Artist Resources

How to Design for Leggings

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We are super excited to reveal our latest addition to the ever increasing Redbubble product range: leggings. From a design point of view, leggings are a little different from anything else we currently offer. To prepare for our launch to the public we want to make sure you’re all ready so you can begin filling your portfolios with many amazing designs for many amazing legs. Unlike a lot of our other products, your artwork will NOT automatically feed across to leggings, so each design will need to be individually uploaded and adjusted with care.

Before we start, let’s run down the legging stats:

  • Size: XXS-XL
  • Material: 82% Polyamide, 18% Elastane (Xtra Life LYCRA®)
  • Full print front side and back side
  • Stretch waistband

There are two ways to perfect your images for leggings:

  1. Standard Option – Upload a single artwork and position it in our uploader.
  2. Expert Option – Create a specific artwork using the below template.

And now, here is our quick play-by-play of how I uploaded my “Tropical Rose” leggings.

 Understanding the legging upload screen

  • The area within the dashed lines indicates the sew line for the XXS size.
  • The outer darker area indicates the XL size, artwork positioned within that area will be cropped on the smaller sizes.
  • The vertical dotted line that runs up each leg is a rough indicator of where the design splits between the front of the leg and the back of the leg. This will vary slightly across all sizes.

Standard Option

1. Uploading A Single Artwork

Upload your work using our new uploader as you normally do. Scroll down to leggings and click EDIT.

Take into account the shape of the leggings pattern. As we mentioned above, the shaded area shown below is the sew line for the different sizes, and the dotted line is the side of each leg.

If you upload one single image, the space between the two legs will be cut off. You have the option to slightly adjust your artwork to take this factor into consideration so you can make sure that the imagery you want is shown on each leg.

2. Pattern An Artwork

You may already have a pattern created that you would like to upload for as a repeat pattern on leggings. In this instance you will upload just like we outline above.

We also have made our new tiling function available for this product so you can easily take a single motif and turn it into an all-over pattern using the icons shown under REPEAT.

For more information on how to use the tiling feature reference this post.

Screen Shot 2015-02-05 at 1.18.13 PM


Expert Option

1. Download Our Custom Template

You can download this template and have a play with positioning artwork within the form of the leggings pattern. The template is a PNG file and can be opened though most programs. Soon, we’ll have Photoshop and Illustrator specific templates available for your use, as well and we’ll update once they’re available. Artwork designed with this template will allow you to make more complex works and take advantage of this unique product.

The zones are designed to help place your art. All areas inside of the GREY portion is the SAFE area for your designs. You can place art in the RED areas, however these might be cut off when different sizes are printed, XXS – XL, with the outer red area sized for XL. You can easily make designs that wrap around the leg and continue on the other side, just keep in mind where your work falls within the red areas and adjust for this.

Add Artwork – Paste or create individual layers onto the template. These can be moved or transformed in a way to suit the sewn shape of the leggings. A great way to use this tool is to design artwork for one leg then duplicate the layer and mirror it on the opposite leg. You will remove the background template image once you are finished designing on the surface.

Exporting – When you’re finished creating your design use FILE>Save for Web, and choose PNG24, and make sure the file dimensions are 4350px wide by 4032px high. Transparency optional.

When you upload, you will have something like the image above — perfectly positioned artwork on each leg with no need for scaling or moving around once uploaded. If you design an artwork to completely fill the pattern, a good extra step to take is to change the background color to closely match the artwork colors to make sure there isn’t any blank, white spaces isible during the sewing process.

2. Uploading for Experts

Again, upload your work, scroll down to leggings, click EDIT, but now you will hit the option that says REPLACE IMAGE and upload your special, template-ified leggings artwork.

"Tropical Rose" by Danielle Wood

If you need more help, check out out Leggings FAQ.

Please share you thoughts, designs, and any of your own tips in the comments below.

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