Looking Ahead: 5 T-shirt Trends For 2017


As we bid our final farewells to a year that has given us so much, we are already eagerly gearing up for everything that awaits us in 2017. At Saltycustoms, being able to identify upcoming trends in the t-shirt and custom t-shirt industries is an essential part of our business, so, our team has made some projections about t-shirt trends that may crop up in the next 12 months. Let’s take a look what they are, shall we?

“In 2016, the global athleisure market had a market size of a whopping $270 billion, and the number is expected to grow by 30% by 2020.”
Sportswear has increasingly been worn outside of its intended settings. Images: Nike
1. Sportswear & Athleisure


The idea that sportswear or athlete apparels can be worn outside of their intended settings is rapidly becoming one of the trendiest fashion statements for 2017. These days, people sporting yoga pants in shopping malls and cafes are a common sight, and individuals who wear sporty t-shirts to social outings hardly raise any eyebrows.


In 2016, the global athleisure market had a market size of a whopping $270 billion, and the number is expected to grow by 30% by 2020.


As for Malaysia, we believe that the sportswear and athleisure market will take off tremendously in 2017 due to the SEA Games, which will be held in Kuala Lumpur in August.


We created line illustrations for many of our start-up and tech-related clients.
2. Line Illustration T-shirts


While t-shirts with line illustrations have been around for quite some time, we have been receiving plenty of positive feedback and a high demand for it ever since we integrated this unique design into our portfolio in late 2016.


It’s not difficult to see why line illustrations are becoming so popular, though. Line illustrations are often associated to modern elements and technology as they are often employed by technological brands when it comes to design; and the meteoric rise of tech start-ups and new-age companies has provided timely relevance to this particular design language.


In 2017, we expect to see a higher demand for t-shirts with line illustrations as more and more cool start-ups begin to emerge in Malaysia, the Silicon Valley and all around the world. So, whether you are in the tech, start-up, F&B or even retail business, we definitely recommend you to look into t-shirts with line illustrations to promote your brand.

“Judging by the overwhelming response we have been receiving for the past 12 months, we are positive that high-density print t-shirts will become one of the biggest t-shirt hits of 2017.”
High-density print highlights certain design or text elements on a t-shirt.
3. High-Density Print


High-density print brings a different perspective towards t-shirt design to the table. Although technology continues to advance and the world around us is adopting the digital age, high-density print brings with it a refreshing change by offering something a little more tangible, as you can actually feel the design on a t-shirt with your fingertips.


Due to its raised profile and rubbery texture, high-density print is very useful in highlighting certain design or text elements on a t-shirt, and this print methods works really well with smaller and finer design styles, such as line illustrations.


Judging by the overwhelming response we have been receiving for the past 12 months, we are positive that high-density print t-shirts will become one of the biggest t-shirt hits of 2017.


Dye sub print t-shirts are being introduced by a wide range of retail brands, from Nike to Givenchy. Images: Nike/Lyst
4. Dye Sub Print


Dye sub print t-shirts are produced by using heat to turn ink into gas particles that permeate thoroughly into the polyster fabric. Therefore, unlike high-density print t-shirts, you can’t actually feel the print on dye sub print t-shirts.


In recent years, dye sub print has been gaining a huge following, simply because it is suitable to be used from the loudest of to even the most subtle print designs. Aside from that, dye sub print t-shirts are being introduced by fashion brands of every kind, from high street names like Givenchy and Gucci, to sportswear brands like Nike and Under Armour.


While dye sub print t-shirts may be costlier to produce than normal t-shirts, we believe that it will appeal to even a wider range of audience in 2017 due to their versatality and unique aesthetics.

“T-shirts with slogans or statements are making appearances everywhere these days, from the bodies of A-list stars to the runways of New York and Paris.”
The ‘Nasty Woman’ t-shirt, famously supported by Katy Perry, became one of the most popular pieces of apparel in 2016. Image: Getty
5. Statement T-shirts


T-shirts with slogans or statements are making appearances everywhere these days, from the bodies of A-list stars to the runways of New York and Paris. In fact, one of the biggest and most-watched events of 2016, the US Presidential Election, gave birth to the ‘Nasty Woman’ t-shirt, which became one of the most controversial and most popular pieces of apparel of the year.


Much like tattoos, statement t-shirts can help people send a message without having to utter a word. Which is why they are extremely popular around the world these days, especially among politicians and celebrities. We can safely say that we expect to see a lot more of statement t-shirts in 2017.



What do you think of the trends we predicted? If you have your own predictions to share, feel free to email us at media@saltycustoms.com or drop us a message at facebook.com/saltycustoms today. Before we end, we would like to take this opportunity to wish you a Happy New Year, and may 2017 have in store for you even better and greater opportunities.

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