Dye Sublimation

Dye Sublimation, or dye sub as it is referred to in the industry, is a process by which sublimation dyes are printed onto a transfer medium with a specially prepared inkjet printer. Thereafter, those dyes are then transferred from the medium to an object or garment under the heat and pressure delivered by a commercial heat press. Sublimation only works on garments made of polyester, or on specialty objects made of polyester or given a polyester coating. When the heat and pressure are applied, the dye on the transfer medium sublimates, or becomes a gas, and is then absorbed into the polyester itself; the print is actually a part of the garment/coating. It does not fade easily, wear, or have any texture or weight.

The dye sublimation printing process requires two steps. First, the custom graphics are digitally printed on a transfer paper as a mirror image of the original. The transfer paper is then inserted into a heat press which sublimates the print, meaning the graphics transfer from a gas to a solid without passing through a liquid stage, onto a polyester fabric or polymer material.

PROS

No setup fees involved

No minimums

Ideal for all over print and wraparound prints

Unlimited color spectrum

Great for non-garment promotional products such as mouse pads, coasters, etc.

Never cracks or fades as inks are dyed into the garment.

CONS

Limited to 100% polyester or polyester dominant garments

May require pre-assembled cut pieces for all-over printing

Pricing does not scale down with higher quantities

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