The Top Fall/Winter Fashion & Color Trends to Sell Now

Need some fashion inspo? We’ve got six of the top fall/winter apparel and color trends, including from puffer coats, cozy, textured fleeces, to preppy polos and wovens, to colors like burning red and cerulean blue. And of course, you’ll love our hand-picked product recommendations that make it easy to create a customized presentation for all of your clients.


Yes, outerwear should headline your cold weather presentations. But this season, jacket styles are about giving people a little extra, as evidenced by collections from Versace and Maryan Nassir Zadeh: oversized puffers and faux fur hooded outerwear, to unique faux leather bomber jackets to loaded-up performance styles. You’ll see jacket shades ranging from neutrals to vibrant colors. When you’re pitching outerwear, think function and fashion to check both important boxes for buyers. 

Styles We Recommend: First up, the North End Men’s Loft Puffer Jacket (NE708) and companion style Ladies’ Loft Puffer Jacket (NE708W) are sure to please with their fashion-forward, active fits. The jackets protect wearers in all weather conditions with water-resistant and Windsmart technology features. The jackets are made from easy care 100% polyester stretch jersey.

Try on a brand name puffer-style vest for even more versatility with the modern fit Spyder Men’s Pelmo Puffer Vest (S16642) and ladies’ style Puffer Vest (S16641), both made from 100% polyester nailhead weave fabric. Both styles have zippered hand warmer pockets, as well as a detachable hood with bungee cord and stopper. When you shop our Spyder offerings, you’ll see that from mountain to metro, every piece is thoughtfully designed to be comfortable and functional, giving wearers the best experience outdoors and beyond. 

Switching gears, we also love the Threadfast Apparel Unisex Bomber Jacket (395J), a vegan leather jacket made of 100% recycled polyester with PVC coating. The polyester fibers in this blend are made from recycled content including plastic bottles, which is important to buyers who want eco-friendly apparel. Perfect for everyone, for year-round wear!



For the last few years, textured fabrics have remained front and center for outerwear and layering pieces. Once again, tactile, warm fleece is a hot item for fall/winter, so be sure to present full-zip, vest and pullover options to all of your clients. Today’s fleece offerings are lightweight, breathable styles that look great and perform as functional warming layers.

Styles We Recommend: Well-known at retail, Columbia Sportswear is a global outdoor brand that crafts active lifestyle gear fortified by industry-leading technologies and reflective of the brand’s Pacific Northwest heritage and indomitable spirit. For a full-zip fleece style that goes from the trails to the trade show, we like the Columbia Men’s Steens Mountain™ Full-Zip 2.0 Fleece (3220), which  is made of soft 100% polyester MTR filament fleece, with zippered hand pockets and an elevated Columbia patch logo on the left chest.

Since we know you and your clients like Columbia (and fleece vests) as much as we do, take a look at the Ladies’ Benton Springs Vest (C1023), also made of warm 100% polyester MTR filament fleece, with zippered pockets and a brand name logo on the left chest. Ideal as a year-round, versatile layering piece!

Another popular sportswear brand we gravitate toward is Under Armour, a company most well-known for designing activewear that pulls sweat and moisture away from your body so it evaporates easily. Let’s take a look at Under Armour’s Men’s Hustle Fleece Hoody (1300123) and companion women’s Hustle Fleece Hoody (1300261). These stylish pullover fleeces are made from ultra-soft, midweight performance cotton with a brushed interior for extra warmth. The fabric wicks sweat and dries quickly, and has four-way stretch construction for better mobility.

If you can’t get enough of Under Armour and want to show a classic crew fleece style, look at the Men’s Hustle Fleece Crew (1302159) and companion style Ladies’ Hustle Fleece Crew (1305784), also made from soft performance cotton that wicks sweat and dries quickly. You’ll love the on-trend raglan sleeves and embroidered UA logo right on the chest.



Preppy polos and long-sleeve woven shirts are trending again, with designers from Prada to Miu Miu embracing country club wear’s clean lines and adding some edge. Pair these shirts with a shirt jacket or a bomber jacket for a touch of modernity.

Styles We Recommend: Enjoy a professional, active fit in the North End Men’s Jaq Snap-Up Stretch Performance Polo (NE100) and women’s companion style (NE100W). You’ll feel great in the breathable buttery fabric, with its moisture-wicking and antimicrobial performance properties. The Lenzing lyocell fabric these styles are made from is a sustainably sourced, renewable and biodegradable botanic fiber. The detailing provides a modern looklike a metal-snap placket closure that creates a unique neckline. The women’s style has a Henley collar and two metal buttons, along with a flattering high-low hemline. Perfect for uniforms or company stores!


If you’re looking for classic-fit, wrinkle-free wovens for him and her in a variety of colors and patterns, look no further than the Devon & Jones Crown Woven Collection. These easy care, button-down wovens are available in four different fabrics, and 26 different colors/patterns in Solid Broadcloth, Gingham Checks, Solid Oxford and Banker Stripes. In particular, the CrownLux Performance Men’s Micro Windowpane Shirt (DG540) and ladies’ companion style (DG540W) offer luxury, comfort and performance in one. The performance nylon fine shirting offers a crisp, professional look, while keeping you cool, comfortable and restriction free.

Add a layer of warmth and classic style with the Harriton Men’s Pilbloc V-Neck Sweater (M420) and companion ladies’ style (M420W). Designed not to pill, even after repeated washes, these essential preppy pieces are perfect for the office or a corporate event. Get this sweater in vest, cardigan or pullover styles to dress up or down, for maximum versatility.



With more in-office and in-person events becoming the norm again, designers are turning up the heat with bright reds and oranges. Two hot hues this season are a “burning red” and Pantone’s Orange Tiger. Designers like Anna Sui, Staud and Victor Glemaud embraced these bright “sun” hues in different garments, from a fur coat to a trench coat to a maxi dress. 

Styles We Recommend: The moisture-wicking Puma Golf Men’s Fusion Polo (596920) has an ultrasoft, cottony feel with the performance of polyester and a subtle heather texture. Get these polos in get-noticed shades like High Risk Red and Vibrant Orange to match client brand colors and events.



Pantone’s 2022 color, Very Peri, is still on the runways, from an oversized shirt dress by Proenza Schouler, to a belted A-line dress by Sergio Hudson. This intense purple shade, inspired in part by the metaverse, has sparked other popular shades. You’ll see royal purple, a classic fall jewel tone that hasn’t been in the spotlight for a few years. Designers like Blumarine and Bottega Veneta showcased this deep hue as both the main shade for coats or tops, or an accent color. Baby pink’s another shade you’ll see everywhere, especially since Valentino created an entire collection in the color. 

Styles We Recommend: Tie-dye patterning is still going strong, for wearers of all ages. Combine a pattern and color trend when you pitch the Tie-Dye Adult Tie-Dyed Pullover Hooded Sweatshirt (CD877) for him and her. Check out shades like Spider Purple, Cotton Candy and Desert Rose.



Let’s start with cool cerulean, a shade of blue between azure and a darker sky blue. Designers like Balenciaga and Stella McCartney showcased the rich sky hue in their collections. We’re also seeing a lot of bold, rich Kelly greens in shirts and outerwear. Finally, since jewel tones are having a moment, you’ll see lots of teals, including in collections from Blumarine. 

Styles We Recommend: It’s a great idea to find stylish apparel that’s also available in a variety of on-trend shades. The Core 365 Men’s Origin Performance Piqué Polo (88181) and companion style Ladies’ Origin Performance Piqué Polo (78181) come in True Royal, Acid Green and Electric Blue. This classic fit polo really performs, with moisture wicking, antimicrobial and UV protection.

What to Do Today

Once you’ve become familiar with this upcoming season’s popular apparel trends and colors, it’s time to find even more apparel and accessories that you can share with your excited clients. Here are some valuable tools you can use on the alphabroder website:

  • Catalogs: See our latest e-apparel catalogslike our 2022 Gift Guide and Promotional Apparel & Products 2023at a glance so you can see what’s trending. You can share our generic versions with your clients.
  • SalesBuilder: Want the power of an entire graphic design department in the hands of your marketing team and sales reps? Whether you’re making a one-page custom flier, apparel lookbooks or an entire presentation, you can use our premade templates to create professional templates that showcase the season’s hottest styles and colors.
  • High Stock Inventory Filter: When you use this feature, you can quickly find in-stock products in various styles and colors to present to your clients.

Why You Should Ask Your Customers to Slide Into Your Shop’s DMs

If you haven’t been encouraging your prospects and customers to slide into your DMs, it might be time to start. Private messaging is one of the most popular ways people communicate socially. Direct messaging gives buyers the opportunity to interact personally and one-on-one with brands they like, like your print shop. In the DMs, you can connect with prospects and customers to build better customer experiences – and stronger long-term relationships. 

“People like doing business with companies they like, know and trust,” says Kristine Shreve, director of marketing and outreach at Applique Getaway. “Having one person, or a few people specifically tasked with answering questions and replying to DMs allows your customers to get to know those people – and your shop. Don’t underestimate these connections that help new customers feel connected to your shop and trust they’ll be supported if they ever have a problem.”

If you’re wondering how to use direct messaging in social platforms like Facebook or Instagram, we’ve got you covered with this DM etiquette tips from the experts.


What Are DMs Anyway?

As the name implies, a direct message lets you talk directly to a person using a platform such as Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter in a chat or text setting. What’s especially effective is that you’re meeting them where they hang out.

For example, 200 million Instagram users look at one or more business profiles everyday. About 70% of those consumers on Instagram report that they use the app to discover new brands. More than 375 million people use Instagram Direct Message, and 75% of consumers want to interact with brands using DMs vs. phone or email. Using DMs is a powerful way for you to make connections with your customers.

Here’s an exciting stat: Instagram DMs are the most efficient way to increase income from sales at 56.8% — compared to 17.9% of sales due to follows, 10.3% to likes and 4.2% to comments. That’s because if a customer reaches out to you via direct messaging with a question or a problem, you have the opportunity to authentically connect with them, address any concerns and move them toward a sale, if they’re happy with their interaction.


How Does Direct Messaging Help My Apparel Shop?

If you’re not sure if DMs will help you reach new customers and nurture your current clients, consider the following:

  • DMs allow you to build connections by showing your customers your shop isn’t some “faceless online t-shirt business” that just takes orders.
  • DMs also let you increase brand loyalty by letting prospects see you as more of a solutions provider who’s there to help them achieve their marketing goals.
  • DMs allow people to place orders directly, even if you don’t already have an online shop. This, in turn, will increase your overall sales.
  • DMs also let your customers check up on orders that they’ve placed or ask questions about orders they’ve received. Some shops even use DMs to send artwork approval links to customers who prefer to communicate via direct messaging.
  • Finally, DMs allow you to connect with prospects and to overcome their objections or worries that keep them from becoming regular customers.

At first, it might feel a little bit cringey messaging into a follower’s DMs, or speaking to them in a manner with the ultimate intention to sell. But, neglecting this feature is doing you, your shop, and your bank account a major disservice. “SImply start by asking your customers how they like to communicate with you,” says Marshall Atkinson, business consultant at Atkinson Consulting and Shirt Lab Tribe. “If they prefer DMs and texting, then commit to what platforms you’ll use to interact with them, whether it’s Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter.”


So, How Do I Connect With My Customers and Leads?

When you’re using direct messaging to chat with potential and current clients, keep these tips in mind for the best possible outcome:

  1. Be available. “If you put out the marketing message that you want to interact with people on social media, you should absolutely have a rep monitoring your DMs on Facebook or Instagram,” Atkinson says.
  2. Don’t barrage the recipient with message after message. This makes it feel like pestering at best and spamming at worst. Instead, send a couple of high-quality messages to draw in the reader as opposed to dozens of light, meaningless messages. “No one likes a pushy salesperson or customer service rep,” Shreve says.

Pro tip: “Always let your prospects make the first contact,” Shreve says. “Never DM someone who hasn’t given you permission to message them.” However, if a person comments on one of your public posts expressing interest or a question, you can respond to their comment asking if you can DM them. If they say “yes,” feel free to DM them to start a conversation.

  1. Don’t make your message all about a sales pitch. Your first goal should be to make a personal connection and see if you can help them solve a problem. Let the sale grow organically out of that. “Plus, don’t make assumptions about who the person is or what they want,” Shreve says. “Ask questions, so you can get to know them better.”
  2.  Take your convo cues from your prospect. “If they’re short and to the point, follow suit,” Shreve says. “If they have lots of questions and want lots of information, supply it. Aim to build rapport and make the prospect or customer feel comfortable. Don’t be fake, but be adaptable.”


Don’t Break the Cardinal Rule: Always Respond to DMs

Not responding to someone’s DM is the equivalent of ignoring someone who comes into your shop and wants to ask a question or place an order. The way to keep in front of your direct messages is to have one more more staffers assigned to monitor incoming messages. 

Atkinson recommends giving your reps the right tools to interact efficiently in the DMs:

  • Pre-written answers to frequently asked questions.
  • A freebie white paper or video that teaches prospects how to build their business with decorated apparel and products (showing your work and case studies, of course).
  • A Calendly link with days/times you’re available to chat with a prospect about their project via Zoom or phone if they’re ready to convert.
  • Art approval links to send via DM for current clients. 
  • Easy access to your order system to check on a status or make changes for current customers.

But how can you field all the questions all day, every day? Try auto-responders. Almost every social media platform has its basic version of auto-responders, with Instagram Messaging automation having a more robust offering. This is a good place to start and spend some time, since on average 70% of incoming messages on social media are “pre-purchase.” The auto-responders provide basic information and collect personal details before transferring the prospect/customer to a live agent.


“When you automate responses, you can serve clients when they reach out and then connect them to a human when they’re ready to make the next move,” Atkinson says. “There are plenty of tools to manage DMs to interact with prospects and prospects, both automated and in person. This is an additional piece of the customer experience that you can assign to a rep.”


What Organic Ways Can My Shop Initiate DM Convos?

Not sure how to strike up a conversation with a total stranger on social media? If you’ve decided to use your social media accounts and direct messaging as a way to connect with prospects, it’s a smart idea to have a staffer interact with companies or people you’d like to have as clients. Here are a few ways to start a potential sales conversation with an ideal client.


  1. Respond to their stories! This might be the most natural way to start a new conversation with an ideal client. You should already be following a lot of your top prospects, so spend at least 10 minutes a day scrolling through their stories or posts and responding to them. You can send a reaction emoji if you prefer. The more personal and thoughtful the response you leave, the better you’ll create a rapport.
  2. Thank them for following your profile. Let them know their “follow” or “like” doesn’t go unnoticed and feel free to ask an open-ended question to get a conversation going in the comments.
  3.  DM them instead of commenting on their most recent post. Did their caption resonate with you? Tell them! Love the way they edit their photos? DM them about it. Sending a private DM as a fan, not as a cold call, is way more personable than leaving a generic comment on your ideal clients’ Instagram posts.


Use DMs to Benefit Your Print Shop

You can capitalize on DMs to enhance your customers’ experience and keep them loyal to your shop, including:

  • Answering prospects’ general questions about your shop, products, services and more.
  • Connecting with your ideal prospects in one-on-one conversations.
  • Allowing customers to place orders directly through DMs, even if you don’t have an online store.
  • Moving the order process along, including sending art approval links.
  • Responding quickly to customer comments and complaints.
  • Establishing potential partnerships with other businesses or with influencers who can help grow your shop’s online reach.

“Mention your social media profiles in every promotional or marketing piece and feature them prominently on your website,” Shreve says. “Don’t be afraid to tell people that the best way to contact you is through social media messaging. Then respond promptly when you are contacted via this method, and watch your loyal customer base and sales grow.”


The Best Ways to Add Glitter and Shine to T-Shirts

Ready to add glitter or shine to a customer’s logo or artwork? You’ve got a lot of options if you’re ready to get creative. 

For example, Broken Arrow T-Shirt Printing & Embroidery (@brokenarrowwear) offers screen-printed and vinyl foils, as well as glitters. “We prefer screen printing because it can be combined with other ink colors a little bit easier,” says Kortni Remer, general manager. “Our favorite designs combine standard ink colors with glitters/foils as an accent and an enhancement. Foils and glitters add dimension and enhance certain elements better than standard inks. The enhancement speaks for itself when you use it correctly – and just adds that special something to a design when people want to stand out.”

We asked three experienced shops to share the easiest ways to add some dazzle to client designs for truly custom artwork, without it looking like you broke out the bedazzler. See how to use screen-printed foils and more for cool effects.


Our Need for Glitter and Shine

Utica Coffee Roasting Co. wanted a bold design that would get local coffee drinkers’ full attention. Howard Potter, CEO of A&P Master Images, chose an on-trend oversize long-sleeve t-shirt to apply glitter vinyl for the “Wake the hell up!” message. “With a simple, one-color design on a black shirt, the silver glitter makes the apparel pop,” he says. The A&P team produced 72 pieces for this order, but they can easily create one-offs as needed for the client. 

Pro tip:With glitter vinyl, keep the design simple and not too detailed to make it easier to weed and mass produce it if needed,” Potter says.



Shining Like a Lady Boss

LaTonna Roberson, owner of T-Shirt Shop Dallas, creates eye-catching shirts for her Lady Print Boss Consulting brand that helps people start their own decorating business. The “Just Boss Everyday” t-shirt is a great example of a classic white print on a black t-shirt, but with a little shimmer. “I used the tone-on-tone method to create a nice, clean garment that has just enough shine to get attention,” she says.

The “BOSS” logo shirt is another favorite with Lady Print Boss clients and fans. “We used black shimmer vinyl and STAHLS’ CAD-CUT Metallic Heat Transfer Vinyl in gold for a bold look,” Roberson says. 



Shimmering for Special Occasions

Roberson created the “LaTonna” t-shirt for Mother’s Day using STAHLS’ CAD-COLOR Soft Opaque Printable Heat Transfer Vinyl. “Opaque printable vinyl is a great way to get full-color printing for small orders,” she says. “We sprinkled on rhinestones to give the shirt shine.” 

Roberson created this flashy shirt for a first birthday party. She used STAHLS’ CAD-CUT Chameleon for this eye-catching effect. “A white shirt is the perfect canvas for colorful prints,” she says. “You can also pair colorful prints with whimsical fonts to create a fun tee.”



All That Glitters

Broken Arrow does a lot of shirts for racing teams. So it was no surprise when Caravello Racing reached out to ask if a specialty ink would work for their splatter-skull design. “They wanted something different than the norm,” Remer says. “We decided to use glitter on their design as an enhancement, without bringing any ‘dance mom’ vibes.”

Remer’s team used red glitter as an outline for the team’s name, specifically keeping the lines fairly thin so the glitter didn’t overpower, but still would draw attention. “We loved the result because the glitter added a pop to the design, while keeping with the artwork’s vibe,” she says.

Here are Broken Arrow’s tips for applying glitter:

  • To hide inconsistent coverage with the glitter ink, use an underbase on your glitter that’s a similar color to the glitter. For example, red glitter gets a red under base. 
  • Use a lower mesh count to allow the flake to come through the screens. Remer uses a 40 count or lower mesh.
  • Print the glitter last in your print order. “If you must print something after glitter, make sure the other ink is fully dried,” Remer says. “Avoid wet-on-wet printing.”




The Gold’s in the Foil

Broken Arrow did a fun project for a 30th birthday party. The client originally asked for metallic gold ink. “We wanted to give the customer more reflection on sunglasses and halo, so we suggested foil instead,” Remer says. “The end result was a tone-on-tone print with a gold foil enhancement. We created a design that would look entirely different with standard or metallic inks.”

Remer offers her top production tips for screen-printed foils:

  • Add a foil-resist additive to your plastisol inks or use water-based inks, if you want to combine a screen-printed foil with other ink colors.
  • The adhesive is key. “We generally use a plastisol transfer adhesive and run it through an 83-mesh screen to get a smooth, thick layer of adhesive down,” she says.
  • Set up the artwork to allow for the adhesive and other inks to expand when you heat press the foil onto the shirt.
  • To apply adhesive, a 70/90/70 durometer squeegee works best.
  • Keep your dryer temp below 300 degrees to avoid curing the adhesive through the dryer. You’ll cure the adhesive when heat pressing.



Get Started Today

If you’re ready to add some glitter and shine to your clients’ t-shirts, start trying the techniques shared here today to create your own samples. Show off those examples in your shop, on your website, on social media and in your emails. Don’t hesitate to suggest adding some dazzle to text or an element in your clients’ next design. Sometimes, people are afraid to request glitter in their designs, but when they see how eye-catching it is, they’ll be on board.