Printing apparel for your business involves a wide variety of methods, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. Choosing the right one can make the difference between a successful and disappointing end product.
Traditional screen printing, also known as plastisol printing, is one of the most versatile garment decoration options available. This method involves the use of a mesh screen that is coated with an emulsion that hardens when exposed to light. Once the emulsion has dried, it’s ready for the design to be applied to the garment.
Plastisol inks are highly opaque, making them a good choice for achieving vibrant color ranges and fine details. They’re also easy to work with, and a wide variety of environmentally friendly, non-PVC inks are available.
Another popular option is thermal transfer printing, which involves the use of a heat transfer paper to transfer a design from a transfer sheet to the garment. This is a cheaper option than other methods, but it has its limitations.
First, the transfer paper must be pretreated to ensure that it will stick to the fabric of your custom tee. This process can be tedious and time consuming. Secondly, the transfer paper needs to be heated with a heat press or tunnel dryer to set the ink on the garment.
Direct to garment (DTG) printing is an extremely versatile option that offers a lot of benefits over screen printing. The main advantage is that it doesn’t require separations, films and screens — resulting in a more cost-effective and eco-friendly option for smaller production runs. In addition, DTG printing can be used on a wide range of fabrics, including polyester and poly blends, as long as the fabric is cotton. This means that you can offer a broader selection of fabric types, while still maintaining the ability to create unique designs and colors for your customers.
Lastly, the heat press must be strong enough to withstand the weight of the garment. Many heat presses aren’t made for dark fabrics, so a custom design can end up looking unnatural or unevenly matched against the shirt itself. If you’re a large company or business, you may want to hire a professional printer to handle your orders. Alternatively, you can look for a reputable printing company that can take care of your needs.