Cotton Like Candy

Our favorite event t-shirts (the comfortable yet affordable Hanes Tagless Tees) now come in light, vibrant shades called “coastal colors.”

Hanes tshirts in coastal colors

As a set, they do have kind of beach/island feel. The palette also reminds me of macarons or cotton candy. (Maybe I’m hungry.)

It’s just a happy set of colors that I could see putting a smile on the faces of your conference attendees, team, or customers.


Contact us to give your next conference or promotion a fresh look. We can even mix and match colors, so your merch table will be a pile of deliciously colorful goodness!



PS When we screenprint Hanes Tagless Tees, your favorite school can get box top credit!

Design as an Olympic Ambassador

How do you communicate something effectively and concisely to people who don’t share a common language?

Don’t rely on language.

Mexico 1968 Olympics graphic design

Wyman’s Wordless Wayfinding

The fact that good design doesn’t always require words is especially relevant at a major international event like the Olympic Games, where visitors who speak dozens of different languages are trying to find their way around.

“A person who doesn’t speak the local language is just as illiterate in a strange country as someone who can’t read at all. We’re all illiterate if we don’t understand how information is presented.”

–Lance Wyman


It was on this foundation that the 1968 Mexico City Olympics graphic design team, lead by Lance Wyman, built a system of pictograms and color coding into the event branding.

Mexico Olympics branding

Mexico City Olympics 1968 branding

Mexico City Olympics 1968 branding

Even with less translation, information became accessible to more people. You didn’t need to know Spanish or French or English, because coordinated tickets, signs, banners, and information kiosks would guide you to the right venue and all the way to your seat.

Mexico '68 Olympics ticket

“As Wyman says, ‘Graphic design became an important visual ambassador.’ […] The clear pictograms and distinctive colors […] helped to reinforce a sense of place and create a memorable Mexican identity.”

–Garry Emery


A Mark for a Modern Mexico

For all the non-verbal signage, the logo itself is the most text-focused of any Olympic City. The lines of the stylized “Mexico 68” were inspired in part by pre-Colombian Huichol art, yet the overall effect is mod 1960s.

Mexico 68 Olympics logo

“Has any design scheme so perfectly caught the graphic spirit of the times […] ? [Wyman and his collaborators] worked out a geometric fantasia of concentric stripe patterns that expanded to engulf a custom alphabet, groovy minidresses, and eventually entire stadia.”

Michael Bierut

Mexico Olympics dresses
Mexico City Olympics 1968 branding

Wyman went on to head up the design for Mexico City’s Metro, giving each stop its own pictogram.

Mexico Olympics branding

More information:

Mexico City Olympics 1968 branding

Images by Lance Wyman via Graphic Ambient.

6 Things To Know Before Getting Company Shirts Embroidered

Uniform shirts with a company logo give even a small business a more cohesive, professional look. Whether you choose polos, oxford-style button downs, or work wear, here are some things you should know before you get them embroidered with your logo.

1. Pricing is based on stitch count.

It takes more stitches to embroider a larger or more “filled in” design. The number of stitches required is the stitch count.

2. Embroidery machines work because of magical files.

Okay, maybe they’re not actually magic, but .DST files (or “tapes,” if you’re old school) have capabilities way beyond regular ol’ image files. They not only show how a logo should look, they contain the instructions directing the machine how to sew it, so it can automatically use the right color and stitches.

3. DST is not DIY.

Creating a DST (embroidery machine) file requires specialized knowledge and embroidery-specific software. Whoever is doing your embroidery (we recommend contacting us, obviously!), will be able to convert a vector art logo into a DST.

4. Converting your logo file to be embroidered is called “digitizing.”

This usually requires a one-time fee of $40-100, depending on the number of stitches. However, changing the size or design of your embroidery requires digitizing another file. Once it’s created, feel free to request it if you’d like to keep your own copy.

5. Shirt embroidery is often placed on the left chest, above the pocket (if there is one).

The size will usually range from about 2-3.5 inches wide, depending on the design. Really thin lines or small print can’t be embroidered.

6. Coordinating hats, jackets, and bags can make your team look even more together!

  • Hats: Most hats have a maximum embroidery size of about 2 inches, so think about using a simplified version of your logo or just one iconic element.
  • Jackets: Unlined jackets and windbreakers are great to keep your logo visible in cooler temperatures. Check out safety vests for high visibility or hoodies for more casual environments.
  • Bags: Many types of totes, duffels, messenger bags, laptop sleeves, and even luggage can be embroidered. Think about ordering extra for client gifts.

First photo by Justin Taylor. CCL.

Our Favorite Event Shirts

A conference tee that attendees don’t want to wear is a wasted opportunity.

However, a shirt that people are comfortable in is more likely to be worn again, even after the event is done. While past attendees are going about their daily business in their communities, those shirts are spreading the word about your event or organization.



Our top-selling t-shirt for conferences, camps, and other events is the Hanes Tagless Tee. It’s a great option for event organizers on a budget, because it’s both affordable and comfortable. We see people wearing them over and over. They are 100% cotton with lots of colors, sizes S-3XL, and no tags!  


Polo Shirts

Some organizers like to also order polo shirts for the event staff, volunteers, and/or speakers. The Hanes Comfortblend EcoSmart Jersey Knit Sport Shirt is a great complement to Hanes t-shirts. There are several matching color options, and we can screen print the same design on the polos as the tees to bring your costs down.


Education Program

Don’t forget that Hanes has a program for supporting local schools with your purchase.

Contact us to order shirts, swag, and signage for your next big event!



2 New Lightweight Hoodies

How’s the weather where you are? Even here in sunny Arizona, the mornings have still been cool.

These lightweight hoodies are perfect for spring – whenever it comes your way! Order now for your event, conference, or team!

1. Independent Trading Company Lightweight Jersey Raglan Zip Hoodie

A 4.5-ounce hoodie with colorblocked sleeves. Perfect for those cool-breeze days when you need an extra layer and want to keep it super light.


2. Hanes Nano Pullover Hoodie

We love that Hanes participates in the Box Tops for Education program, and they’ve really stepped up their game with the modern feel of this 7.2-ounce ring-spun cotton-blend hoodie. It also comes in a full-zip style.


T-Shirts to Soften a Hater’s Heart

When Athlinks needed new t-shirts screen printed in a hurry, we were glad to help them out! We ordered the women’s Bella+Canvas tees they already loved and suggested a complementary men’s style with the nice, lightweight fabric they were looking for. 

Even the Athlinks team member who is rumored to “hate everything” loves the super-soft, comfy tees and the way they fit!

And we’re back!

Hey! How have you guys been? Did you miss us? Well, we’re back.

Over the holidays, we had a chance to recharge and reflect, and we’re looking forward to what’s coming next.

Last year, we started narrowing the broad range of design projects we offered to focus more on screen printed and embroidered apparel, especially event t-shirts. We’ll be continuing in that direction.

In fact, we’ve already kicked off 2014 with t-shirts and hoodies for WordCampPhx, which starts today. More details on those later, but here’s a sneak peek of April trying on the volunteer hoodie.

It’s good to be back.

Holiday schedule

Bold Avenue will have a partial holiday shutdown from Tuesday, December 24 through Friday, January 10.

Here’s what this means:

  • If you have a project already in progress, it will continue within the timeline we’ve discussed. 
  • If you’re a current client and have something urgent come up, please call or text us.   
  • Otherwise, we’ll explore new projects and contact potential new clients after we re-open in January.  

We will be preparing for exciting changes in the new year and celebrating the season.

In the meantime, season’s greetings to you and yours, and we look forward to connecting with you in 2014! 

Tips for using your Evernote email on Tales of a Startup

Do you use Evernote for your business? I’ve talked to a lot of small business owners who have Evernote accounts but don’t realize how much they can do with them. It’s such a powerful tool, and it can be hard to know where to start.

For example, many don’t realize how taking advantage of the upload via email feature can make their lives easier.

It’s actually super easy to implement. To learn how, check out my post on how to quickly capture project information using your Evernote email address on Tales of a Startup today.

Mobile Design Presentation at BlogHer Pro

I was honored to speak on DIY Mobile Design Strategies with Myriam Joire at BlogHer Pro ’13 in Silicon Valley.

The presentation was geared towards people who want to use their blog for business but aren’t at the stage where they’re ready to hire a designer yet. The fact is that hiring a designer is smart when you’re ready to take your business to the next level, but, when you’re just starting out, there’s a lot you can do on your own to improve your design and content to translate better across platforms.

A few of the tips we shared that DIYers can put into practice:

  • Don’t be afraid of simple. Simple is good.
  • Remember people will be viewing your site with many different browsers, devices, and settings (and possibly in different languages), so it will probably not look the same to your visitors as it does to you.
  • Test your site on a variety of platforms. Use Google Analytics to see how people are viewing your site.
  • Make your content accessible to as many people as possible.
  • Choose easy-to-read fonts for the body of your text (blog posts, etc.) and left justify it.
  • Look for themes with “responsive design” in description.
  • Test mobile plugins out and have others try navigating your site to make sure no important functions are cut out.
You can view our slides (which were pretty minimal but include a resource list) and hear the complete audio of our presentation on SlideShare.


Update: You can also listen to the audio offline via “DIY Mobile Strategy” on divShare.