How to Order Custom Event Shirts (for Events with Registration)



Making shirts for events is a lot different than for events without registration, a regular business or for sale to the public.

Let’s face it, it’s an absolute nightmare to host an event and either have registrants without a shirt, or to have hundreds of unclaimed shirts wasted on orders too large. A mistake on what’s required (even just the wrong shirt sizes) can be disastrous for an event co-ordinator’s bottom line. We want to help you avoid mistakes in this area.



Co-ordinate with your printer:

For events where everyone attending needs to register, registration usually runs until the last possible moment to encourage as many sign-ups as possible. It can be a big challenge to get a promotional product order to be perfect because many events can double or triple in confirmed participation in the last few weeks as the deadline approaches. Stay organized so you can provide your printer the details they need  as quickly as possible to make the event a success.

Whoever you’re working with will need to know as many details as possible leading up to the print date. They will need artwork from you, a final shirt style choice, an estimated order size and a scheduled print date.

For the printing to happen successfully at the last minute, the details need to be organized well in advance.

Take sizing information during registration:

The more information you have the better. By taking sizing information as part of the registration you’ll be saving time and money down the road.

End registration before event day:

If registration continues until the day of, you’ll be facing unpredictable numbers and complications. Shutting down registration before your event begins will ensure there will be enough shirts for your participants. If you still want to capitalize on those late to the table, add an extra a limited number of extra slots. You limit your potential surplus product this way.

Cotton vs. Polyester:

Typically fitness event shirts will be polyester based. Everything else will be cotton based because cotton is the more cost effective. Even fitness events will occasionally use cotton to keep costs down but our recommendation is to work with your printer to find the right material for your event. There are options besides, but between 100% cotton and 100% polyester you’re covered for nearly event possibility.

When working with timelines of days/hours, find a local vendor:

A local vendor is important for 1 reason. You can work with them to turnaround fast orders. In the past we’ve worked with races to print shirts the day before the event which ensures their registration is as complete as possible and they aren’t wasting a dime. It’s important to wait as long as possible to order because as mentioned newer events can double or triple in size in the last couple weeks of registration unpredictably. Remember not all vendors are so flexible, so consider more than just price when getting quotes.



INFORMATION AND ORGANIZATION ARE KING! Stay on top of your numbers, your registrants and communicate regularly with your printer to ensure a successful order.