When you’re deciding how to print an image onto a garment or textile product, you need a technique that is efficient, cost-effective and produces the standard of finish that your customers expect. Silk screen printing and heat transfer are two popular methods, but to select the most appropriate technique, it’s important to have a thorough understanding of both.
A heat transfer is a method of taking a printed image and fixing the image directly to the garment in order to copy the image onto the garment itself. Typically, this technology has been used for customising t-shirts and, more recently, for the application of “tag-less” labels.
There are some circumstances in which fabric garment labels are simply not practical. Swimwear is an example of where an external label would be irritating and inappropriate. A lot of other sportswear falls into the same category. These garments are often tight fitting and come into direct contact with the skin. When combined with sweat and friction through use, fabric labels can feel uncomfortable and cause irritation to the skin. Heat transfer label printing offers an alternative to using fabric labels in a range of clothing, an option that is being taken up by a growing group of manufacturers. These days, heat transfer labels are cropping up in underwear, hats, jeans, shirts, skirts and dresses - in fact anywhere that a traditional fabric label would normally be used.