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How to choose the right T-shirt to print on

We have access to some great brands including Gildan, Bella, Canvas, and American Apparel. Whether you are cost conscious, looking for a fashion tee, or want a fair trade option – we’ve got you covered!

Gildan is a Canadian company and is our primary supplier for apparel. They have a wide variety of quality clothing in many different styles and colours. They have 3 main categories of tee’s made with 100% cotton.

Gildan Heavy Cotton: If cost is your biggest concern, then the Gildan 5000 tee’s might be for you. They are a 8.9oz weight cotton and come in ladies, men and youth styles.

Gildan Ultra Cotton: this is Gildan’s best seller. It comes in 12 different styles and almost 50 colours. It is a 10.1oz weight

Gildan Softstyle: These t-shirts are our preferred Gildan tee. This style has a much softer feel and slimmer fit than the other Gildan styles. It comes in men and ladies with both a crew neck and v-neck. It is a 7.5oz weight.

Bella+Canvas is a higher quality, more fashionable tee. Bella is the ladies label and Canvas is the Men’s and Unisex label. This company is based out of LA. Bella+Canvas offer great styles and their shirts are all 100% combed and ring-spun cotton which makes for a super soft feel. These shirts are a little more pricey than Gildan, but are worth it if you are looking for a stylish fit.

American Apparel proudly dyes, cuts, and knits all of their clothing in Downtown Los Angeles. They have a big selection of styles and colours and are a great choice for those who want a sweatshop free option. With peace of mind, comes a higher price tag but these shirts are also a great quality.

If you aren’t sure what you are looking for, be sure to ask! We can help you find the perfect shirt for your print.

35 thoughts on “How to choose the right T-shirt to print on”

  1. For a soft, slim fit for men and women we definitely recommend Gildan Softstyle as a more budget conscience choice, or American Apparel (if you’re concerned about sweatshop-free garments made in the USA).

    Send us an email at [email protected] with how many shirts your looking for, how many colours in your design and we can provide you with pricing.

  2. Would you say CANVAS tee shirts have a thicker feel to them? I’m looking for a tee shirt that feels thick refraining from stretching and ultimately feels likes a higher quality.

  3. Hi Jacob,
    Our thickest feeling shirts would probably be the Gildan 2000. Canvas have a nice soft feel to them, but both of these shirts are 100% cotton. In order to resist stretching (or shrinking), we recommend a 50/50 cotton-polyester blend (Gildan 8000 or Canvas heather colours).

    We have many samples in our showroom if you’d like to stop by anytime!

  4. Hi i am looking for a high quality fashionable tee that has a thick feel to it but still refrains from stretching and shrinking. Keywords are fashionable, thick, non-schrinking.

    Thank you

  5. Last year I ordered Gildan softsytle v-neck and round-neck for the ladies in the office, but it was JUNIOR cut and too tight on most of the staff. Is there a super soft t-shirt that has a v-neck option that is not junior cut but more for the middle-aged mom body?

  6. Hello there !

    Would you like to let me know which t-shirts are very soft (extra soft on skin ) Gildan 2000 10.1 oz or organic cotton 8.5 oz ?

    To be soft has to be more oz ?

  7. Hi! Organic cotton tends to be softer on the skin. Gildan 2000’s are more “stiff” or “sturdy”, and are generally a little rougher to the touch.

  8. Hey, I’m lookin for a t shirt with a bit more length to it, I believe I’ve ordered a gildan 5000 before and its just not quite long enough to the waist or sleaves. is there a difference to 2000? I like the skate/hip hop look. not short tight fitted.

  9. Hi Jason,
    The Gildan 5000 is a shorter and more boxey fit. If you’d like an oversized fit, I would suggest a Gildan 2000 one size larger than normal. You might also want to consider the new AmericanApparel Box Hammer Tee. Shoot us an email at [email protected] for a custom quote!

  10. Hi i need help, i’m looking for tshirtst for toddlers and kids. I need a soft style and a more fashionable one.
    quantities to be determined, what do you recommend ? thank you

  11. Hi Kate,
    We haven’t used Hanes Nano Tees. I would check out Gildan SoftStyle or Canvas 3001 if you’re looking for soft.
    Thanks for commenting!

  12. hello looking for a shirt for both for youth and adult sizes. Want something that doesn’t shrink, and durable. But under 9$ per shirt. Anything? Thanks

  13. Hi im looking for the best tshirt to heat press transfer paper on. What would you suggest from the list provided?

  14. Hi Veronica,
    Heat press transfer papers should generally work with any garment that can stand up to the high heat from a heat press (or a regular home iron).

    Most cottons, poly, and blend fabrics should be fine, but something like nylon (shell jackets or track pants) may melt under the heat application. Try a small area or a test a scrap of the fabric beforehand to be 100% sure before you apply your final design.


  15. Hi I am looking for a soft cotton but heavy feel shirt, kinda like supreme and a bathing ape tees. What is the best brand to use other than going fully cut & sew, also look for a good screen printer and embroider

  16. Hello , how can I get the Gildan 5000 to be more soft to the touch , feel worn and not as rough . It’s very harsh to the touch .

  17. Hi Julie,
    A tiger can’t change it’s stripes, and you can’t change how a Gildan 5000 feels 🙂 We recommend choosing a higher quality t-shirt if softness is a concern – something like the Canvas 3001 or the American Apparel BB301.

  18. I’m looking for onesies and toddler t-shirts. I seem to find a myriad of options for Rabbit Skins, but I love the feel of Bella & Canvas and Gildan Softstyle….do they make baby/toddler shirts at a cost effective price??

  19. Question to ask. I have a customer who needs a blue v-neck t-shirt so that I can heat press a design vinyl onto it. Would the G64V Gildan Softstyle® 7.5 oz./lin. yd. V-Neck T-Shirt be ok to do this? I usually order the Gildan 5000 but there’s no vneck style for that so I saw this type but I want to make sure that it can be ok to do vinyl on it before I order the shirt. Thanks 🙂

  20. Hi Salvatore. The Gildan G64V would be perfect for heat press. My problem with v-necks is that sometimes the full chest design can end up on the person’s belly area due to the shape of the shirt. In my opinion, left heart prints work best with v-necks.

  21. I have ordered Comfort Colors shirts before and been very pleased. However,Canvas 3001 and G640 were suggested as a lower priced alternative. I have experience with the Bella (women’s canvas line?) and do not like the women’s fit for my “population”. What suggestions do you have for a shirt similar to comfort colors in feel and quality?

  22. Hi Kathy. We don’t have experience with the Comfort Colors brand, so I’m not sure about their fit. We’ve found Canvas to fit on the smaller side as they are a ‘fashion fit’ t-shirt. Gildan offers a large selection of colours to choose from and has one of the widest range of sizes (XS–6XL depending on the style). Gildan also offers a range of price points with different cotton/poly mixes for different feels. Hope this helps!

  23. Hi there,
    I’m looking for the following qualities in a shirt:
    Roomier fit, not slim
    No shrinkage after washing
    Thicker material if possible, but can pass on that if the other qualities are met.

  24. Hi there,

    I am looking for a shirt that will be my main supply for my shirt paintings! I have used primark shirts, fruit of the loom and gildan in the past. Overall I actually like the feel of the primark ones! I think this is because they feel sofer. I came across your gildan soft style shirts and these grabbed my attention. A. Would these be ok to use fabric paint on? B. are they the same sizing as the Heavy weight gildan shirts? I have already sold shirts based on the heavy weight dimensions so I have to try and maintain my sizing. Thanks so much,

  25. Currently using the Bella & Canvas 3001 UNISEX for my online store – due to the times and me having to supplement my full time income i need to offer something of similar quality but at a lower cost – what would you advise (direct to garment printing)

  26. Looking for great quality women’s t-shirts that’s not as costly as Bella canvas and has a fitted type look that runs true to size….

    Also what ladies shirts do you recommend for 3x and above

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