October '15

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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2 0 1 5 O C T O B E R P R I N T W E A R || 93 How do I prevent my tagless label heat transfer from showing through the back side of my garment? There are a few options to try. You can ease off the pressure just slightly— not too much, otherwise you run the risk of the product not adhering well. You can also use a piece of non-woven pellon over the top of the transfer. Note that this works with cold-peel products only. Also, some fabrics are very thin, so preventing "grin through" may not be avoidable. JENNIFER JOHNSON, INSTA GRAPHICS Printer/cutters allow deocroators to quickly produce graphics that can be applied to a number of sub- strates. (Image courtesy STHALS') I am trying to choose between purchasing a printer/cutter or a digital direct-to-garment printer. What pros and cons can you provide to help me choose? The big advantage a printer/cutter has over any other decorating process is that it offers materials that can be adhered to almost anything. Therefore, it has the widest number of applications. Even hard-to-print materials can be decorated with a printer/cutter. Digital direct-to-substrate printers are limited to mostly 100 percent cotton substrates. That's what the inks are for- mulated to print on. You also can print on 100 percent white polyester if you add a special pretreatment. However, printing on 50/50 cotton/polyester does not have good results due to dye migration. Digital direct-to-substrate has a very soft hand to its advantage, to the point that digital prints have nearly indiscernible textures. While there are thin printer/cutter films, those still have a more distinct hand than a digital print. If budget is a deciding factor, you can pur- chase a 20" printer/cutter, the smallest available, for less than a digital direct-to-substrate printer. However, in most cases I recommend getting a 30" or 54" cutter, which allows for a much wider range of applications and versatility. STEVEN JACKSON, STAHLS'

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