Aztec and chevron designs

Dig Into Sublimation Trends: Chevron and Aztec designs

Aaron Montgomery has been involved with the garment decorating and personalization industry since 2000 and the digital printing industry since 1997. He has been actively involved in the industry trade shows via speaking, attending and exhibiting for the last 16 years. He also writes articles for the industry magazines and blogs on topics that include marketing, social media, the personalization market, and garment decorating techniques. He is dedicated to helping small businesses grow and succeed. You can find Aaron co-hosting the industry's oldest and most listened to Podcast - 2 Regular Guys ( You can also find blogs about a wide range of topics on his own website at

You’ve probably heard about all the money that can be made with sublimation. Want to know how to make that happen for your business? Well, it can be as simple as digging into some of the trends out in the marketplace and taking advantage of them as a sublimator.

This particular design trend has been around for a little while, but is still very popular: chevron patterns. The great part about this pattern is that it is simple. Put a bunch of V’s together and you have it! Mix and match colors to the school you are sublimating for to create some instant hits. It has been around for decades but is just now really taking off. (Go take a look at Charlie Brown’s yellow T-shirt and see what pattern he has on it).

With the chevron craze in full swing, people have started to get a little more complicated, leaning toward the latest trend—Aztec patterns. These patterns are modeled after ancient Aztec images and feature bright colors, strong shapes, and unique patterns. Just like the chevron patterns, this is not really a new design style as it is actually a rekindling of an old design style. You can find textile pieces dating back as far as the 14th century that feature Aztec patterns. These patterns hit fashion design stages in 2009 and have slowly trickled their way into our personalized design libraries.

A sublimator I spoke with in a sublimation Facebook group told me much of her business comprised of many kitchen-related items with chevron and Aztec prints on them. “I sold tons of kitchen-related items over Christmas—coffee mugs, cutting boards, cake pans, pot holders, and oven mitts,” says Amanda Peek Seidal of Western Kentucky. Other sublimators have told me that Aztec prints on cell phone cases is all they have time to make due to the high demand. Further, they are getting more calls for the 3D-style cases using a vacuum press.

—Aaron Montgomery, 2 Regular Guys, MontCo Consulting