February '18

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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2018 THE TEAM SALES REPORT | 15 2018 THE TEAM SALES REPORT | 15 HEAT PRINTING AJ MCALEER, HEAT TRANSFER WAREHOUSE JENNA SACKETT, STAHLS' Choose garment materials that work best with heat transfer vinyl (HTV). Be aware of potential issues with athletic- specific apparel. Garments like sports jer- seys are often dyed with materials that may bleed through upon the first wash, explains Sackett. In the worst-case scenario, "the cus- tomer washes the uniform, and all of your white numbers are now pink." Decorators can avoid this issue by using HTV that blocks dye migration. Watch the temperature. Similar to other ink-based decoration disciplines, the time and temperature for heat-printed apparel is crucial. With team apparel, many fabrics are subject to scorching if you use too high of heat. Sackett recommends choosing HTV that applies as low as 275 degrees F to avoid fabric burns or scorch marks. If you have to print on a specific mate- rial, make sure your HTV works with that material. "There is nothing worse than get- ting your designs cut and weeded and press- ing your first garment only to have it cause scorching or the material won't adhere at all," notes McAleer. For apparel that requires more active use and flexibility, consider corresponding ma- terial like stretch HTV. For breathable mesh garments, use sport material to help with breathability. Avoid customer-supplied garments and use a trusted supplier for apparel blanks whenever possible. "Mistakes happen," adds McAleer. "Using a garment a customer gave you can be very stressful if a mistake is made on that garment." DIRECT-TO-GARMENT BRIAN WALKER, IMAGE ARMOR/RTP APPAREL Pretreatment is key to quality in all direct- to-garment (D2) jobs, including team ap- parel. Consider a pretreatment machine to ensure an even application on each gar- ment. Learn the process and properly main- tain the equipment. Since D2 differs from other printing methods like screen print- ing, take time to learn the process correctly (including its differing requirements for artwork, production time, etc.) and en- sure the printer has a routine maintenance and cleaning schedule. "It takes a little bit of time to clean your machine daily, but 2018 13 E XCITI NG COLOR S Available through Citadel Brands Citadel Brands | 800-229-1240

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