Toddler Tees & Tatts

Mom Heart Tattoo Etsy Listing
Mom Heart Tattoo Etsy Listing

Ideas come to us when you least expect them and you need to jot them down before they’re lost! I’m going to take you through the thought process of one of my latest original Etsy listings that came to me last week.

Ideas Can Arrive Anytime

I arrive at the gym at 7:30 am and the pre-workout is just about to kick in. I usually think about how my workout will pan out for the day and decide whether I’m going to listen to an audiobook or some gangsta rap (100% accurate, I’m very contrasting). At this moment in time, I’m not thinking about the stresses of work, errands I need to do, and hopefully, if you ordered something from me on Etsy, it’ll be packed and ready to be shipped on the way to the office. For those of you who don’t know, I do work full-time and Mattmade is a pure side hustle.

Anyways, my mind is clear, minimal interruptions and when this happens I’m always ready to jot down any ideas that hit me. That morning, I wanted to create a tattoo shirt. Whether or not it was tatted bros at the gym that made me think of it or not, I don’t recall…I’d say it if it was, but that’s how our subconscious works, you may not realize you think of something based on your environment or if a good idea resurfaces without the clutter of everything else that’s usually top of mind.

The Idea was Simple

Ideas start simple, and it’s better that way because it’s easier to write down. I opened Google Keep on my phone and typed out “Mom tattoo”. Clichรฉ right? Sort of. I’ve been dying to use a new product that allows me to create premium quality temporary tattoos, and since matching sets are my jam on Etsy…I wanted to create a matching shirt and toss in some temporary tattoos that match. I don’t need to write that down, I’ll recall that when I hit the tablet later to sketch it out.

Expanding the Idea

It’s about 6:30 pm, I made it home, finished eating and I’m ready to get cozy for some sketching out. I visualize a classic heart with a small “mom” banner across it, you’ve seen it before. I chose this because it’s familiar and my novel twist is that I wanted to include the temporary tattoos.


I’m just trying to jump back into drawing, so take it easy on me. Luckily this listing is going to be made for toddlers, hopefully, they’re forgiving on my quality of design.

Sketching out the mom heart tattoo
Sketching out the mom heart tattoo

Refining the Drawing

If you look at any drawings in the early stages, it won’t look right, my drawings are no different. The good news is, I didn’t want perfectly clean lines, I wanted this to be truly hand-drawn, ya know, like a tattoo.

That’s the Fun Part

A lot of people (including myself), purchase some designs that they simply cannot design on their own. If you do that, you jump to here in the process. The thing is, creating something completely original is not only the fun part, it’s also the most rewarding. When someone purchases an item that started with a sketch, I’m so completely flattered every time I make that for someone. That’s a feeling that’s hard to replace.

How Will it Look Tho?

I could dig into file folders and find ideas that I spent time designing and when I drop them into a mockup of an item, I’m just not interested any more and I close the app and don’t take a step further. I don’t love every design I make, but the first step is to see how it will look. So that’s what I did below with a blank shirt stock photo below.

Matching mom heart tattoo shirt and temporary tattoo stock photo mock-up
Matching mom heart tattoo shirt and temporary tattoo stock photo mock-up

I Get Feedback

At this point, I usually post on my personal Instagram account through stories and get initial reactions from friends and followers. I gauge reactions (or none at all) and that helps me determine if I’m heading in a decent direction.

I’ll Run With This One

With this one, I want to get more lifestyle photos, not just the design on a shirt. I want to show off the tattoo and shirt together so I ran some tattoos and some shirts on my press at home. I decided to go for white shirts instead of black. After comparing the print in my creative space, I liked the white shirt much more.


Snapping pics of kids isn’t much different than trying to take a pic of pets, you win some and lose some. I was able to salvage some shots of the 50 blurry shots. They’ll work this time, however, I do need to reconsider my incentive plan for these lil superstars…I don’t think snacks and craft supplies are cutting it anymore.

And that’s how the matching mom heart tattoo and temporary tattoo set came to be. I hope to create more unique offers like this one and feedback is definitely welcome by sending me a message on Instagram, Facebook or right on Etsy!

If you’re interested in seeing this listing live, you can check it out here!