Printing Techniques for T Shirts, Hoodies, Working Clothes
When it comes to printing on clothing, there are a number of different techniques that are used ranging from the traditional methods such as screen printing and embroidery, to newer techniques such as DTG, Vinyl, and Heat Transfer.
All the techniques have pros and cons when printing depending on the requirements such as needing full colour prints, single colours, complex images or photos, and the quantity needed. The current most popular is still screen printing and direct to garment printers (DTG), but the others are still popular printing methods.
Screen printing is the oldest technique that has stood the test of time. This technique offers the lowest costs for printing but only if a large quantity of the same design is needed. It involves burning your image onto a silk screen and using a squeegee to press the ink onto the garment.
It can get messy and each seperate colour needs a seperate screen so the setup time and costs are quite high.
Direct to Garment Printing – DTG
DTG or Direct to garment printing involves using a special printer that will print direct onto t shirts along with other clothing, wood, caps etc. The clothing moves using a special bed while the print head prints ink straight into the fibers of the material.
The resolution of print and speed of direct-to-garment printers has increased significantly over the last 8 years however this is still best used on cotton fabrics or cotton blends. Although it is possible to print onto dark fabrics the pricing increases due to the application of a base layer before printing.
Transfer printing uses a vinyl material to transfer your designs onto the T-Shirt or garment using a commercial heat press. This technique enables full colour images to be printed quickly and offers bright, vibrant colours. The downside is that the material can feel thick on the shirt and there is the possibility of peeling off.
Although not a printing technique, embroidery gets your logo and simple images onto any garment, T Shirts, Polo Shirts, Hoodies caps, hats, bags, hats and the finish is very durable and hardwearing. Embroidery works best with small logos and text. This technique usually has a minimum order quantity as well.
We at GoPrinter offer all of these techniques although we specialise in DTG printing as it works best for one-offs and short runs. We are based in Maldon Essex and supply printed products to the UK and worldwide.