For t-shirt designers, the print-on-demand services CafePress and Skreened provide a useful comparison point, since the two outfits print designs on the same men’s organic cotton t-shirt from American Apparel. To show you what’s possible printing on the same shirt with CafePress and with Skreened, I’ve taken the same item — a redesign of a classic public domain WPA image by V. Donaghue to get harsh on John McCain’s war policy — and applied it to both the CafePress process and the Skreened process.
Here’s the extent of what I can offer from that image using the CafePress service:
CafePress only permits designers to print within a 10×10 inch box on the t-shirt.
And on the exact same men’s American Apparel Organic Cotton t-shirt, here is what I can offer using the Skreened service:
Bam! A stronger impact, yes? That’s because Skreened permits a print area on the same shirt of 11×17 inches, which is the size of a small poster.
But wait! There’s more! And I’m not talking about ginsu knives here. CafePress offers only this single men’s organic cotton t-shirt from American Apparel. Skreened, on the other hand, offers the same men’s organic cotton t-shirt in five colors, including Dijon:
and these colors aren’t just available in an Organic Cotton Men’s Shirt. Skreened offers the five colors of an Organic Cotton Women’s T-Shirt as well:
Let’s sum up: while a number of shopkeepers have been asking CafePress for years to expand its organic t-shirt line, the huge corporation hasn’t done so. The indie upstart Skreened has ten combinations of color and style in organic shirts — boom, like that. Skreened lets you print on as much as a big, big 11×17 inch area on the shirts. CafePress keeps you in a 10×10 inch box.
When it comes to flexibly fitting the needs of graphic designers and the desires of shoppers, Skreened is the hands-down winner for organic American Apparel shirts.