Custom Ink News & Events

7 Reasons to Visit a Custom Ink Store or Make a Virtual Appointment

Posted By Kate Degen

It’s great to be able to customize t-shirts and gear online in our Design Lab, but we also have Custom Ink stores. When you stop into one of our stores or make an appointment, you can check out our products and get one-on-one help with a designer. Both in-person and virtual help can give you the confidence you need to order your next custom product. Below are seven reasons why you should visit us or make a virtual appointment, and the precautions we have in place to keep you safe if you visit a store.

7 Reasons to Visit a Custom Ink Store or Make a Virtual Appointment

  1. Touch, see, and learn more about our products
  2. We have so many t-shirts, face masks, sweats, and exciting products to choose from, that it might be hard for you to figure out exactly what you want online–and that’s ok! When you book an appointment with us, you can tell us what it is you’re looking for and we can help you narrow down products by fit, color options, materials, and more. Whether you need something in the perfect shade of teal or a shirt that will fit a group of all ages and sizes, no one knows our products like our store reps. For both in-person and virtual appointments, swatch books are available so you can see the colors and fabrics of shirts you’re considering. According to Preston Mercer, Store Manager at our Dallas store, “we also ask about the kind of shirts you like to wear, what you’re currently wearing, and what’s in your wardrobe–the brands, to help us narrow down what you’re looking for.”

  3. Get expert design help
  4. Not an artist? No problem. We can help you bring your vision to life, or even come up with a vision! Our store reps know the ins and outs of great t-shirt design and can help you with selecting art, fonts, and ink colors that will really pop on the color product you choose. Fun fact: before Preston was a store manager, he worked in production for Custom Ink, so he’s a pro at the ins and outs of what goes into making a great t-shirt. He feels like he’s seen a lot of shirts throughout his life that he wishes were better–such as shirts for sale at a brewery or shirts for an event that just miss the mark. In his role, he’s proud to help customers make something that everyone loves.

    “What I like to do is have the ability to help them make choices that really match their community so the design is elevated, the product is elevated, and overall the community is a lot happier with the options they have,” he says. “I want you to make a shirt that everyone keeps in their closet forever. Shirts are available almost everywhere for any reason but there’s only a few shirts that stay in my closet – because what’s on it means a lot to me and the design represents that meaning in a great way.”

  5. It’s fun!
  6. Who doesn’t love to get their creative juices flowing? An appointment with Custom Ink means looking through tons of great products, selecting colors you love, and coming up with a design that will bring you joy. When you tell us more about your group or event, we’ll help you brainstorm funny sayings, unique themes, and witty designs to put on your shirts. We like to think that by the time we’re done helping you create your custom products, it’s like you just spent an hour with friends.

  7. We can help you from anywhere
  8. Whether you’re practicing social distancing and still want help, or you don’t live particularly close to a Custom Ink store, our virtual appointments bring us to you. We can set up a video call with you so that you can show us shirts you like to wear, and we can show you products we have in store. We can easily hold them up to the screen and with our swatch books, you can see the vast range of color options to pick from. Working face to face from afar still gives you the benefit of working with a rep where you can discuss design ideas and fun slogans to put on a shirt.

    If a single face to face appointment isn’t exactly what you need, we can set up your appointment to be a phone call where we go over the initial things you’re looking for. Then, we’re happy to chat with you again and again until we’ve found the design and product you want. According to Preston, virtual visits can work for anyone and can save a lot of back and forth via email. And, you still get to collaborate with us so you can be confident in your final product selection.

  9. We love to work with you
  10. “We’re probably the coolest nerds you’ve ever met–we’re real people, we’re not just salespeople here to help you place an order,” says Preston. “We want to get to know you and want you to get to know us. That’s what we like to do and it’s why we’re in the business we are–we want to know you and your group or organization and what makes you all special.”

    One of Preston’s favorite memories is when he first started working in-store. A customer came in who was going on a family skiing trip and wanted to customize t-shirts to make the occasion extra special. Since her kids and their friends were coming along, it needed to be something to fit multiple personalities. She and Preston sat to discuss what the trip would be like, to which she said there would be skiing, and some drinking. They brainstormed ideas by starting with a mountain design and throwing different elements together. They were having so much fun that another rep overheard and came to join in and help. Together, they came up with a “whiskii on the rocks” design.

    “I was blown away. We all came together and came up with this wonderful design and she was thrilled, she was just so happy,” says Preston. “That was one of my first experiences that I was like ‘man what we’re doing here is just so special.’” One of the best parts, he adds, is how fulfilling it is to know that the shirts will get printed and shipped off to customers, and that they get to open them and relive the excitement all over again. “She’ll get to see her family in them, and the shirt is what they get to take away after that vacation–it’s the reminder of that trip.”

  11. We’re committed to your safety
  12. Given the current public health crisis, we’ve made some modifications to our appointments to help keep everyone safe in the fight to slow the spread of COVID-19. What’s changed and what are we doing?

    • Appointments are strongly encouraged to make sure we have a spot for you if you’d like to visit us in-store. Virtual appointments are also now available in case you’re more comfortable working with us from home.
    • Store reps are wearing masks during your appointment and can wear gloves by request. We also have a partition at our front desk and sanitize our payment pin pad after each transaction.
    • Stores used to have two stations for appointments and now we only have one in order to ensure distancing.
    • We’re asking that you limit your appointment to two guests. But if you have a situation where you need more people, please contact us and we can discuss how to accommodate you.
    • When you arrive, we’ll ask you to wait at the front of the store to make sure everything is ready and sanitized for your visit.
    • Instead of browsing the store, we’ll bring the products you want to see to your station so you can see and feel them. Any products touched during an appointment are steamed and sanitized before the next appointment.
    • We now offer face masks that you can customize for your group. You can see some of these mask options during your appointment, or you can personalize them online.

  13. We can help you navigate celebrating your group from afar
  14. We understand it’s hard to be away from friends and loved ones right now–but that doesn’t make your group any less worth celebrating! We’re here to help you customize gear to make sure you still feel united and proud, wherever you all are. How can we do that?

    • Group order forms–Our Group Order Form is a great way to customize and get your t-shirt to your whole crew. Everyone can place their own orders, find and enter their sizes, and pay for their items.
    • Individual shipping–when you use our Group Order Form, everyone can have their items shipped directly to their homes–which is a win when you can’t be together!
    • Creative care packages–looking to lift spirits? We can help you come up with a personalized care package to send to your staff, team, or family. Preston’s favorite products right now? Something fun like flip flops. “You could never wear these before and now you can work in flip flops.” And, coffee mugs. “Because who isn’t drinking a gallon of coffee a day now?” Other great items are blankets and hoodies for staying cozy at home and mouse pads or stress balls to set up a productive at-home office environment.

    How can we help you today? Get started with our store reps by booking an appointment in-store or virtually. We can’t wait to help you come up with the perfect custom gear for your group. If you want to browse before your appointment, check out our selection of t-shirts and face masks.


Kate wants her work to impact the little but important moments in people’s lives—like birthdays, anniversaries, and family celebrations. She loves coming up with witty copy that might inspire someone to create an awesome t-shirt!

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