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Direct-To-Garment (DTG) Printing

💡 Looking to Print Photo Quality Designs? Learn About DTG Printing in 2024

What is Direct-to-Garment (DTG) printing?

🕒 5 minutes read

At Meowprint, this popular direct-to-garment (DTG) printing is the latest technology of apparel printing in Singapore.

Imagine having a big printer, and you print directly onto the garment, for example t-shirts, using modified inkjet technology

This method allows you to print your picture directly onto your apparel without losing any of the details.

This method of print is similar to digital heat transfer printing or Sublimation printing as it is also capable of printing real life images or complex designs on t-shirts without the hefty price tag of silk screen printing.

Let’s explore this advanced method of print.

1. How did Direct-to-Garment (DTG) printing come about?

Direct-to-garment printing has come in the apparel printing scene in the year 1996.

Yes, it is a relatively new method of printing as compared to silk screen printing or embroidery which dated centuries ago.

This method of printing was founded by a guy called Matthew Rhome. Upon this revolutionary idea of printing directly onto apparels, the first printer was founded, named “Revolution”.

Since it is a relatively new invention as we’re now only in the year of 2017, many companies have since then built upon the idea of DTG and produced magnificent state of the art printers to sell DTG printing.

Some well-known companies are Mimaki & Kornit. Despite all who managed to come up with the best printer, Epson emerged the top, and named to have created the best DTG printer on the surface of Earth in 2014.

Surecolor Epson F2000 Printers

2. DTG printing process (Step-by-step)

How long would you require to print a piece of paper? That’s about the simplicity of dtg printing, as mentioned earlier, is like printing on a piece of t-shirt.

If you are printing on white garments, no pre-treatment will be required. However, if you are looking to print on dark garments, pre-treatment is required.

Why is this so? This is because a layer of white ink is required to act as a base for the coloured inks (of your designs) to sit on top of the white layer.

And of course, to prevent the white ink from penetrating the t-shirt, a pre-treatment liquid is applied to bind the t-shirt fabric together allowing the white ink to stay on top of the t-shirt.

Pre-treatment of the t-shirt (Manual)

  • First, place the t-shirt on a flat surface for easy application.
  • Prepare the pre-treatment solution.
  • Carefully spread the pre-treatment liquid on the t-shirts using a brush or spray.
  • Once done, apply a heat transfer paper on top to allow the t-shirt to go under the heat press machine for 35 seconds at 350 degrees to allow the fabric to bind together and complete the pre-treatment process!

Once pre-treated, you can now place the t-shirt onto the Epson DTG printer. Using the software that is applicable directly on your computer, position the design file to the location where you wish to print the design on.

During the process, as mentioned earlier, a white ink layer will be printed first, followed by the colored inks. After 3 minutes, you will have a t-shirt with full image printing with excellent finishing.

The ink is still wet. Therefore, don’t forget to apply the heat press machine with a transfer paper in between for 1 minute at 350 degrees. Finish!

If that was too complicated, you can view the video below for visual reference!

How To Print Direct To Garment With The Epson F2000 DTG Printer

3. Advantages & Disadvantages of DTG Printing

To help you make a better choice when deciding on the type of t-shirt printing services, we have also come up with some advantages and disadvantages of dtg printing.

Advantages

  • Print full-coloured designs without any loss of details.
  • Print at affordable prices for small quantities as compared to silk screen printing.
  • Ink is part of the apparel for white garments, and soft touch ink for dark garments, giving it the quality of t-shirts that branded retail shops sell.

Disadvantages

  • Price – Despite being cheaper to print full-colored designs than silk screen printing at lower quantities, it is relatively a more costly method of printing especially for bigger sizes like A4 or A3 sized design.
  • Printing on dark garments will add even more costs. This is because on dark garments, a first layer of white ink has to be printed on the apparel as a base, followed by the actual ink color of the design to give the full image printing effect.
  • Efficiency – Longer than normal bulk silk screen printing as only one machine can print one design at a time.
  • It is not suitable to create individual names or numbers at low cost. For this, you will need vinyl heat transfer printing method.

4. We can provide DTG printing for the following Products from our catalogue.

T-Shirts & Apparels

  1.  ✅ All T-Shirts
  2.  ✅ All Polo T-Shirts
  3.  ✅ All Outerwear 
  4.  ✅ All Singlets & Tank Tops
  5.  ✅ All Caps & Hats
  6.  ✅ All Corporate Uniforms
  7.  ✅ All Workwear
  8.  ✅ All Shorts & Pants

Corporate Gifts

  1.  ✅ All Lanyards
  2.  ❌ All Custom Patches
  3.  ❌ All Pins & Badges
  4.  ✅ All Personal Care
  5.  ✅ All Bags
  6.  ❌ All Towels
  7.  ❌ All Drinkware
  8.  ❌ All Office Supplies
  9.  ❌ All Umbrellas
  10.  ❌ All Promotional Gifts
  11.  ❌ All Sustainable Gifts
  12.  ❌ All Door Gifts
  13.  ❌ All Premium Gifts

5. Recommendations for DTG printing by MeowPrint

DTG printing is recommended for customers who are looking to print full-colored designs with latest technology inkjet onto their apparel.

It is recommended for customers who have small quantities to print these full-colored designs.

The costing does not significantly decrease over large quantity as the set-up costs is pretty much fixed due to the nature of DTG printing.

This is the same as embroidery in terms of costing, although embroidery cost price decrease at higher quantities.

Although the quality of printing may be more appealing to many of our customers, but the price may not be the same case.

If you are working on a budget but wishes to print full-colored designs on your t-shirts, do check out our heat transfer printing method or the custom-made services create cut-&-sew apparels.

It is a much more affordable method of printing and we strongly recommend it.

⭐ Customer Reviews

Still have reservations on our Direct-to-Garment (DTG) printing services? Let our customers' genuine feedback help you!
MeowPrint T-Shirt Printing
4.9
Based on 591 reviews
Ordered another batch of custom made t shirts from MeowPrint again. The service provided by Xiaofen was great and seamless. From the day I enquire to the day I received the t-shirts took about 1 week. Very happy with the service and the end products.
Angela Chan
Angela Chan
10:40 16 May 24
Good quality shirts at very competitive price. Prompt reply from sales team and they are very kind, helpful and understanding. Best of all, the lead time is short too. Highly satisfied, highly recommend!
Lizhen C
Lizhen C
05:49 14 May 24
Good design , am happy and satisfied with the results
lim weilun
lim weilun
13:33 30 Apr 24
Pleasant ordering experience with them, special thanks to their sales coordinator Janice for entertaining my queries and updating me on my order throughout the production process
efkj
efkj
01:03 24 Apr 24
Very responsive, helpful & patience during the ordering process, and my order was completed very efficiently :) Thank you!
Sarah Ang
Sarah Ang
15:25 12 Apr 24
Super easy to deal with and straightforward. Xiao Fen assisted me from start to finish! All messages were replied to promptly and price was transparent too. The quality of the Gildan Hoodies we ordered were comfortable, true to color and our embroidery was as how we requested for it to be. Thank you so much for the opportunity and definitely will come back for the other items!
Zanaria Zainal
Zanaria Zainal
08:45 03 Apr 24
Price was reasonable, high quality shirts and overall good customer service for our enquiries, providing samples when requested.
Abigail Faith
Abigail Faith
01:51 28 Mar 24
quick and fast professional service :)keep up the good work team!
meru
meru
03:28 27 Mar 24
I have worked with MeowPrint for a long time (years!) now and they always deliver! Janice has always been very easy and pleasant to deal with throughout. My go to!
Shfq M
Shfq M
10:38 17 Mar 24
Ordered 60+ windbreakers for my CCA. Quality came out perfect, everybody loved the embroidery on the jacket. Printing was of good quality too!
NYP Symphony Orchestra
NYP Symphony Orchestra
08:06 15 Mar 24