The twin technologies of the internet and digital printing now make it possible to produce short-run t-shirts, calendars, mugs and even books at unbelievably cheap prices.
So here are three ideas.
1. A great way to say thank you
Produce a personal calendar, with your message on the front and with 12 full-colour illustrations, one per month, with somebody’s name in fireworks lighting up the sky, written in sand on the beach, spelt out in a topiary hedge, in the clouds, etc. etc. This costs just £14.95; you can choose A4 to hang on the wall or desktop size; the 12-month year can start with any month; and the calendar can be with you in 5 days.
Or you can produce your calendar with a message such as SAVE THE WHALE or EAT ORGANIC.
You can also produce personalised mugs for £9.95.
Use these as gifts to say thank you to your trustees or to a valued adviser or supporter…or to someone who has been an important influence on you… or to a teacher… or to anyone deserving of a big thank you.
2. A short-run book
Using LuLu.com you can publish a book in electronic or printed form. If you opt for printed copies, you need not produce more than a single copy.
Next time you are asked to give a talk, produce a book or pamphlet of your talk, even with a nice cover and illustrations. Wave it around as you speak. You will be an instant expert.
Or do the same for any subject you are passionate about. Collect together facts and figures, world-changing ideas, case studies of people who are doing something, set out a manifesto for change. Write a press release and send out review copies. People can order it off the LuLu website either in printed or electronic formats. You don’t need to do anything to fulfil orders, and you can even collect a royalty.
Produce your own book by uploading text and illustrations, and then designing it yourself on the LuLu website: www.lulu.com
3. Put it on your chest
Produce personalised t-shirts, with a message. There are a range of fonts to choose from. Upload your own images or select something suitable from a gallery. Create your own design for the back as well as he front. Then choose the colour and size of a “Fruit of the Loom” brand t-shirt, and order one or several.
From £11 per t-shirt. Order from: www.comboutique.com