September '15

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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84 || P R I N T W E A R S E P T E M B E R 2 0 1 5 PRINTING PERFORMANCE WEAR washings, have as much as 300 per- cent elasticity, support 300 percent elongation, have 100 percent recov- ery, resist excessive abrasion such as synthetic turf, and end up looking new. Finally, what if I told you I'd be willing to give you a dollar for every time you accomplished this Herculean feat—but if you screwed any up, you pay me for the cloth and it costs about twenty dollars. This is essentially the process of printing high-end performance wear. There is not much arguing with the licenser or the retailer—they de- mand their fair share first by mini- mizing their costs. This leaves dec- orators to make a silk purse out of a sow's ear. But rest assured; if we don't take the gig, they'll find someone else who will. Because someone is always will- ing to take on this challenge, it only makes sense that you best under- stand the mechanics of printing per- formance garments and get a part of the market. Just like we're stuck with the gar- ment, to a lesser extent we're stuck with the difficult white ink to deco- rate it. Unfortunately there are only so many white ink options out there, so the first step in overcoming this challenge is to select a mesh which is more suitable to white ink. For a visual understanding, imag- ine filling a bathtub with water to a level greater than the Chianti bottle, referred to before, is tall. After the wine is gone, put the bottle under the water and time how long it takes to fill the bottle through the 3/4" opening. For our purposes we'll say it will take approximately four sec-

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