posted by Ahijoy on October 29, 2022
How To Sublimate On Dark Shirts
A dark shirt with a unique vibrant print in the center will definitely earn praises from all and sundry. But how to transfer such a captivating design on a fabric? Sublimation is the key – a process through which you can transform dark shirts into beautiful pieces of art.
How To Do Sublimation Printing?
The process for sublimating dark shirts is the same as that for the light colored ones. There are specific products that can be used to achieve dye-sublimation printing on dark shirts, the ink to be used should be white, and the garment should be made of polyester with no dyes.
Gathering the right paraphernalia before starting the process is of utmost importance. Following is a list of tools that you need to carry out sublimation.
- Heat transfer vinyl.
- Sublimation printer.
- Vinyl cutter or scissors.
- Heat press.
- Parchment paper.
The First Method
Step 1: Create A Beautiful Design
sing a design software, create the pattern that you want to transfer. It can be anything that your heart desires - funny, unique, and artistic. Duplicate the design on the software. One should be as colorful as you want and the other transparent without any color.
This is because one copy will be printed on the sublimation paper and the other will be cut on the heat transfer vinyl. The one to be printed should be slightly larger to give room for color bleed.
Note: The HTV will be cut in reverse and the sublimation paper will also print the design in reverse so don’t forget to flip the design horizontally on the software.
Step 2: Print And Cut
Load ink into the sublimation printer and print the colorful design. Using your favorite cutting machine, carve the vinyl in the same design, then weed the extra film from in and around the design.
Tip: Choose white vinyl for the process so that the colors transferred through sublimation appear crisp and vibrant against a dark background.
Step 3: Weeding And Transfer
Only use sublimation ink that is After weeding, put transfer paper on the design and transfer it on your dark colored t-shirt using a heat press machine. The temperature should be according to the guidelines mentioned for the vinyl.
Once the design is transferred, remove the transfer sheet and set aside the fabric. Increase the temperature of the heat press to 400°F. specifically made for this process.
Step 4: Sublimate On The Design
Flip your sublimation sheet on which the design is printed and place it on the vinyl, aligning it with the design on the shirt. Use heat tape to keep the sublimation print in place.
Step 5: Apply Heat
Now place the shirt back into the heat press, place parchment paper on top and apply heat and pressure for 60 seconds.
Step 6: Behold The Incredible Result
When the time is up remove the shirt from the heat press then remove the sublimation print. Be careful as it might be hot. You have successfully sublimated a dark colored shirt.
The second method involves printing on the heat transfer vinyl using a sublimation printer. Use white vinyl. You can choose between the glossy or matte finish. Following are the steps.
Step 1: Print Your Vinyl
Create the design of your choice on the software. Do not mirror your image. Before printing your design, it's crucial to understand how to insert your vinyl into the sublimation printer.
A vinyl sheet typically has two sides, one of which is shiny and the other slightly rough. You should print your design on the rough side of the vinyl sheet rather than the shiny one because the latter won’t be able to hold the printer’s ink.
Step 2: Cut And Weed
Once the design is printed, cut it using an electronic cutter and weed out the excess vinyl.
Step 3: Pre-Press Your Shirt
Pre-press your dark colored shirt to get rid of humidity in the fabric. This will also remove the creases.
Step 4: Transfer The Vinyl
Place the vinyl on the shirt after removing the backing. Place the parchment paper on top and apply heat between 360° and 390° Fahrenheit for 15 seconds. Put moderate pressure on the area for 15 seconds. Once the transfer is complete, your sublimated dark shirt is ready!
Frequently Asked Questions
You can easily carry out sublimation on dark color shirts with the simple technique mentioned in our blog. Once the process is carried out successfully, you will be ecstatic with the result and win praises all over. Moreover, your print will be durable and won’t wear off easily hence you will be able to enjoy your shirt for a long time to come.