What is Sublimation Printing?
Sublimation shirt printing is a specific process of printing that first involves printing onto a special sheet of paper, then transferring that image onto another material (usually polyester or a polyester mix).
The ink is then heated until it disintegrates into the fabric.
The process of Sublimation shirt printing costs more than other methods, but it lasts longer, and will not crack or peel over time, like other shirt printing methods.
So how does sublimation printing work? After you have chosen your design, you should use a sublimation printer to print it out onto the special paper. The design is then printed onto the fabric, by either using a heat press or (if you are doing it at home) by applying pressure and putting it into the oven.
You will have to use a transfer paper (usually sublimation paper) so that the design transfers onto the fabric. Bringing the ink and the fabric together, the ink is embedded and therefore will remain more vibrant for longer (in comparison to other printing processes). The heat in the press or the oven opens the fabric’s pores up, whilst the pressure that’s put onto the fabric cools the ink down – turning it into a solid form. The press can then be released and the paper gently taken off of the shirt or mug (or whatever object that you have used).
A simple process once mastered, it can be inexpensively be recreated at home with the help of a compact sublimation printer and a heat press. If you’ve ever wanted to create designs that stand out from the crowd, this is an efficient and creative way of doing so.