When you’re getting your T-shirts printed custom online, you’ll want the result to stand the test of time. Many printers deliver inferior designs that crack or peel off after a single wash. Ultimately, if you want your designs to last, you’ll need to choose the best printing techniques.
However, looking for companies that will do your design justice can quickly become overwhelming. Well, worry not — this article will teach you everything you need to know to make the right choice.
Printing Techniques for Getting Your T-Shirts Printed Custom
If you’re looking to get your T-shirts printed custom, you’ll need to be familiar with the basic terminology. So let’s talk about printing methods before we get to the types of ink.
Until recently, screen-printing was the most popular method of transferring your designs to fabric. The process involves having several frames which represent different colors in your design. The printer would cover them in a photosensitive solution, which makes the material harden around your design cutout. Only the part of the surface where you placed your cutout will let ink pass when you run a squeegee over it.
However, screen printing significantly limits the number of colors you get to use. There’s another printing technique that’s about as limited on that point: the 4-color process. That technique uses dots of cyan, yellow, magenta, and black to form a raster design similar to the images you may see in old comic books.
Nowadays, digital printing is much more popular — and it can even achieve the appearance of those other methods, like the 4-color process. Direct-to-garment printing, in particular, has become more popular as of late, especially as the method has improved. It’s exactly what it sounds like — your T-shirt goes into a printer and gets the design pasted onto it directly from the computer.
Types of Fabric Printing Ink
While we’re at it, we should also explain fabric ink. In screen printing, the most popular choices were plastisol and water-based inks. Plastisol is oil-based and heavy, but it’s long-lasting, which made it a fan favorite for a long time. Conversely, water-based inks were much softer and flatter, and also easier to clean up. However, they only showed up on light fabric.
On top of that, there were also various appliques and transfers, like the vinyl print you see on cheap sports jerseys or gold and silver foil printing. Both of those kinds of transfers tend to flake.
At ArtistShot, we tend to use plot printing. So we choose both the type of colors and the kind of transfer we’re going to use based on every custom design we get. There’s flex print, which looks shiny and flat on a shirt, and flock print, which is more felt-like and matte.
Where to Get T-Shirts Printed Near Me
So now, you may be wondering where you could get your T-shirts printed custom near you. Well, you won’t find many physical locations where you might get it done. However, ArtistShot.com is an excellent place to see your designs come to life. Even better, you’ll get free shipping in the US if you get 2 or more items!