What to look for in a Custom Apparel & Design Shop

Endless color options, apparel choices and designs, how’s a person supposed to make these decisions with all of the endless possibilities?? To bring your image to life, you’ll want the help and guidance of an experienced and reliable custom apparel and design shop.

There are dozens of screen printing & embroidery shops to choose from, how do you find the one that’s the best fit for you? Below are guidelines and suggestions that will help you determine which shop is the best fit for you!


Ask for Recommendations

Recommendations are a great way to find out the reputation and reliability of a company. Ask your friends, family, and co-workers if they’ve used anyone in the past and how their experience was. Recommendations/referrals are one of our top ways that we receive new clients and even have our own Client Referral Program rewarding those that refer new clients to us!

Online Reviews

When looking up any company, online reviews are your best friend! Be sure to check out Google and Facebook reviews to see what people are saying about the company. Look for a company that has multiple reviews instead of just a few to make sure they are staying consistent! Check out our 33 review — 4.8 star Google Reviews online.


Look for Experience & Reliability

Experience is critical. Look for a company that has been printing for years. With years of experience under their belt, they’ve figured out what works and what doesn’t. What is their record for meeting customer deadlines? How easy is it to work with them? Are they organized?

In 2018, TOP DOG was able to get all of our orders out in 2 weeks or LESS, are told over and over again how AWESOME our Customer Service Extraordinaire Kathy is, (Don’t believe us? Find out for yourself!), and even have our ordering process laid out so that you know what to expect. We’re pretty good at what we do 😉


Take a Tour

Taking a showroom tour is a great way to learn how a company really feels about quality. Here are a few things to look for while you are exploring their showroom.

  • Is it clean? Is it difficult to navigate through the shop? Does it appear to be well maintained?
  • Does the showroom look efficient and orderly? Is it neat and uncluttered or does it look like an episode from the TV show “Hoarders”? Are dust bunnies multiplying in every nook and cranny?
  • What is their offering like? Do they offer a variety of products and cater to a large audience of people or focus solely on one area? Are apparel options easy to find and organized well?

Screen printing shops are notorious for being cluttered, however you can rest assured that if a shop cares enough about keeping their showroom clean and well organized, they’ll put the same care, time and quality into each and every piece in your order. What do you think about our showroom? We’d love to show you around! 😊


Browse Portfolios & Services

Custom apparel work is highly visual and shops should be proud of the work that they are doing for their customers. Be sure to check out the shop’s website and Facebook page to see examples of their past designs and what they’ve done before!

TOP DOG Apparel’s Pinterest Board: Featured Designs

Ask Questions & Assess Their Customer Service

If you haven’t done so already, give the shop a call. Ask questions via email. Visit their showroom. Explain what you want and ask how they can help you accomplish your goal. Look for a company with a friendly, knowledgeable staff. Here are a few questions you will want to ask:

  • What brands do you carry?
  • How many colors can you print?
  • Do you have in-house graphic desigers?
  • What is the turn around time for your order?
  • How much will your project cost?
  • Do you require down payment?
  • What are your order minimums?
  • Do you have art and/or screen fees?

Feeling Confident

After assessing a few shops using the above methods, you should be able to narrow the list down to the BEST custom apparel and custom design shop for you!

What’s that? You like what TOP DOG Apparel has to offer? Awesome, we thought you might! 😉 Browse our online apparel catalog or stop by our showroom to select the items you want, otherwise if you’re ready, start your project today by getting a Quick Quote, click the button below!

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