Customised tee shirts have become much more than a style statement - they actually are a status symbol now, with individualised designs signifying one’s uniqueness in a sea of people wearing branded tee-shirts. The reasoning behind custom printed tee-shirts is that people love them - the concept and the idea - because they have the power to spark conversations and serve as an ice-breaker. The technology behind printing custom tee-shirts has become so common that the costs associated with producing these have gone down by a lot - making such commercial ventures a reality for many people looking to get into this niche. In this article, we will look at the technology behind these custom tee-shirts.

custom tshirt design printing

Junto Coffee Apparel by SG Kivett

There are two main ways to custom print a tee-shirt - one being digital printing, which is a relatively new technology and the other is screen printing, which is an age old technology - both of which have their uses.

Coming to screen printing, it involves the creation of a stencil layer (commonly known in printer parlance as a “screen”). So, this stencil is used to deposit a colour on the printing surface which is the tee-shirt, and the process is repeated several times with different stencils to deposit different colours onto the tee-shirt, which forms a composite of the final image. This is a pretty costly way of going about the printing of custom tee-shirts, but has its own use and people use this technology when they want to go for a design with vibrant colours, especially when printing designs on dark backgrounds and for luxury products.

Digital printing is at the other end of the printing spectrum. This is a new process developed and it involves your design (developed and processed by a design computer) being printed on to the tee-shirt’s surface directly without the use of a stencil. Such a technique does not involve any heat transfer or application using non-conventional methods, but is simply a direct transfer of the heat onto the surface of the tee-shirt.

Both of these processes have their own pros and cons, and the printing house will select either of them based on the application of the tee-shirts and the finish that the customer is going for. When looking at digital based printing, people tend to prefer that when there is high-resolution designs involved in the process, as it tends to be pretty accurate in reproducing the images on the tee-shirts through the printing process.

Also, digital printing is more suited for orders where the quantity of prints ordered is low due to budgetary constraints or need of the customer, as it is a lower cost method compared to screen-printing. If you are looking for Toronto custom t-shirts in the city, a simple google search is all you need to do to find amazing printing places that will help you produce runs of your custom design either using screen printing or digital based printing to help your design speak out and build a brand for yourself.





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About the author

Alex Roman

Independent graphic artist and architect based in Bucharest. I really love what i do!

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