How to Draw a Shirt in Illustrator

how to draw a shirt

This one is for beginners and newbies to the world of Illustrator. Here are simple steps on How To Draw A Shirt.

Adobe Illustrator is one among the plethora of tools that have come in handy and become a staple for designers all over the world in the past decade. Software like Illustrator and Photoshop help you create wonders in the name of design and innovation.

Art itself has been reinvented due to such amazing software. Of course, they say Rome wasn’t built in a day, right? Getting acquainted with this software and paving the way to becoming a professional is a long but interesting task, especially for aspiring artists and graphic designers.

To begin with, start by designing small projects on Illustrator. Illustrator and Photoshop go hand in hand, which is why it is pivotal to become well-versed in both software. One popular beginner-level project for aspiring artists is a shirt drawing on Illustrator. Considering this is one of your first projects, here are some simple steps you can use to draw a shirt on Adobe Illustrator.

Of course, watching easy drawing tutorials is one of the easiest ways. However, drawing tutorials can be misleading especially because skimming back and forth the video while watching it can be quite the task. If you are more of a reader and grasp information better when it is in written form, this blog is for you!

Do keep in mind that this is a highly simple and beginner-level tutorial on how to draw a shirt! For more complex and detailed designs, stay tuned to our upcoming blogs. Mark the best one for you Illustrator vs Photoshop.

Pick a reference image

In order to draw a shirt in Illustrator, it is important to procure a good reference image of a shirt or t-shirt that will help you with the initial process of tracing an outline. It could be a shirt with long sleeves, a shirt collar, or a t-shirt drawing.

how to draw a shirt collar

Using the Pen Tool

For starters, after placing your template image, start tracing around the t-shirt image. Start by choosing the Pen Tool from the toggle menu. Change the color of the Pen Tool to red (or any bright color of your choice) so it will be easier to follow. Trace an outline of the t-shirt roughly on one side so you can use the Reflect Tool to copy-paste (The next step of the process). To convert the straight line into a curved line, use the Anchor Point Tool and convert the straight lines into curved lines to fit along the t-shirt drawing. Lines are an integral part of every piece of art, hence they require more prominence while drawing.

how to draw a shirt in illustrator
how to draw a collared shirt

Using the Reflect Tool

After tracing half of the shirt drawing along with the sleeve and collar, right-click and hit the “Reflect” button. Make sure the angle mentioned in the dropbox is 90 degrees. Copy and paste the existing shirt drawing and place it accordingly so that it fits perfectly.

how to draw a t shirt
how to draw a button up shirt

Don’t forget the Layers!

Layers are a pivotal part of every Adobe Illustrator design. Layers allow you to edit, change, hide and lock content on one layer without affecting the content on other layers. Layers are important because they enable you to effectively handle your content on the platform.

To access Layers, all you need to do is click on “Layers” in the right side of the working area. If you cannot view it, click on “Windows” and then click on “Layers”.

how to draw a t-shirt
design how to draw a shirt

Drawing the cross stitches!

To add a realistic effect to your shirt drawing, you need to add cross stitches on the sleeves, shirt collar, and on the upper part of the shirt. To create these, you can make use of the “Dashed line” option in Illustrator. To access this option, all you have to do is :

Create a line using the line segment tool

Go to the “Properties” tab and click on “Appearance” on the right-hand side.

Click on “Stroke”.

Click the option titled “Dashed Line”.

Enter the values you require for the length and spacing of the dashes.

You can specify the line thickness by entering a value in the “Weight” column.

how to draw a shirt step by step
how to draw a dress shirt

Adding some color!

Now that your t shirt drawing is almost complete, it’s time to add some color and character to it. This can be achieved by using colored pencils on Illustrator and you can also add shadows on the t shirt for a realistic effect. It is ideal to use light colors such as light blue and pastel shades.

To access the colored pencils on Illustrator, go to the “Layers Palette” menu and click on the “Layer Options” dialog box. Here you can change the color and access new colors of your choice.

how to draw a polo shirt

A few other simple ways to draw a shirt on Illustrator

Step 1

Open up Adobe Illustrator and create a new document.

Step 2

Next, take your shirt reference image and place it in the center of your document. You may want to resize it to fit better.

Step 3

Now, we will start by creating the outline of the shirt. Draw a simple rectangular shape that follows the contours of the shirt.

Step 4

Next, use the Pen Tool (P) to draw the collar and the cuffs of the shirt.

Step 5

To create the buttons, use the Ellipse Tool (L) and draw a small circle in the center of each button.

Step 6

Next, we will be adding some details to the shirt. For this, we will be using the Blob Brush Tool (B). Draw a small blob on each side of the collar.

Step 7

Finally, we will be adding a shadow to the shirt. For this, we will be using the Gradient Tool (G). Select a light blue color for your gradient and drag it from the bottom of the shirt to the top. You can adjust the angle of the gradient as needed. That’s it! You have now drawn a shirt on Adobe Illustrator. Check out the ultimate guide to t-shirt design.

That’s all, folks!

We hope you thoroughly enjoyed and made the best of our short tutorial on How To Draw A Shirt. Adobe Illustrator is an irreplaceable part of every designer’s life be it for designing clothing, aspiring graphic designers, fashion designers who are looking to start a clothing line, to design shirts, experimenting with lines, or for those who like to sketch for fun! You can also check how to create a gif in Photoshop.

Check out the All Time Design website for more such intriguing and informative blogs! Dive into our website for all things design related. Explore the simple steps to how to resize image in Photoshop.

April 5, 2022
10 min read
11 reads

Impress your customers with cutting-edge graphics!
By signing up, you agree to All Time Design's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy
Thank you for subscribe!

Ready to create more
designs for lesser costs?

Start your 14-day free trial
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.