How to Design Your Own Snowboard

What You'll Need
Your choice of images, text, and/or graphics
Design software (optional)
Snowboard manufacturer who makes custom boards
Drawing paper and colored pencils

With some help from technology and your own creativity, it is both easy and fun to design your own snowboard. Snowboarding is a sport that values individuality, and having your own unique design on your board is a great way to express this. With some planning ahead, this project result in your own, one of a kind, snowboard.

Step 1 -- Plan your Design

It is always advised to draw out your design ideas ahead of time. Think about what you want to express and what you want your snowboard to say about you. Some starting points could be art you like, scenery from where you enjoy snowboarding, or significant events in your life; the only limit is your imagination. Some inked snowboarders even draw creative inspiration from tattoo designs, whether their own or others. Use colored pencils for this step, to give you a better idea of what the end result will look like, unless of course you are planning a black and white only snowboard design, which can be striking in and of itself. You will probably go through several drafts, which is all part of the creative process. Those with the software and know-how can design their snowboard with a computer program such as Adobe Illustrator or OpenOffice Draw.

Step 2 -- Choose Board Size and Model

Decide on which length, width, and model of snowboard you want. Depending on its dimensions, you may have to refine your design a bit, so that it will fit with the board size in the best way possible. If you run into problems making it fit and don't want to hire a professional graphic designer, try enlisting a local graphic design student for some help; you can always offer to be a future job reference in exchange.

Step 3 -- Research and Choose Manufacturer

More and more snowboard manufacturers are bringing custom designs to life, and it is important to do your research in order to pick the best one for your idea. Look at several snowboard makers' websites to answer the following questions: Do they accept your own drawn design, or do you have to choose from their pre-selected templates? Do they have a design area right on their website, where you can upload your design and preview it on a snowboard? Do they allow you to scan and e-mail your drawings, or upload your finished digital drawings?

More established and reputable snowboard manufacturers who do custom designs, should have at least one of the above features. Be sure to read any available testimonials from past customers. Price is also a factor to consider; many custom designed snowboards can be expensive, especially if your design is printed onto the board. Some manufacturers offer the less expensive option of making your design into an adhesive wrap for your board, similar in durability to a vehicle wrap.