February '23

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 68 of 104

6 2 G R A P H I C S P R O • F E B R U A R Y 2 0 2 3 G R A P H I C S - P R O. C O M A P P A R E L D E C O R A T I N G like screen printing; it essentially is with- out the mess." Heat transfers are digitally printed graphics applied with heat onto a sub- strate, like 100% cotton, polyester, span- dex, a tri-blend, or a cotton-polyester blend. "Heat transfer is similar to how you would direct screen print onto a gar- ment. It's the same technology," says Jody Mazade, marketing director of Howard Custom Transfers, Inc., a Chicago-based manufacturer of heat transfer products. The graphic is printed onto a carrier sheet like paper or polyester (PET) film using the same inks as screen printing, like plastisol, solvent-based, or water-based. "We're screen printing onto a carrier sheet. We're gel-curing it through a con- veyor dryer, then packaging it and ship- ping it off to our customers at whole- sale pricing," Mazade says. "It's typically sports shops across the country or other apparel decorators or owners of a custom Howard Custom Transfers, Inc., in Chicago, demonstrates applying digital hybrid transfers on a gang sheet to maximize cost-efficiency. (Image courtesy Howard Custom Transfers, Inc.) clothing brand or Etsy shop. ey finish the garment themselves by pressing it onto a shirt or tote bag with a heat press." Tote bags and other materials that can't be printed using traditional print- ing processes, like DTG or screen print- ing, are being printed using heat presses. e materials vary from hats and nylon jackets to backpacks, fanny packs, cooler bags, coozies, small cases, towels, panel artwork, and even wood and home décor items, a trend that began in the last cou- ple of years. "More promo-driven products that can easily fit under a heat press are defi- nitely what our customers are coming to us for," Mazade says. "It's really interest- ing to see what people are dreaming up to customize." Low temperatures have to be used with materials like nylon and polypropylene, which can melt if the temperature is too high; transfers are a good option for syn- thetic fibers as opposed to screen printing, Mazade says.

Articles in this issue

view archives of GRAPHICS PRO - February '23