Do’s and Don’t for your Catalog


The front cover of your custom catalog is a statement about your company and needs to make you look astute about your graphic prowess and your (high) level of professionalism. First impressions count! The interior pages contain the “meat” of the catalog. It’s the items you sell.

no-brandingBrands are never mentioned. Why? Because most buyers accept what you tell them. Yes, a few brand loyalists might insist on what they’ve grown accustomed to or insist on; we’ll attend to their requests to the extent necessary. But even these customers will usually buy the brand you recommend -the one you prefer and for whatever reasons you please (availability, price, printability, transferability, embroider­ability, “hand.” finishing,  etc.).

styleStyle numbers are never mentioned . Why inform your competitors about what brand and styles you’re promoting, especially when deal­ing with buyers who are shopping prices? You’ll know what items you selected. If you need to insert style numbers for clarity, for customers’ purchase orders, or for your sales staff to use when writing orders, cre­ate your own alphanumeric codes, but do so i n such a way as to conceal the official manufacturer ‘s style codes.

iconsIconography or photos? Use an icon to indicate each section of gar­ment category or style. An icon of a T-shirt is self-explanatory, especially when the word to the right of it says, ”I-Shirts.”An icon can be a simple outline of the product or a solid silhouette. It makes referencing an item i n your catalog easy to locate. In the text for the item, show sizes and colors available and, if desired , brief descriptive copy (e.g.. 100% cotton, 50% cotton/SO% polyester.) For more varied categories such as golf shirts, the copy might indicate 100% pique cotton, hemmed bottom (or drop-tail back), woodtone (or matching color) buttons, etc. Photos obviously show your products well.


About Erik Mickelson

Erik Mickelson is the author of Northwest Custom Apparel's blogs. Erik has been with Northwest Custom Apparel since 1996 after graduating from Washington State University and is the founder of the Apparel Graphic Academy. Trained by the custom graphic apparel industry's best, Mark Venit, Erik brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the Embroidery Adventure blog. As they say, 'Experience is the best teacher.' We are proud to have Erik as part of our team!