October '13

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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Printwear 2013 Q&A Apparel Poplins offer tremendous versatility and meet budget concerns. These shirts and blouses are an excellent choice for uniform programs because the fabric has a soft hand, they are easy to shape and style, and the fabric is durable and wash/wearable. (Image courtesy Edwards Garment) Can I sublimate a 50/50 poly/cotton T-shirt? Sort of. Sublimation only works with 100 percent polyester fibers when it comes to garments. So, in the case of a 50/50 poly/ cotton garment, the only fibers that will actually be sublimated are the polyester ones. The resulting image will look faded when it comes off the heat press. And, on the first washing, it may actually fade slightly more. However, there are sublimators who take advantage of this from the angle of special effects. They create design graphics that are intended to have a washed, rough look (think surf industry) and purposely sublimate them onto 50/50 poly/cotton T-shirts. Jimmy Lamb, Sawgrass Technologies I want to offer pants to complement my client's uniform program, but I've heard sizing is difficult. What do you suggest? Distributors who sell pants for uniform programs should gain an understanding of how their client envisions their staff in the garment. Some questions to ask include: What type of work will the team member be accomplishing while wearing the garments? Should the pants be casual (poly/cotton blend) or dress (poly/wool)? 82 | Printwear PW_OCT13.indd 82 Should they have a specific leg shape (boot cut or trouser)? Will the team member need seasonal styles for cooler and warmer weather? Once the client has settled on a particular style of pant, the sizing is simple. The client will determine the optimum pant length for their work environment. A good rule of thumb is to have the team member have the pant hem lay comfortably at the top of the shoe that they wear while working. Taraynn Lloyd, Edwards Garment I heard that the decoration process covers up too many of the "cells" in performance fabric, which affects its moisture-wicking capabilities. How does sublimation affect the cells? If you apply a large design to the surface of a moisture-wicking garment using traditional methods such as screen printing or vinyl, it's possible that it will reduce the benefits of the performance aspect of the fabric. Sublimation is not a surface process, as it penetrates and dyes the individual fibers. Thus it does not affect the moisture-wicking abilities of the fabric. Jimmy Lamb, Sawgrass Technologies October 2013 9/18/13 11:54 AM

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