Once you've been contacted by an account manager about having your custom hat created, you'll need to send us your artwork to put on the hat, and that can be a little tricky for some. Here at Headsweats we LOVE vector files. We have to love them, because that's what we need to use to have a design added to a hat.
What the heck's a Vector File?
Good question. To put it simply, a vector graphic use lines, points, and curves to create an image. This allows them to be saved with directions on how the image should be drawn, rather than how it looks. Because of these directions, we're able to change sizes and positions without losing any details. Common vector format files are: .ai (Adobe Illustrator), .eps (Encapsulated PostScript), or .pdf (Adobe Portable Document Format).
Vector Files differ from your typical Bitmap files in this way. Bitmap files are typically .jpg, .gif, .png, .tff, or .bmp formats. These graphics are created using pixels. Each pixel contains color information that when put all together form an image. Pixels combine together to make a grid of tiny color squares, so that if you were to zoom in on a picture you'd see them all. It's sort of like if you put a magnifying glass on your skin and then see all the tiny pores and cells that you can't see with the naked eye. This format is perfect for photographic images so you can get complex colors and shading options, but it's not so good for resizing and sending to a machine to draw. Those little pixels confuse the heck out of 'em.
So, if possible send us your artwork in a vector format. We can then quickly implement your artwork without any extra clean up, format change, or redesign. Now, if you can't get the artwork you want into a vector file, we'll still take it and get it properly designed for you, but we have to add an additional $50 design fee to get the file changed for our use. It pays to save in vector!
If you have a specific Pantone Color you'd like to use for the artwork, you'll want to send along the color code with your artwork. This way we make sure the color is exact to your specifications and doesn't come out looking different than imagined.
When sending us a non-vector file, you'll want it to be at a high resolution (300 dpi is more ideal than 72 dpi) and at a decent size. A two-inch square logo isn't going to reproduce as well as a five-inch logo and so forth. Basically, the better looking an image you can send us, the better we can get it reproduced.
Images and text adapted from “Vector vs. Bitmap Graphic - an Introductory Guide for Clients and Designers s” By Liz Fulghum, eastbywest.com