Custom Skateboard Design: How To Make It Unique? (Your Step-by-Step Guide)

Learn to design a skateboard that showcases your style with our easy guide.

As a street skater, I’ve seen the fierce debate on choosing the right gear, especially when it comes to decking out a ride that represents your style. People usually overlook the importance of a top-notch deck, but it’s pivotal because it’s the canvas of your skating persona. Find your fit by exploring some of the best skateboard decks for street skating.

In this post, you’ll learn how to create a custom skateboard design that stands out at the park.

If you are a visual learner, check out this video titled ‘Design Your Own Custom Skateboard!!! D.I.Y. Part 2 | Going Nowhere Ep.012’

A video titled “Design Your Own Custom Skateboard!!! D.I.Y. Part 2 | Going Nowhere Ep.012” from the “Nowhere Land” YouTube channel.

Key takeaways

  • Express your style by customizing your skateboard with personal designs.
  • Pick the right materials and apply them carefully for a durable design.
  • Seal your artwork to protect it from the wear and tear of skating.

How to create a custom skateboard design

Creating a custom skateboard design allows you to express your personal style and stand out on the street or at the park. It’s a fun process that brings your creative vision to life on your board. Let’s dive into each step to craft your unique ride.

Featured image for a blog post called custom skateboard design how to make it unique your step by step guide.
Featured image for a blog post called custom skateboard design how to make it unique your step by step guide.

Step 1: Gather inspiration

Before you start sketching or choosing colors, spend some time gathering inspiration. Check out the artwork and designs on boards at skate parks, browse online galleries, and even look beyond skateboarding for patterns and graphics that catch your eye.

Step 2: Choose your components

The deck itself is your primary canvas, but the components like trucks, wheels, and bearings all play a part in the design. Decide on your setup by considering functionality and aesthetic, ensuring your design works well with the parts you select.

Supplemental image for a blog post called 'custom skateboard design: how to make it unique? (your step-by-step guide)'.
Supplemental image for a blog post called ‘custom skateboard design: how to make it unique? (your step-by-step guide)’.

Step 3: Sketch your design

Now, get your ideas down on paper. Don’t worry about being perfect; this is just a draft. Consider the placement of your artwork—will it cover the whole deck or just a section?

Think about how your design looks when the board is on its wheels and when it’s flipped over.

Step 4: Select your materials

Determine the materials you’ll need for your design. Will you be using spray paint, stencils, stickers, or markers? Each material can have varying effects, so choose based on the look you’re aiming for and be sure they’re suitable for use on a skateboard.

Step 5: Prep the deck

Before applying any design elements, it’s crucial to prep your deck. Clean the surface and sand any rough areas to create a smooth base. A primer might also be necessary, especially if you’re painting, to help your design stick and last longer.

Step 6: Apply your design

Start applying your design based on your chosen materials. Take your time and ensure each element is placed precisely where you want it. If you’re painting, work in layers, letting each one dry completely before adding to it.

Supplemental image for a blog post called 'custom skateboard design: how to make it unique? (your step-by-step guide)'.
Supplemental image for a blog post called ‘custom skateboard design: how to make it unique? (your step-by-step guide)’.

Step 7: Seal and protect

Once your design is dry and you’re happy with how it looks, apply a clear sealant to protect your artwork. This will help your design withstand the wear and tear of skateboarding, keeping it vibrant and intact as you shred.

Step 8: Assemble your board

Now that your deck is complete, it’s time to assemble the rest of your board. If you’re not confident in your skills, a skate tool can be a valuable resource. Attach your trucks, wheels, and bearings, and make sure everything is secure before hitting the pavement.

My favorite complete skateboard (at the moment):

Enjoi Whitey Panda Complete Skateboard

Custom skateboard design: how to make it unique? (your step-by-step guide) | 61vn95mf7ql. Ac sl1184 | skateboard salad
My favorite complete skateboard (at the moment):

Enjoi Whitey Panda Complete Skateboard

I had my board stolen a few years ago and was forced to quickly replace it with a complete. I got one with an Enjoi deck and loved it so much that I still buy the Whitey Panda deck each time I need a new deck. This complete with budget-friendly, beginner-friendly parts, but I still swear by it.

More custom skateboard design tips

Creating a custom skateboard design isn’t just about aesthetics; it’s also about making a board that’s uniquely yours. Here are a few extra tips to ensure your design process is as smooth as a kickflip on a well-waxed ledge.

  • Research current trends in skateboard art to make your design relevant.
  • Use high-quality images if you’re transferring digital designs to make sure they’re not pixelated.
  • Consider the color of your grip tape as it can complement or contrast your design.
  • Remember the placement of your design might be affected by trucks and wheels.
  • Think long-term about how the design will look as it gets scuffed and scratched.
  • Be mindful of the cultural significance of symbols or text in your design.

When it comes to dos and don’ts, they can greatly affect the outcome and longevity of your custom skateboard design.

Test materials on a small area firstRush the drying process
Use a protective mask if working with fumesOverload the design with too much detail
Follow safety guidelines when using toolsUse low-quality materials
Allow ample time for the design to dryIgnore the grain of the wood
Keep the workspace well-ventilatedForget to seal your finished design

Sealing your design not only protects it but also ensures that your style stays intact, whether you’re grinding rails or cruising down the street.

Advantages and disadvantages of custom skateboard design

Personalizing your skateboard has its perks and pitfalls. Understanding these can help you make informed decisions and end up with a board that’s both functional and a piece of personal expression.


  • Your board will have a unique look that reflects your personality.
  • It can be a fun DIY project and a creative outlet.
  • A custom design can increase the emotional value of your skateboard.
  • Personalizing your board may inspire you to ride more usually.


  • Time-consuming process that requires patience and skill.
  • Potential for design to wear down or chip with heavy use.
  • Mistakes in the DIY process can lead to more costs.
  • May not have resale value compared to a standard board.

“Personalizing your skateboard has its perks and pitfalls. While it’s a time-consuming process that demands patience and creativity, the end result is a unique piece that’s a reflection of your own artistic vision and style.”


As someone who’s pretty handy with a set of trucks and a wrench but not exactly Da Vinci with a paintbrush, I think the key to nailing a custom board design is to have fun with it. I’ve got friends who’ve thrown some sick graphics on their decks, and it truly makes their board feel more personal. But, keep in mind this is just my take; I’m no pro when it comes to design.

For those of you like me who might need a bit of guidance, check out how to repair your skateboard which might not only save your session but inspire your design process too.

In my opinion, custom designs really pump up the motivation to skate. Catching a glimpse of your own rad design while pulling off a clean ollie or a smooth grind just feels rewarding. Plus, it’s a conversation starter at the skatepark.

Just steer clear of biting someone else’s style; let your board tell your own tale. After all, it’s not about being the next Andy Warhol; it’s about making your mark.

Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

Can I create a custom skateboard design without artistic talent?

Absolutely, there are plenty of ways to customize your skateboard even if you don’t consider yourself an artist. Decals, stickers, and cut-outs are great alternatives that can give your board a custom look without having to paint or draw by hand. It’s all about personalizing your ride in a way that reflects what you love.

How do I keep my custom skateboard design looking fresh?

Keeping your custom skateboard design looking sharp is all about maintenance. Use a protective clear coat to seal your artwork and touch it up as needed. Remember, skateboarding is rough on your gear, so wear and tear are inevitable.

Embrace the battle scars—it shows you’re shredding right.

What should I consider before putting a design on a new skateboard?

Before decking out your new skateboard, think about your design’s longevity and how it will hold up to your skating style. If you play rough and tumble with rails and ramps, high-wear areas might not be the best place for intricate designs. Go for bold graphics or colors that won’t lose their impact when scuffed.

Final thoughts

Wrapping up, diving into custom skateboard design is more than just an artistic endeavor; it’s a way to make your board an extension of your personality. Whether you’re slapping on some stickers or meticulously hand-painting graphics, your board becomes a unique piece of functional art. Remember, the streets are like galleries for skaters, so get out there and display your masterpiece.

Have you ever designed your own skateboard or thought about it? Did I cover everything you wanted to know?Let me know in the comments section belowI read and reply to every comment. If you found this article helpful, share it with a friend, and check out my full blog for more tips and tricks on custom skateboard design. Thanks for reading and keep pushing your creativity on and off the board.

Steven Portrate
Written by Steven Sadder, Staff Writer

Hey! I'm Steven, a lifelong skater, and proud New Yorker. I’ve been skating since I was a teenager. I may be a bit older now, but I'm not slowing down. Follow me for skating tips and latest gear reviews.

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