Shirt Printing course of action Guide

Shirt Printing course of action Guide

As a clothing line, creative director, designer can you replicated the look and feel of your favorite graphic tees? This guide should help you decide which method will help you best produce the clothing you desire.

Printing processes

Plastisol Print

This course of action is very shared and offers a great deal of options in regards to the details capable in printing your designs (varies with screen capabilities) and in the overall coverage of the design it can be used to print almost anywhere. This printing method is extremely lasting. Shirts printed using plastisol based inks will wash a number of times while nevertheless retaining its original color intensity and integrity of the image. The results my very however, with less experienced screen printers. When passing your hand atop of a shirt with a graphic printed with plastisol inks one can feel the ink very slightly raised about the shirt. That is because the ink is laid over the shirt and interlocked well with the shirt using both heat and chemical bonds. This effect and feel may be desired if your goal is to give the turn up of a quality print you can feel.

Benefits: Extremely lasting, vibrant colors, several creative options, strong finished product, cost effective for medium/mass production.


Sublimination is desired for low quantity order that may all over prints or in unconventional places on the apparel. When choosing Dye Sublimination keep in mind that it is for polyester/polyester based products only. Also keep in mind that it is chiefly for white garments or pastel color garnments.

Benefits: Superior quality, freedom to place designs virtually anywhere, soft feel to finished products.

Direct to Garment (DTG)

This course of action is one of the most desired for low quantity orders because it is more cost effective for small quantities. It produces the desired images on clothing by printing with inks directly onto the shirt fabric (very similar to a traditional printer.) DTG printing is chiefly for cotton based apparel and depending on the printer may only be for the lighter cotton colors.

Benefits: Cost effective, soft feel, range of options in terms of the colors you can use since no setup is required.


Printing using waterbased inks achieves 2 desired results. It is a very earth friendly and environmental way of printing so the setup and cleanup is not very unhealthy to the earth in terms of chemical waste. So if you are running a very earth friendly fact line or if you are concerned about the chemical interaction with the “wearer” this would be a great way to go. The second great thing about water based inks is printing graphics to apparel with a soft feel to it. Often a release is laid under as a base to discolor the fabric. This allows to inks to dye the fabric more so then just lay on top of it, creating a very soft feel to the shirt.

Benefits: Earth friendly, soft feel, lasting, great water based look

Puff Printing

After our design has been printed with this method the ink feels puffed or raised from the cloth, giving it a very visible and 3D feel. This kind of printing looks great with designs that highlight a specific part.

Benefits: Creative option for clothing lines, rare details to rather boring designs, creative option with designing.

Foil printing

Foil printing is picking up in popularity due to its noticeable characteristics. Foil printing uses adhesive and “foil” paper to create the foil effect often seen as big foil words on shirts.

Benefits: Super shiny, stands out, reflects, becoming popular

Heat Press

This course of action is commonly seen in malls and in convenience areas where quick and efficient jobs are expected. Most often low quantity jobs. With heat pressing images are either printed onto a move paper and then heat pressed onto a shirt or vinyl is cut and then heat pressed onto the garment.

Benefits: Fast, good for low quantities, shirts can be freely made upon request.

Keep in mind: This course of action may not be as lasting as some of the others mentioned due to the fact that you are pressing the image on top of the apparel.

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