New Free Design Tool Kittl vs Canva
NOTE: This post does contain affiliate links. Hey everyone I am back with a hot tip on an awesome, graphic design tool Kittl (formerly known as Heritage Designer). A few weeks ago, I discovered Kittl after watching a tutorial on Zen Watercooler’s channel (which I often recommend). If you’re on my brand new newsletter, this name will be familiar to you. It was my 2nd ever recommended tool!
As I live for finding new creativity tips, tools and tutorials, I immediately signed up using Zen’s link, and became hooked!! (You can use my link to grab a free 3-month Pro Trial here – no CC needed!)
In this post, thought I’d tell you a bit about what Kittl is and isn’t, as well as its similarities to Canva. Today’s overview won’t be exhaustive, as I’ve only been using Kittl for a few weeks…but it will give you some background on both tools’ various features. I can safely predict that this is only the first blog post about Kittl…and it will not be last. To say I love it, would be an understatement.
So What is Kittl?
Kittl is a browser-based, template designer, which has thousands of editable templates. As it’s cloud and browser-based, there’s no software to instal. Yes, that does sound just like Canva – which was one of the main reasons I signed up. I wanted to give it a test drive was to see how they compare.
How are Canva and Kittl Similar?
- Like Canva, Kittl has thousands of of professionally-designed templates (Canva has over 250,000 FREE templates and there are more than 420 thousand on PRO, but hey, it’s been going for a dozen more years, so that’s to be expected!)
- Both tools allow you to quickly and easily create graphics for your social media, invitations, t-shirts, mugs & merch, cards, labels, posters etc.
- Not a fan of templates? That’s cool. Again, both tools, allow you to skip the templates and start projects from scratch.
- You can essentially build designs using text and elements in their respective libraries.
- There is the ability to choose from a set template size or indeed custom dimensions in both programs as well.
- Designer-wise: both Kittl and Canva have template designers that you can follow and can “heart” (Kittl) or “star” (Canva) individual designs. Additionally, Kittl allows you to comment on the individual templates too.
- As they’re both cloud-based, neither requires any additional software installation and each platform saves and stores your designs automatically.
- Kittl is currently only on the web – so you’ll want to use on a laptop or desktop. Canva has desktop apps (PC/Mac), mobile apps and runs in web browsers.
- You can (and should) name your designs in both tools. (I wish I was better at it in Canva, but over 8 years later, I’ve got thousands of designs that are poorly named. Thankfully I am not making that mistake in Kittl!)
- Discovering latest template designs: Kittl has its own newsfeed and Canva has ‘Discover Templates’.
- You can upload your own fonts – in both programs – if you’re on a Pro account.
Let’s Talk About Text, Baby…
You can do cool things to your text in both programs – e.g. shadow, curve, hollow etc.
However in Kittl, the text effects are out-of-this-world-awesome. By that, I mean you can do cool customisation – distort, transform, angle, rise, wave, flag, arch – as well as add different styles of shading and decoration.
If you like textures, these can be added easily to both your fonts and over all designs (eg. the backgrounds).
And man, don’t even get me started on the ligatures and glyphs*. All this makes Kittl, well, pretty mind-blowing.
To be honest with you, I am still getting the hang of transforming text, and am not so good at it…
Anyone with an Adobe background, or some of the other higher end tools, will no doubt find these text customisation options a breeze (e.g. simple and fast!) I can be a little, um, slow…
So while you can do some neat effects in Canva (curve, shadow, hollow et al), you don’t have the same sorts of control and customisation that you do in Kittl. Well, you can do most things in Canva, if you find a ‘work around’…it’s just going to be a bit more time consuming as a guess.
Point to Kittl for this round (for now, at least).
Both tools operate under freemium models – which means they each have FREE memberships and PRO memberships.
A Bit About Kittl’s Subscription Prices
Kittl has one addition to their Free and Pro memberships, called “Expert” membership. (Kittle Memberships are here).
KITTL Free: A free account gives you 10 projects to work on. The FREE account won’t really suit you if you’re trying to do t-shirts and merch. It will be suitable for your everyday web and social graphics. Plus if you want to get more projects, you simply need to use your “invite friends” link and when each person signs up, you get another free project. This referral ability gives Kittl a sort of gamification angle – which I’ll save that for another post. (There’s more than just “free projects”).
Kittl Pro: membership seems like it would make the most sense for those creatives who want to use it to design t-shirts, mugs, books etc each month (up to 50 projects).
Kittl Expert: is going to be the best option for the hardcore designers out there, that need more space and unlimited projects.
Which one makes sense to you?
Why not use my link and grab yourself 3 months of Pro for Free?
Canva has a few different membership types: Free, Pro Enterprise as well as non-profits and education options. You can find all the various options and features on the Canva Pricing page. Also, if you fancy a FREE, 45-Day Canva Pro test drive, please use my special affiliate link.
A few ways that they are different
As I already mentioned, compared to Kittl, Canva has way more templates and indeed doc types and styles, but it’s been going for many more years, so that’s only to be expected.
The templates on Kittl, at least at the point of recording this tutorial are more intricate by comparison. Many, to me, seem a little more, well, professional overall.
In both cases, you can sort of tell the templates apart if you were compare Canva templates to Kittl templates and that’s a good thing. For example let’s compare the basic logo templates on each.
To be fair I could chose to filter Kittl’s logos and select “minimal” under filters and then they would then be more similar.
At this moment, you can do much more in Canva…
For example: you can save your brand kit in Canva (even on the FREE version, you can save three branding colours. With Pro, you can have multiple brand kits).
I did hear that’s coming to Kittl which will be a welcome relief, as I’ve now done about twenty five designs in Kittl and having to manually add my brand colours each time is, well a pain.
I mentioned doc types earlier. In Canva, you can create presentations, quick animations – by animating text, images or even by adding memes, and videos.
In Kittl, they have sections for logos, labels, t-shirts, posters and cards.
That’s not to say you can’t do other doc types, for example a book cover or perhaps a business card, those options I mentioned are just the ones they highlight. (You could always choose “custom size” as I stated above.)
Which is better – Canva or Kittl?
Honestly, I don’t think there’s a clear answer to this one, because it depends on what you’re using each tool for. It’s raspberries and strawberries – both berries but very different types!
When it comes to creating awesome text effects fast, for me Kittl wins. The same goes for t-shirts, I think.
If it is a presentation, a video, a book and so forth, then it would be Canva without a shadow of a doubt.
For me, personally, I have been using them both, interchangeably, all day ever since I joined Kittl.
Do you like FREE things? Go ahead and sign up now using my link and get three months of Kittl Pro – no CC required!
*As a non-designer, I had to google what those even were.
Before you go…
I sure hope you like the look of this new free design tool Kittl…As you can tell, I sure dig it. If you are a creative into learning about new tips, tools and tutorials be sure to sign up for my free newsletter – “Thea’s One Thing”. It’s just me sharing ONE special link every Thursday. Also, swing on by my ever-expanding links page for a few dozen tools, apps, sites, resources for businesses and creative types.