Killer T-Shirt Color Combinations & Designs for 2024


As t-shirts have become a go-to attire for every get-away, plenty of t-shirt trends are on its way. But what color works best for you? If you are at the beach, a lovely white tee will make you look ravishing. It becomes picture-perfect with the brown sand and the blue ocean background. Similarly, even while designing t-shirts, it’s essential to know the T shirt design color combination that will click. Mixing funky combinations is also trending nowadays, but you need to know the right kind of funkiness that your customers would love.

The rules are easy peasy when it comes to t-shirt design. There are some conventional sets of colors that would look bomb, but there are some less conventional colors too, which give a sense of refreshing and original feel. In this blog, we will be exploring the unique color combinations for t-shirts that actually work well.

Though choosing your t-shirt color is a fun part of designing, it might get tricky sometimes. It is because certain color combinations look more vibrant on a computer screen than they do in real life.

Before getting into the color combinations, let’s understand some do’s and don’ts while mixing colors. Let’s briefly know what goes well with lighter and darker shades. 

When you are using lighter colors, be aware of pastel colors like baby blue or light pink which are visible on shirts but may not be legible from a distance. Adding an outline of darker colors on these light colors can highlight the text or graphics and make it look stunning even from a distance.

Darker colors look perfect with lighter colors but you should be more cautious while picking darker colors like cardinal, forest, or maroon. These may look amazing on your computer screen, but there are chances of the fabric color distorting the ink color, making them look dull. You can also have a look at t-shirt design tips

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T-Shirt design color combination

Olive and Gold

This is one funky combination that we have always seen on olive oil containers. But on t-shirts? Why not?! If you think these colors don’t translate well, this photo above can be a good example to prove your assumption wrong. This t-shirt design color combination will somehow pull off a muted as well as earthy look while adding some shine in the form of gold. This makes it look distinctive without being obnoxious.

Orange and Blue

These are the complementary colors in the color wheel which make people think that they will pair well, but that is just not fully true. It will be more accurate to say that they provide a required balance to each other than to say they go well together.

Actually, pairing complementary colors will give a loud and abrasive color ensemble, especially if you use the truest version like royal blue and bright orange. Trying to pair them like these would be tricky. If you tone down the versions, they turn out to be quite impressive. For example, using navy blue and subtle orange shades will make your t-shirts look nice without sounding too strong.

Forest Green and Pink

With forest green being a bit darker and earthier while pink is vibrant and playful, they are an excellent contrast to work with. If we give it more detailed thought, it actually makes sense. If it’s pleasing to watch a pink flower with a green stem, why can’t it do wonders on a t-shirt?!

Red and Yellow

The first thought for anyone on this combination could be that they won’t go well as they are closer to each other on the color wheel and would remind you too much of a certain superhero. But never let these thoughts sway you away from choosing this combo.

Feel free to decrease them by shade, or you could even keep them nice and bright. This is a bright and fun t-shirt design color combination that is sure to stand out (obviously in a good way).

Beige and Maroon

Combining beige and maroon would definitely not be flashy, but why does everything need to be flashy? Let’s get the subtleness to steal the eyes. Though these two colors won’t work for every design, they give a nice old-school look to your t-shirts. If you have a modern design in your mind, it’s better to stay away from this combo. But if you have a vintage illustration or serif typography, you can go with this option.

Red, Blue, and Yellow

This is the primary color overload! It’s not advisable to mix three primary colors as it might make your t-shirt look like an elementary school lesson on colors rather than a cool t-shirt design. But when you incorporate them right, this color combo works well. The key to this, again like blue and orange, use subtly different shades of one or two colors to make the contrast seem less harsh.

Grey and Black

Classic grey and black are the color combinations that pair together really well on a t-shirt, which almost anyone would love to wear. But the common rule in the design world is that grey and black and white don’t go well together. So be aware.

Yellow and Off white

Typically yellow and white don’t make the best pairing. Both the colors are bright, and if there is typography on the t-shirt, it might be very hard to read. So, people usually rule out this color combo before trying them. However, if we take off-white as opposed to the traditional white, it can work. It offers a nice retro vibe, and the off-white shade makes it easier for the eyes.

Green, Green and Greener

“Avoid having too much green” Have you never heard anyone say that? Neither have I, but let’s get ready to start that. Let’s go”How much green is too much green?!” We can blend different shades of green to create a compelling t-shirt design. The secret is this method can work with any color. Using different shades of the same color is the best way to add intrigue to your design without throwing too many colors. As much as people make designs and the color theory a lot of it is simply up to the designer. So you can feel free to bend the rules here and there and use less traditional color palette in your next t-shirt design.

White effect on primary colors

Red and White

This is the best combination to make the design pop. Delicate linework gets seen the best if there is a strong contrast between the ink color and the t-shirt color. Any bright-colored ink on a white tee will or white ink on a dark tee will always look sharp.

Blue and White

Blue t-shirts are the best-selling ones and for a good reason. Blue is a calm and neutral color. Combining blue and white works well if you are looking to design a shirt with a water theme or in search of a calming color palette

Maroon and White

This combination too pairs well because of the high contrast between maroon and white shades. Maroon-toned shirts let the white pop, which is very helpful when a design has really delicate and thin lines.

Red, Blue, and White

When you portray this design in your mind, it may remind you of patriotic designs in the flags. But in reality, it works well on all sorts of designs. The primary colors of red and blue get balanced with the neutrality of white.

How about some Rainbow and bright colors?


Color is something that is totally fun to work with, so if you don’t want to limit yourself, why not try the 7-colors of the rainbow? But if you plan to use this in your designs, it’s advisable to consider the costs as the price to screen print is calculated on a per-color basis. If you are getting t-shirts ready for a fundraiser in order to make profits, stick to the 4-5 colors, and you can still have fun.

Bright colors

The neon shades and bright t-shirt design color combination might not be appropriate for campaigns and cause, but going bright is an amazing way to create a shirt that gives off energy and positivity.

Be it hot red or subtle yellow, or any other color you love! Remember colors have various psychological meanings. So, if you are designing a t-shirt for a cause, make sure the colors you choose are appropriate and do the work of conveying your message. And most importantly, make sure the graphics you create go well with the color combinations you choose. Before giving them for printing in bulk, it is absolutely necessary to have one of them printed to see whether it has worked as you wished. You can even print two or three color combinations and see whichever ever goes the best before giving it for final bulk printing. Check out All Time Design for more templates and inspirations.

November 10, 2020
10 min read
50 reads

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