Why I (don’t) use Spreadshirt

“It’s like working with a local printshop.”

This may be one of the hardest Print on Demand site reviews to write, because it’s a site that I don’t use for various reasons.  I do try to keep these positive, so let me focus on the positives of the other big name out there in Print on Demand … Spreadshirt

Here are some of the big selling points for folks who like it:

  • Just like a regular print shop!
    They offer some types of printing that are more like regular print shops, but none of the other POD sites are doing, like flocked printing and metallic/glitter printing.
  • Just like a regular print shop! (part two)
    If you’ve ever worked with a regular shirt printing shop, you’ll be familiar with their pricing structures and image requirements for their primary design model.  If not, here’s a summary: you’ll pay more for more colors (max of 3 colors); you’ll need to provide the design as a vector file (.eps) like you would make in Corel Draw, Illustrator, or Inkscape (free!).
  • The number you see is the number you get.
    Spreadshirt doesn’t muck about with percentages – you set your commission as a straight dollar amount on the design.  If you set up a specific product in a ‘shop’ (not that you have to – you can add just to the Design Gallery!), you can set up a separate commission on the product itself in addition to the design commission.
  • Great designers borrow.
    Their Design Gallery is full of designs you can legitimately add to items for your own shop.  You can add them as-is or make your own tweaks before posting the product.  The artist gets a commission, you get a commission, everyone wins.
  • Now also offering digital printing, like those other POD sites
    In what seems to be an effort to cover the Print on Demand bases, they’ve added “digital printing”.  Digital printing is like the printing done by Zazzle and Cafepress and is suitable for bitmap images with lots of colors.  Spreadshirt only offers this on a limited set of shirt styles and has a separate pricing structure for them, so it seems clear that this still isn’t their main focus.

Are you awesome with Illustrator and own at vectors?  Do you have just a handful of simple, iconic designs?  Are you comfortable working with the limitations of standard print shops?  If all your answers are ‘yes’, consider working with Spreadsheet.

If, like most folks, you’re answering ‘no’ to some of those, take a look at my reviews of other Print On Demand sites.

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1 Response to Why I (don’t) use Spreadshirt

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