T-shirt printing technique

5 T-Shirt Printing Techniques for Small Business Owners

Before diving into your next t-shirt projection, you might be wondering which technique to use to accomplish this goal. Although screen printing is most commonly used, there are other various types of t-shirt printing techniques that allow you to properly, accurately, and customly design your next product. 

Customers are looking for the next best thing and staying abreast to trends and changes is something that our team proudly strives to achieve. 

Let’s examine 5 common t-shirt printing techniques that your business can use to expand:

Dye Sublimation

Dye sublimation pairs best with lighter fabrics when it comes to penetration. Dye sublimation is a molecular dye process so it acts as a stand-alone category. Outside of general knowledge, it is best to thoroughly research this process prior to implementation as is best used on fabrics with at least 65% polyester.. Dye sublimation relies on specialized liquid that once solidified can have heat and pressure applied to true sublimation to occur.  Sublimation is not only for t-shirts, It can be used on various materials as long as they have a polyester coating - ceramic, aluminum, hardboard, MDF, glass and fiberboard. 

If you’re gravitating toward polyester fabrics, Dye Sublimation may be the way to go for a small business.

Direct to Garment (DTG) Printing

Direct to Garment (DTG) printing functions by spraying ink onto the desired fabric and once the ink sinks in the process works similarly to ink on paper. DTG is easy to use for one-offs as the process is quite swift and has little to no set up required. 

Direct to Garment is perfect for custom, more versatile printing designs, efficiency, and although timely, opting for the DTG technique could save you in the end. 

White Toner Transfer (WTT) Printing Solution

White toner transfer (WTT)  printing allows users to print designs onto special films. The special films are then transferred onto a t-shirt or other fabric using an adhesive. Similar to heat and pressure printing solutions a laser printer, special digital rasterization software and swing arm heat press are necessary for an accurate process.

For clear, great color results without heavy investment, WTT could be more suitable for your business solution.

Screen Printing

Screen printing is a printing method where ink is syphered through a screen onto fabric. The ink will not penetrate the fabric, but rather lay on top of an item. Primarily used for bulk print items due to lengthy set-up and production times, screen printing works best for solid graphics focused on intricate details. Additionally, screen printing is ultimately cost-effective, but the upfront investments can make an initial dent. 

For more cost-effective printing techniques for larger operations, aim for screen printing.

Heat Transfer Vinyl (HTV)

Heat Transfer Vinyl (HTV) is equivalent to a sticker on garments. It is bonded on top of the fabric as a whole. You don’t see vinyl flake off in small pieces and crack over time the way other heat transfer printing options do; you see whole sections peel away from washing. to decorate or personalize T-shirts, garments, and other fabric items. HTV contains a heat-activated adhesive backing, which allows the vinyl to permanently transfer to your garment when heat pressed with sufficient time, temperature, and pressure. 

This is widely used and works best on Cotton, Polyester or poly/cotton fabric. 

Why TJamm6 Creations for Custom T-Shirt Design

Understanding and clarifying the difference between t-shirt printing types is important. Things like DTG, Direct to film, screen print, plastisol transfers and white toner all fall into the “heat transfer printing” categories are good to note. We want customers to have the most accurate information in order to make an informed decision regarding their products. 

At TJamm6 Creations we are committed to providing top-quality custom prints and designs for the whole family to enjoy. 

Explore unique custom products available online today!


Written by Sabrina Burner