Advancements in printing technology have made it easier for us to get our favourite clothes printed the way we like. Especially for t-shirts and sweatshirts, where most of us like printing cool designs and quotes on them. However, before ordering custom printed t-shirts online, you need to select the right method of printing.
There are effortless ways to print custom apparel – a customized sweatshirt can be printed in different ways and across multiple areas. Also, the two most popular ways to print them are – screen printing and digital printing.
Let’s find out which is the best way to print custom sweatshirts: screen printing or digital printing?
Screen Printing for Customised Sweatshirts
Screen printing is a traditional printing technique that dates back to over a hundred years. In this method, the fabric is printed with the use of mesh that transfers the ink on to a substrate (the base layer of your sweatshirt). With block stencils, the ink gets transferred only through the impermeable areas of the screen.
In the clothing industry, screen printing has been a preferred way of printing apparel. It is a basic printing method and requires average skills for execution. The reasons why you should print your custom sweatshirts/t-shirts with screen printing are:
- High Quality: The output of this printing technique is really good. Your designs get excellent finishing and the printed areas stand out exceptionally from the rest of the apparel. The printed areas are toned out evenly.
- Durable: Screen-printed custom sweatshirts can last for years. Their printed areas stay intact even after multiple washing. You can also use emboss printing to get a thick and more durable printed layer on your sweatshirt.
- Economical: The cost of printing one sweatshirt with this technique is significantly cheaper than that of digital printing. This technique also requires affordable resources and relatively inexpensive materials.
- Versatile: You can print sleeves, wrists, shoulders, chest, back and every other part of your sweatshirt. The technique can also print complex designs across a wide range of colours.
However, being a primitive printing technique, there are some reasons why screen printing is not the best way to print custom sweatshirts. The initial setup cost is high and it takes more time to print. There are limited colour ranges available. Also, the amount of ink used on your custom apparel appears to have been layered above the fabric, and not infused with it.
Digital Printing for Custom Sweatshirts
Digital printing, on the other hand, is an advanced printing technique used to directly print digital-based images onto the media substrates. In this method, dry-toner based printers are used. These printers map the minuscule ink droplets while the toner heats up a fine plastic powder to melt the ink and transfer it to the substrate.
Currently, most custom sweatshirt manufacturers prefer using digital printing. It is a fast way of printing customized sweatshirts in bulk. However, digital printing can also be used for placing single orders, which proves to be pretty useful and handy. There are several advantages of printing custom hoodies with digital printing method:
- Simple Process: The process involves fewer steps, compared to screen printing. Also, the devices used in digital printing are integrated together, requiring the least amount of manual intervention.
- High Added Value: UV inkjet printers provide a glossy finish on standard colour prints. Embossed effects and textured prints are great add-ons, which are not feasible when it comes to screen printing.
- Full-Colour Ranges: There are infinite design possibilities as digital printing offers a vast colour range without any gradation print limitations.
- Quick Delivery: Digital printing is done without using plates, which results in rapid delivery.
However, the range of printable fabrics is somewhat limited, compared to non-fabric substrates. In addition to this, digital prints are less durable and white colours are reproduced within the print. Economically, fixed pricing makes bulk printing costly.
Screen Printing vs Digital Printing – Which is Best for Your Custom Sweatshirt?
As long as you have the patience to wait for the customized printing of your sweatshirts and hoodies, you should opt for what suits you best and flaunt your swag in the time to come!