15 November, 2015
The printed t-shirt has been around for about a century, and anything that's been around that long has probably experienced some sort of a digital evolution. We know you're well versed in what screen printing is--but what about digital printing? Sure it looks similar, but there are so many differences. Here's a little Digital Printing 101 from EZ Corporate Clothing!
Look and Feel
To the untrained eye, screen printing and digital printing might look similar, albeit digital printing can produce a more faded look. The difference is really in the feel. Screen printing lays a layer of ink over the fabric meaning that you can feel the print raised up above the fabric of the garment. With digital printing, the ink is printed into the garment so that the entire surface is flat. It's almost like printing on paper in the sense that the ink and what you're printing on really become one.
Screen printing works on just about any type of fabric (of course we wouldn't recommend screen printing on things like velvet or terry cloth). Digital printing, on the other hand, is really only an option for 100% cotton garments. The problem is polyester doesn't absorb ink the way cotton does, and if the ink isn't absorbed into the fabric your design won't show. You'll also want to avoid anything plastic as there is a heat press involved in the digital printing process, and heat plus plastic equals a melted, not pretty garment.
Because digital printing by nature has a softer look, it will only show up on light colored garments. It looks best (with the richest ink colors) on white garments, but we can also use digital printing on light gray or beige garments. Anything darker is risky.
While we require a 24 garment minimum for screen printing orders because of the set up time, digital printing requires little set up time, so we are more than happy to print just one custom garment when it's printed digitally.
Having less set up time also allows us to produce digitally printed products more quickly. With rush orders, sometimes we can produce a digitally printed garment in the same day!
Still have questions about digital printing? Give us a call at 1-877-304-1899!