How to Order T-Shirts

Ordering t-shirts and estimating t-shirt quantities can be scary. Especially scary if this is the first time you have ever ordered custom shirts. With a little time we can show you how to order t-shirts and eliminate the stress. It would be great if you knew ahead of time exactly how many shirts and what sizes before your event, camp, or retreat; however, this is the real world and usually we don’t have any of that information beforehand.

How to order custom t-shirt sizes and quantities:

  1. Estimate the total number of shirts you will need.  Do you need 45 shirts or 450 shirts?  You may already know exactly how many shirts you need or you may need to guess.  Lets say you decide on 46 t-shirts.  That’s okay for now. On to step 2…
  2. Ask about quantity discounts.  Many t-shirt printers have discounted price breaks at 50, 75, 100, and higher. Sometimes ordering more shirts can save you money. In our example in step 1, it will save us money to order 50 shirts instead of 46. Effectively giving us 4 extra shirts for free.  Okay, on to step 3…
  3. What are the most popular t-shirt sizes?  It depends on the age of the group. Are they children, adults, youth, or a combination of all three.  If you wear an XL don’t fall into the trap of thinking that is the most common size just because that is what you wear.  Usually groups with all adults, the most common size is Large, but be careful. It can vary based or region or the mix of women vs men.  In our example earlier – we want 50 shirts with size Large as the most common size. 
  4. The “Bell Curve”  Begin your curve with the most common size, Large. Lets start with 16 L.  Then on either side of that a few less 11 M, and 11 XL.  Then going out further 5 S, and 5 XXL.  And lastly 1 XS, and 1 XXXL.  Using this method you can see how the diagram below works. And it does. Sometimes we encourage our customers to go a little heaver on one side than the other, but that is step 5…
  5. By skewing the sizes slightly larger the curve changes shape. Isn’t it easier to fit someone in a larger shirt than it is to fit someone is a smaller shirt?
  6. Once you have the sizes generalized it’s a good idea to make some changes based on things you know about your group. Make sure you get a 4XL for Uncle John, or the Extra Small for your staff person’s 6 year old who everyone knows is coming (you better not forget her!).

That’s it! You know how to order t-shirts. If you still have questions or you need some more help please don’t hesitate to give us a call or send us an email.