People ask me all the time, why should I go digital printing or direct to garment versus screen printing?
For me, it all depends on the design, the type of shirt, and the color of shirt it’s going on.
In lower quantity orders such as 1-36 pieces, digital can be a great way to produce a design digitally with a lot of colors at a lower rate. You can reproduce photos, print over seams and zippers and also print on those hard to get to places such as on hoodies, over pockets and so on with direct to garment printers. The drawback to digital is that it is water based ink.
So, all polyester performance fabrics are not available for digital printing at this time.
Polyester is meant to wick away water, not absorb it like cotton would during the digital printing process.
The last thing to consider is what color of shirt you are wanting to print on. Standard digital printers are meant to be printed on lighter colored garments such as white, gray, light blue t shirts etc.
Think of it like you are putting a colored piece of paper inside a color printer. If the paper is yellow and you print a photo, the face will be yellow.
Many of the misconceptions on digital direct to garment printing is that once the garment is washed, the design looks faded out. It’s actually the cotton fibers that are now sticking up making a layer of cotton fuzz on the shirt that is blocking you from seeing the design. The design is still there. It’s just seen through fibers.
When considering services screen printing on your t shirts versus digital direct to garment with a low quantity of shirts that you have a lot of colors in your design, go digital!