of passion, this is a great place to start.

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THERE'S TWO WEEK TO GO FOR THE #NEWBLOODAWARDS DEADLINE. But why panic? That's plenty of time to turn around Pencil-worthy work. Download the briefs, and welcome the pressure. Link in bio.

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99 Designs

If you don’t feel ready to commit to one designer before seeing a few responses to your idea, then 99 Designs can help. Acting as a middle man, 99 Designs either select a designer they think best fits your need, or they share your request with their entire pool of designers. Anyone who wants to will then submit their interpretation for you to choose from, giving you the chance to choose from a huge array of designs without having to pay numerous designers.

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The 2020 #99awards results are in! ⁣⁠⠀⁠⠀ ⁣⁠⠀⁠⠀ Congratulations to hortasar for winning Best Typography Design for his bold book cover design. ⁣⁠⠀⁠⠀ ⁣⁠⠀⁠⠀ —⁣⁠⠀⁠⠀ ⁠⠀⁠⠀ Jury panelist @willpat explains:⁣⁠⠀⁠⠀ ⁣⁠⠀⁠⠀ "I love the composition and illustration of this design. The lettering style fits seamlessly with the illustration and the use of colors fits so well."⁣⁠⠀⁠⠀ ⁣⁠⠀⁠⠀ Thanks again to everyone that participated in this year's 99awards celebration!⁠⠀ ⁣⁠⠀⁠⠀ ⁣⁠⠀⁠⠀ ⁣⁠⠀⁠⠀ ⁣⁠⠀⁠⠀ ⁣⁠⠀⁠⠀ ⁣⁠⠀⁠⠀ ⁣⁠⠀⁠⠀ #99designs #book #bookcover #graphicdesign #typography #design #graphicdesigner #type #lettering #goodtype #typematters #typographyinspired

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Eye on Design

Eye on Design is the print an digital publication from the AIGA, the professional association for design, which is America’s oldest and largest design operation. A platform for designers by designers, the website and magazine are a non-stop stream of quality designers of every kind. 

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Going beyond the “Big Five” ✋ ✋ ✋ In a feature from #EyeOnDesignMag, we explore the women who helped solidify the psychedelic graphic style of the ’60s and ’70s. Read the colorful story on Eye on Design—link in profile. #WomensMonth #WomensHistoryMonth #IWD⁠⠀ .⁠⠀ .⁠⠀ .⁠⠀ #eyeondesign #aigadesign #aigaeyeondesign #graphicdesign #posterdesign #posters

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Fiverr is another freelancer marketplace, offering up thousands of designers for you to choose from. With the option to filter by cost, delivery time, language and experience, Fiverr makes it easy to find a designer who is best suited to your needs. Another benefit of the platform is that it makes reviews public, which takes the guesswork out of knowing if designers are reliable and easy to work with.

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Have any events coming up and need a really impressive poster? We got you. We challenged @ellenasm to make a poster with this month's color palette for our monthly #colorpalettechallenge. ⁠ ⁠ Click the link in our bio to check her out on Fiverr now!

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There is no bigger champion of graphic designers than other graphic designers, and the Mirador blog is a great example of this. Run by a Parisian graphic design company, this blog is the repository for all of their research and ‘image hunting’. Take advantage of this expertly curated feed and dive in for some research of your own.

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🔮 Filippos Fragkogiannis, a graphic designer based in Athens, Greece. @filipposfragkogiannis #huntedbymirador #graphicdesign #artdirection #branding

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Aisle One

If typography is your main focus, then Aisle One is a great resource. A love letter to design, typography, minimalism and modernism, this small blog is a treasure trove of beautiful, dynamic designs and ideas. 

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. Designer: Jacqueline S. Casey . 👈🏻 Swipe for more. . #graphicdesign #jacquelinecasey #identitydesign #printdesign #typography #internationaltypographicstyle #swissstyle #bauhaus #bauhausdesign #minimalism #modernism #typeface #aisleone #packagingdesign #visualidentity #editorialdesign #typographic #typo #posterdesign #typographicdesign #graphicart #artdirection #swissdesign #swissgraphicdesign #swisstypography #typographer #grotesk #typographie #plakat #affiche

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Another hiring platform that promises to connect you to the best freelancers for your need, Upwork take the size of your business into account when combing trough their database. This means you are only presented with designers who have the right price and availability for the stage you’re at.

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This is how the magic happens. . . . . #leadership #leadershipquote #teamwork #team #businessquote

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Want to create custom merch for your business? ICON Printing offer fast turnaround printing on a range of garments, counting a number of clients in the coffee trade, as well as clients ranging from such as WeWork to Boiler Room and the Tate. Get a quote in 2 minutes online.