HTV, DTG, Supacolour, Supasub, Colourfast, UltraColour, Ultraflex, Sublimation, Embroidery.... ​

We offer it all, but what does it all mean??

There are a lot of options available when it comes to custom branded apparel and accessories. In past years, you really only had the option of screen-printing or embroidery but there has been a lot of advancement in recent years and now the options are limitless. Heat transfer and direct-to-garment technology has advanced significantly and has filled the gap between Screen-printing and embroidery.

There still isn’t a “one-size-fits-all” solution when it comes to printing methods and there are pro’s and con’s to each.

But that’s okay, we will always recommend the best solution to make sure your printed apparel looks as good as possible!

Heat Transfer Vinyl (HTV)

Heat transfer vinyl is an ultra-thin polyurethane film with a clear backing layer. The design is “cut out” using a specialised plotter which cuts through only the vinyl layer (approx. 1/4 of a mm) leaving the clear layer untouched. The unwanted areas of the design are removed, leaving only the design on the clear backing paper. This is then transferred to the garment using heat and pressure.

Speciality finishes – Raised, Suede, metallic, reflective, glossy, flouro, glow-in-the-dark etc.

Suitable for a wide range of products and materials

Cost effective for small quantities

Perfect for sporting apparel numbers

Only suitable for 1-2 colour designs

Not ideal for really fine detail

Digital Transfers

There are a couple of options when it comes to Digital transfers. One method is similar to HTV except the design is printed onto a specialised transfer vinyl film and the second method prints the design to a transparent film (DTF) and then has an adhesive applied. Both methods are then transferred to the garment using heat and pressure.

Good for small to medium quantities

Can produce full colour or photographic images

Unable to colour match specific colours i.e. Pantones.

No speciality finishes i.e. metallics, neons etc.

Screen Printed Transfers

Filling the gap between HTV and Screen Printing, Screen Printed Transfers are a cost effective option for medium to large quantity orders. Screen Printed Transfers use water-based inks resulting in durable and vibrant prints. While the setup cost is a little higher than some other print methods, the longevity, choice of colours and ability to colour match make Screen Printed Transfers a great option.

Vibrant Colours

Speciality Inks – Metallics, Flouro, neon etc.

Exceptional softness and stretch

Able to match Pantone colours

Durable (100+ washes)

Only suited to 1-2 colour designs

Unable to produce photographic designs

Direct to Garment (DTG)

Direct to Garment printing is just as it sounds. The garment is basically loaded into a really big inkjet printer and the design is printed directly onto the garment. As part of the process the print is then fixed to the material using heat.

No Minimums

Full Colour/Photographic designs

Fast Turnaround time

Multiple designs at no additional cost

Colours not as vibrant as other print methods

Not cost effective for large quantities

Limited design placement

Limited product range

Shorter print life than other print methods

Screen Printing

Screen Printing is the age old process of applying ink through a stenciled mesh screen onto the material. Screen Printing offers longevity and vibrancy along with the benefit of specific colour matching and is the most cost-effective solution for high quantity orders. However, due to the intensive setup process, Screen Printing has a more expensive setup cost compared to other print methods which is why it’s not suited to small orders.

Vibrant Colours

Speciality Inks – Metallics, Flouro, neon etc.

Exceptional softness and stretch

Able to match Pantone colours

Cost effective for large quantities

Durable (100+ washes)

Minimum order quantity of 20 units

Setup fee applies for each colour

Maximum of 6 colours

Unable to produce photographic designs

Sublimation

Dye sublimation is a process where the image is first printed onto Heat Transfer Paper then transferred to the material using heat and pressure. As part of this process, the sublimation ink converts from a solid to a gas and then back to a solid as it transfers to the material, which permanently fixes the ink into the fibres of the fabric.

Vibrant colours

Full Colour/Photographic designs

Cost effective for small quantities

Durable (100+ washes)

No white ink – only suitable for white/light materials

Prints look terrible on dark/coloured materials

Only able to print to polyester fabrics (no cotton)

Embroidery

Embroidery is the process of weaving a design into the material by needle and thread. This is done by creating a digitised artwork file and using specialised embroiding machines to stitch the design into the material. While embroidery has significant limitations, it is still a popular choice due it’s distinctive look and longevity.

Professional finish

Longest lasting of all print methods

Suitable for a wide range of products and materials

Unable to print gradients or fine details

Minimum order quantity of 20 units

Setup and digitising fees