I still have my senior shirt from when I graduated high school some 20+ years ago. I keep it as an artifact of a special time in my life, and to bring back some of those memories from those formative years. High school can be a very meaningful time to a young person, full of very rich and transformative experiences. When the slogan “been there, done that, got the t-shirt” was coined, they had to have been talking about high school. We take our participation in this aspect of the High School experience very seriously. We hope to be creating a design that is worthy of being an artifact of someone’s experiences as they look back on them 20 years from now. In the year 2040, we hope that someone who is in High School now will still have one of the shirts we produced in their closet, and look at it with some degree of fondness. With this in mind, we encourage schools to create designs that the students will actually want to wear.
Some high schools are very active in their t-shirt strategies. Valencia High School, West Ranch High School, and Murrieta High School will both produce a number of t-shirts in support of their football season. West Ranch sponsors a theme night for each of their home games which includes a shirt designed for that night. Valencia High School has a very strong football team, and they will print shirts in support of the specific victories that the team has earned. Murietta High School has a very active booster club, which prints shirts and then sells them to the parents. We are familiar with all of these strategies, and can accommodate a wide range of design needs.
If you are new to the spirit wear process, or if you are an activities director who doesn’t have the time to put into creating a compelling spirit wear strategy on you own, let us see what we can do for you. You will see a part of our resume on this page, but our customers include Valencia, Rancho Pico, West Ranch, Placerita, La Mesa, Upland, Murrieta, and Burbank High Schools and Junior High Schools to name a few.
The artwork that goes on the shirt can be one of the most troublesome bottlenecks to finishing your high school shirt project. There are many people who need to be pleased with the design, and you have to design something that can be produced affordably and efficiently. Not only do we offer a free initial design service, but for schools we have an interactive onsite design process where we will go to a specific class or group meeting and design the shirt while the students are watching and giving feedback. This is a great opportunity for students to not only see the initial process of how their shirt will be manufactured, but for them to participate in it as well.
In the photo, our own Ross Hunter is at La Mesa Junior High School, interacting with the students during the design process. This way the design experience can be guided so that not only are aesthetic concerns satisfied, but also production and affordability concerns can be taken care of as well. Efficient and affordable production depends on the right amount of colors and the right number of placements, and with Ross guiding the process, the design will be right on target with all of those concerns.
If your school has a student body of 2300 young people, how can you know how many will order a spirit shirt? Some schools will just make an educated guess and order that number of shirts. The problem with that is if you don’t order enough shirts, the students will complain that they want a shirt and they can’t get one. If you order too many, you’re going to be stuck with several boxes of t-shirts for who knows how many years. While those boxes of shirts are sitting there, the design may grow stale or familiar, and the likelihood of selling them grows smaller. We work with a number of schools who utilize an active ‘pre-order’ process, so the ability to predict demand is far more precise. The sequence is very simple where the school #1 does the design (we can help with this process), then #2 accepts pre-orders while circulating a mock-up of the design and finally #3 order the number of shirts based on the pre-orders plus a little padding in case some didn’t get to do a pre-order. This will help to not only accurately determine the quality of garments, but it will help break down the order into the right quantity of sizes. This helps to avoid the dreaded ‘reorder’ where you will ask us to print another 5 shirts and we will tell you no. (for 30 or more, we will say yes, though….) A more controlled way to do pre-orders is to bundle the t-shirts with other things that they will need (such as lanyards, yearbooks, prom tickets, drawstring backpacks, sweatpants, etc.) and create a ‘package’ of goods that the student can buy.
We understand that school budgets are put in place to give back to the student, and we want to make sure that schools can leverage saving money on their spirit wear and other t-shirt purchases to have a more ‘student forward’ spending strategy. In other words, we don’t want you to break your budget on spirit wear so you can have money left over for other things students want. Because we are the printer and we don’t outsource your job, we are able to offer some of the best rates you will find without compromising quality.
Our most well-known competitors are the nationally advertised online design megahouses, who seem to spend most of their money on advertising and very little of it on service and quality. We have had customers who wanted to try to save a little money, and so they used one of these companies. They told us that the experience was horrible because #1 the delivery time was around a month and #2 when they finally received their shirts, the quality of the print was terrible and #3 they screwed up the artwork anyway. I know this sounds like a thing someone would say to convince you not to use the big nationally advertised companies (and it is of course) but this story happens to be true. This has emboldened us to say that if you really want to risk the quality and timing of your order to an entity you know nothing about, then go ahead. We pride ourselves on our high customer retention rate (about 96%). In the rare event that there is a problem with a customer's order, we are the first to step in and diagnose the issue and come up with an expedient remedy. We do pride ourselves on giving immaculate customer service. To be fair, some of the large nationally advertised retailers do a good job, but their online artwork is lacking, and they are more expensive than we are. If you want to put us to the test, we have our own online designer that will give you a similar experience to the nationally advertised brands, but you will find that we are about 30% less expensive than most of them.
If you would like us to help you with your spirit wear, or school organization t-shirt needs, call us at 909-981-0492, or e-mail us and we can get you on the right track to completing your order on time and for the right price. It will even look good!
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