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  • February 19, 2017

    First Product of 2017 – Custom Aprons

    Introducing: Custom Aprons

    Aprons align perfectly with the the sort of customer we love — the creative who needs more than two hands at once and isn’t afraid to get a little dirty. So with the idea of custom aprons that came with as many pockets you want, in whatever style we figured we’d kill two birds with one stone.

    Then we couldn’t help but take “custom” further.

    For something we use so often, “custom aprons” should mean that you can choose the length of the straps, the exact depth of the pockets. The type of fabric should be changeable, too — heavy cloth didn’t suit some applications like serving, but thin cotton at the grill meant it was you who was getting roasted. And for that matter, lengths should be up for grabs, too — a waiter and an artist need entirely different sizes and cuts. 

    women_rollerskating_wearing_apron_to_serve_food artist_wearing_apron

    “I need a way different apron than she does.” – Jackson Pollock

    Aprons have us excited, and that’s why we invested a few months really stretching our factories so that today, you can make any apron your job demanded. And as per usual, we’re offering outrageous screenprinting, professional embroidery or a mixture of both. That’s the freedom needed to create gems like an apron festooned with steak chenille patches (check it at the bottom of the aprons home page).

    So go ahead, cut loose a little and deck out your catering squad, your cook-off competition or your clay class with custom aprons. Request a quote today and enjoy free 30% increase in order quantity. Order up!

     

     

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  • 5 Mistakes Brands Make
    February 13, 2017

    5 Mistakes Brands Make

    A brand is like a person — and just as likely to sometimes do something so facepalm-worthy you wonder if anyone is actually sitting at the wheel. Here are a few of our favorites.

    #1 Being “good enough”

    When you step back and look at your brand, you should feel proud of yourself. If it’s missing something, don’t send it to factory just yet. If you wouldn’t want to buy your product, your ideal customer — who should somewhat resemble you — won’t either. 

    runway_fashion_show

    We’re pretty sure the designer said “Meh, it’s 5PM on a Friday… this is done.” 

    This doesn’t mean you have to go in alone, though. Professional designers aren’t cheap but they’re excellent at interpreting ideas and turning them into the visual. They’re also free with every The/Studio order. That’s a couple hundred dollars in the bank. 

    #2 Not Having Trim

    Looking to sell your gear in person at events? Don’t be the guy with a bunch of t-shirts that look fresh from that t-shirt presser kiosk in the mall. Trim tells customers that you put time and effort into your brand – and that the price tag is worth it (Not sure what “trim” is? Here’s a quick list of other items that count as trim).

    Trim isn’t free, but we think “it’s too expensive!” is a rumor started by folks who have already discovered how powerful trim can be as a seller. Ask one of our agents about trim pricing and you’ll be surprised how affordable upgrading can be.

    tshirt_kiosk

    Time to retire your old factory.

    #3 Right Apparel, Wrong Season

    T-shirts are great, don’t get us wrong. But some brands seem to operate on the assumption that we all live in Los Angeles. Seasonal fashion is the oldest rule in the book, but some brands don’t realize that they they can do more than summer fashion.

    man_wearing_shorts_in_the_snow

    At least he’s … cool? 

    Don’t be boxed in by So-Cal temperatures. The/Studio does long-sleeve t-shirts, knit socks, scarves and beanies so your customers don’t have to go without half the year. And for this springtime and summer, we make sleeveless tees, polos and flip-flops. Maybe help your customers crack a cold one with custom-cast bottle opener dog tags — and keep it cold with branded coolers.

    To assure timely delivery, we recommend starting your order a full month before the first day of the season — but we’ve been known to make short work of rush jobs before.

    #4 Too Much Brand

    evolution_of_ralph_lauren

    We’re all for an increased brand presence through subtle things like woven labels or well-designed hang tags — but when your appliqué makes it hard for wearers to even move, we think you need to reconsider that chest-sized logo. Our designers will let you know if any design elements might cause some discomfort, visual or otherwise.

    #5 Not Shopping Around Before Agreeing to a Quote

    monoply_man

    At the end of the day, manufacturers (and especially custom manufacturers) are businesses, too. They drop a quote on you and pressure you to pay because they know your order is something near and dear to you. You don’t want it to get messed up, sent late or done wrong. Translation: you may be willing to your willingness to pay a higher price than might be justified.

    Until you pay an invoice, you command all the chips. Manufacturers are eager to get your business and will likely go nudge prices down and bump completion dates forward if it means you’ll say yes, so set that bar high — you might be surprised to what extent your order can be done cheaper and faster than one person will tell you. But don’t be surprised when The/Studio comes out ahead as the cheapest and fastest option — with our free design, enhanced manufacturing techniques and free shipping, we cut to the chase and give you the best deal possible.

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    Not sure whether you’re ready to pull the trigger on your brand? No need to worry, and no need to commit to working with us just yet. Our free designers can help tidy up your logo and make suggestions as to what trim will work best with your apparel (and we can help make that, too, if you’ve already got the apparel taken care of).

     

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  • February 8, 2017

    11½ Ways to Build a Better T-shirt

    So — you’re looking to make a batch of custom t-shirts for either a brand or a business. Don’t swallow the lie that screenprinting is the only affordable customization route. What you can’t afford is to not be noticed.

    But in a world dominated by branded threads, $80 “fashion T”s and mass-produced T-shirt campaigns, it’s hard to standout without putting your cost estimations out to dry. TeeSpring, CaféPress, the local print shop? They let you “stand out” by giving you free or low-cost screen-printing — in a market full of millions of other people with the same thing.

    Dieting

    Great ideas just aren’t enough anymore.

    Take hope, t-shirt designer-to-be. Here’s eleven (and a half) custom modifications that used to be “for big brands only” — until we put them in everyone’s design-the-ultimate-T-shirt toolbox.

    Printing Methods

    Sure, we do screen printing. Better and cheaper than the other guys — and with multiple colors and printing locations (and better customer service). If your design is simple but breaks TeeSpring’s 9×9 inch “printable area” rule, We’ll be happy to take a look.

    But dare to be bold with the vivid detail of direct-to-garment print — a souped-up fabric printer leading to ultimate detail, precision and color that’s affordable at even low quantities. And if you’ve got a bold design, try the simulated process print, a version of screen printing that uses more opaque, intense colors that work great on black cloth.

    t-shirt_printing_methods

    Trim

    Spent more than ten hours developing your brand? You owe it to yourself to make the small investment of trim on your t-shirts. Woven labels with your brand logo, care and size labels tailored specifically to your fabric and custom hangtags to swing in the sale floor breeze — these things say that your brand has arrived. And that you can justify fashion-quality prices. 

    hang_tag_for_t-shirts

    They say you can’t print money but… you can. 

    Patches

    Patches are all the rage these days. Check out your favorite brand and we’ll bet 10% off your next purchase* that they’ve got an apparel item with a patch of some sort on them. Patches fit any brand theme, can last as long as the shirt themselves and — surprise — don’t actually cost that much, especially when you’re integrating into an existing t-shirt order. Choose from (or all) five poppin’ patches: natural leather, eye-catching embroidery, intricate printing, rugged PVC or old-school chenille. Patches on your t-shirts add a literal and figurative dimensionality to clothing that turns heads.

    patches_on_t-shirt

    At this point, even we want to buy this t-shirt. 

    And more

    Did we mention that the above options are available for numerous shirt styles? Buttoned polos for professionals, long-sleeve shirts for winter and sleeveless shirts for the basketball court? That’s a “half-option” for us, but have fun with calls you’ll have to make at TeeSpring or CafePress to get some alternate threads. No matter the time or place, we’ve got the shirts to suit the occasion.

    Don’t accept the boring t-shirt mantra. Everyday, more and more people are getting The/Studio experience and finding out whole new meanings for the word “custom” — but don’t take our word for it. Send your logo to our designers today and they’ll make it happen on any style of shirt you want — free

    trims_on_t-shirt

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  •  3 Items Every Brand Should Stock
    January 23, 2017

     3 Items Every Brand Should Stock

    In the world of fashion design, a few subtle touches can be the difference between an instant classic and instant clearance rack. We’ve had the privilege of rocketing a few brands to the first status – and with each success, there’ve been a few common ingredients that belong to the family of clothing trim.

    What is trim anyway? It’s the sort of stuff that you find on clothing or accessories that’s not part of the item itself. That woven label, the hang tag, or the backing card on those cufflinks or ear rings — all trim. It’s the icing on the cake that bears a brand logo loud and proud and makes items look snazzy, professional and classy.

    It used to be only big brands could afford to have trim attached to their items — everyone else had to make home-made cards, plastic baggies and sticky notes (shudder). Like a lot of things, The/Studio changed that — read on to find out out a little more out these simple steps to fashionability and sales.

    Woven Labels 

    Woven_Label

    No professional brand does without them. Woven labels easily double retail values and allow your brand to lend value to clothing, just by association. This simple grace note sets you well above competitors just printing brand-logos onto the collar or (gasp!) leaving the manufacturer’s logo on. Quite a few brands opt to forego woven labels as they’re thought to be expensive to manufacture and have attached — but in fact, The/Studio makes adding woven label panache simple and affordable. It’s a no-brainer investment.

    Hang Tags 

    TheStudio_Hang_Tag

    Hang tags are the forgotten child of the trim family, and it’s a shame. Most folks think because these get cut and thrown away or used for bookmarks, they cut corners by skipping them. But take a moment and think what’s often missing from “brand-name” clothing at budget clothing stores — hang tags. If you’ve really invested in a strong brand identity, you’re missing out on major returns with hang tags. Hang tags are a concrete affirmation that a clothing article belongs to your brand — adding dollars of value for just pennies. Don’t leave your brand hanging — add some tags.

    Backer Cards

    Backer-Card

    Maybe your brand revolves more around accessories, like earrings, cufflinks or other jewelry items. In that case, a woven label or even a hangtag is a bit unmanageable. But don’t sell your gear unadorned. Kill two birds with one stone with custom backer cards that make it easy to store and retail your accessories while broadcasting the product’s brand affiliation loud and clear. Our cards are widely customizable and can accommodate virtually any accessory, unlike pre-made ones you can buy online. And they’re just as affordable.

    If one of your goals for 2017 was to take your brand to the next level, visit our reps today for any one of these products. That is, if you’re ready for the next level of brand awareness and profitability.

     

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  • Patches – a Temporary Fix That’s Here to Stay
    January 19, 2017

    Patches – a Temporary Fix That’s Here to Stay

    Back in the early days of The/Studio, we never expected our flagship product to be a fashion item. That first paintball patch was a daring little design but hardly revolutionary. Since then, we’ve always been committed to excellence in patches, but also felt compelled to expand our selection, too. Surely, customers would welcome other items, too.

    Turns out, we were right and wrong. We’ve rolled out almost over fifty products since 2006 but none have neared patches’ unstoppable popularity. And we’re floored by the creativity that goes into them and the wild places they end up going. And more recently, we’ve been surprised at the places that patches show up in the professional fashion world.

    jean_jacket_with_custom_patches

    Far from just covering up holes on your favorite pair of denim, stylized patches are now sported by celebrities, Instagram icons, musicians, artists and everyday fashion aficionados.  They remain the most versatile, durable, long-lasting and cost-effective means of expressing your brand without exhausting your wallet. And that’s pretty cool.

    The fashion houses are taking notice. Patches are showing up everywhere from kid’s pants to high-end t-shirts and coats as a bold alternative to run-of-the-mill embellishments. PVC patches handle a rainy day in the brush or construction muck as well as you do; embroidered patches last in countless washing cycles and maybe longer than the fabric underneath them; woven patches add a dimension of precision that screenprinting can only dream about — and don’t flake off after a wash or two. Show us an apparel market and we’ll show you a patch born to rock it.

    Thanks to their versatility, we see the patch trend continuing — and The/Studio customers don’t have to worry about keeping up. Every week, our patch manufacturing techniques get a little faster, efficient and more precise. Remember that last order we did for you? Don’t be surprised if we can do it faster and for less this time around. Still waiting to pull the trigger on your first order with us? You’ll be surprised at how simple, painless — and maybe even fun — it is to get exactly what you have in mind.

    Going into 2017, The/Studio might be the only supplier equipped to keep up with this latest fashion fad — after all, we helped start it.

    Getting started is free and takes ten seconds —head over to our patches page and get a quote in just minutes.

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