10 T-Shirt Print Trends You Need to Know for 2019

February 22, 2019


T-Shirt design trends are constantly changing, some of them stay for a while, some evolve in small ways and some are evergreen but they are always moving around. It's vital to understand how design styles are changing and evolving to keep your printed products ahead of the game.

2019 looks to be a year filled with new digital techniques and cool visual aesthetics all mashed together with timeless ideas.

Check out our TOP 10 T-Shirt print trends to consider when putting your T-Shirt or printed product collections together this year and beyond.

1-Extreme Orient

This trend is dramatic and detailed inspired by Yakuza Irezumi or Japanese mafia tattoo art. Arguably the most recognizable creature in Japanese iconography is the Dragon and is the main design element along with snakes, tigers and mythical Japanese creatures, creating an air of danger and sinister appeal. Vintage-inspired traditional patterns mixed with key Japanese characters in modern reworked color palettes create killer combinations. Traditional  Japanese calligraphy and or modern Japanese typography are also key design elements in this T-Shirt print trend.



2-Gradient Effect

Striking color transitions and dramatic gradients will continue being on trend in 2019, only even more vivid. Extreme color combinations and subtle shading add unreal depth to illustrations that would otherwise remain flat. Neon shapes overlay greyscale photographs and images are hidden and obscured with gradient elements. Many designs combine 3D visual techniques with trendy complex gradients for an even more powerful look.



3- Mother Nature

It’s time to embrace the world’s natural wonders– blooming fields, dense jungle undergrowth, arctic landscapes, island and desert foliage and all of mother natures wonderful creations. Heavily influenced by botanical and natural elements, this trend is softly detailed with elegant hand illustrated elements, organic color palettes and detailed content that tells a story about the beauty that surrounds us.



4- Creative Type

Feeling wordy? Speaking up boldly never goes out of style. Typographic designs are always trending in one form or another, but creative techniques are evolving in 2019.  3D rendering, futuristic lettering, hand drawn fonts, extreme color and even typography that interacts with other design elements, will stand out among the rest. Think snarky quotes, expletives, political views, one-word musings, puns or just plain silly slogans.



5- Tie-Dye Effect

If you thought tie-dye was reserved for your surfers, hippies or for Grateful Dead obsessives, think again. 2019 sees the evolution of tie-dye as a strong print trend that has been modernised. Complex tie-dye patterns look new in unconventional colors and experimental digital tie-dye patterns are emerging. Pastel rainbow tie-dyes pop on dark grounds, white slogans are printed over tie-dye graphics and painterly strokes, inky lines and bleeding dyes create tie-dye texture in classic T-Shirt print designs.



6-Collected Collage

In 2019 the traditional digital collage trend is still strong, collating a mis-match of imagery, but it is becoming neater and more vibrant. Illustrative or geometric elements are placed over photographs creating a striking feel. Photographs of portraits and scenery are spliced and re-arranged with random gradient layers or typography placed on top. Detailed hand drawn illustrations are obscured with image clippings and digital patterns. Digital glitch and pattern effects are added for a futuristic surreal aesthetic.



7-Future Metal

Virtual reality, artificial intelligence, robotics and androids will continue to blend more and more with our everyday reality and influence design. Metallic effects and surfaces add depth and strength to the designs and typographies by creating futuristic aesthetic. Futuristic amplified colors create mesmerizing out-of-this-world designs. A hint of nostalgia is added with the continued popularity of the futuristic 80’s design aesthetic. Overall this trend is a blend between psychedelic science, virtual reality and 80’s cool that will make you feel like you are in an alternative universe.


8-Fools Gold

Gold never goes out of style but in 2019 we will be seeing a lot more metal elements blended into T-Shirt designs. This metallic gold effect will especially be seen in 3D rendered designs where gold and other metallic elements take the whole composition to the next level, making it look luxurious and exclusive. The classic combination remains of metallic on black and white bases.


9-Motor Sport

Start revving those engines, this print trend is going into full throttle. 2019 motor racing inspired prints are edgy with modern sporty street style appeal. The iconic black and white checker board pattern is mixed with old school racing aesthetics and modern clean layouts. Logo style emblems express allegiance to everything from motocross sports to car racing teams. Color-blocked retro lines on chest placements feature with bold fonts. The color palette is mostly black-and-white paired with electric blue, red and yellow.


10-Global Citizen

With the freedom of having the ability to work wherever there is wifi and the yearning for spiritual awakening through travel and discovery we are seeing an increasing global influence on print design. This T-Shirt print trend is quirky, eclectic, bohemian and crafty. Ethnic patterns combine and collide for a patchwork effect. Textural techniques overhaul traditional indigenous patterns and cultural icons for an eclectic look. Colors derived from nature pair back to ethnic hues. The paisley pattern is associated with all kinds of exotic, far-off locals and is a key element in this trend.


(All images in these mood boards are sourced from Pinterest).
(The images above are mood boards only and not for resale or use on any other blogs).



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