February '18

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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Sublimatable garments that offer sun protection like this UPF50+ hood- ie pictured add value to teams that spend time in the sun. (Image cour- tesy Vapor Apparel) MAKING THE CUT Quick Tips for Tackling Common Team Apparel Decoration Disciplines B Y M I C H A E L C L A R K 12 | THE TEAM SALES REPORT 2018 T he team apparel market can be a lucrative arm for decorators of virtually any discipline depend- ing on the size of the order and the garments or accessories the school, club, or group approaching your shop is inter- ested in. And since personalized team sports wear is a market that has multiple seasons and categories, shops can add everything from baseball to football to cheer and track to their list of specialties, keeping the pro- duction calendar full almost all year-long. Whether it's screen printing, embroidery, heat printing, direct-to-garment, or subli- mation, businesses will want to approach this market right the first time to secure long-term clients. For this year's Team Sales Report, Printwear checks in with a few in- dustry experts on some key tips for each decoration discipline. SCREEN PRINTING LON WINTERS, GRAPHICELEPHANTS.COM Know the fabric construction. Typically, garments for team screen-printing jobs will be either a partial polyester-based garment or fully polyester. Printing on these fabrics can often lead to ink bleed, so screen print- ers will want to pay close attention to their ink options. Once fabric is established, the proper ink can be chosen. Top considerations for team apparel in particular, Winters explains, are: Plastisol: Some of these inks contain bleed blockers, blowing agents, and, in some in- stances, peroxides or bleaching agents. However, these inks may be temperamental since they usually need to reach 325 degrees F to cure, and dyes may become more active at lower temperatures. Low-cure (plastisol and silicone): Print- ers will need to keep their dryer and flash temperatures in the 280–380 degrees F range for plastisols, and approximately 250 degrees F for silicone inks. Silicone inks

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