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What is Dye Sublimation printing?

πŸ’‘ Looking to Print Full Coloured Designs with Ink Within The Product for a Smooth Feel? Learn About Dye Sublimation Printing in 2021

Dye Sublimation printing is the process where ink is sublimated into the fabric (100% nylon / polyester) at high temperature.

What you get is a fully all-over printed apparels with designs ink inside the fabric (smooth feel of the T-Shirt).

Recent Custom Sublimation Printing Apparels

The ink undergoes a process from solid to gaseous state without undergoing the liquid state.

This process of sublimation allows the ink to be part of the fabric. At the end, it feels that you printed directly onto the fabric itself, as you cannot feel the ink, unlike silk screen printing or DTG Printing where you can feel the ink.

The unique feature of sublimation printing is precisely that the ink is in the fabric.

This is in contrast to other digital transfer methods such as digital heat transfer printing where the printing is done on the exterior of the fabric.

This makes it a unique printing method when it comes to T-Shirt Printing in Singapore.

At Meowprint, our Sublimation printing services have a lead-time of about 3-5 weeks from the start of processing of our orders.

With only a minimum order quantity of 50 pieces, you are able to customize your all-over sublimation printed apparels and products.

1. How did Sublimation printing come about?

Interestingly, the origins of sublimation printing are a result of the discovery of piezoelectricity and research of inkjet printers. Noel de Plasse first invented sublimation printing in 1957.

He cleverly discovered that high temperatures could cause specific dyes to sublimate. But, this was later discovered that his dyes didn’t really sublimate and that it was more of a dye-diffusion process.

The subsequent events that took place are then subject to debate. On the one hand, it has been said that Nobutoshi Kihara, who worked for Sony, adapted dye diffusion into a proper dye-sublimation process primarily for the purposes of printing video stills.

But, at the same time, across the other side of the world, Wes Hoekstra in California was thought to have developed the first computer-driven sublimation system.

What’s important to know is that – the advance of technology and the increased demand for such high quality products have caused a increase in the prevalence of sublimation printing today.

2. What is Sublimation process?

We mentioned above a very brief idea of what sublimation printing is.

If you are eager to learn more about it now, fret not, because this section will be dedicated to elaborating on the process of sublimation printing as well as the equipment and materials that you might need.

The idea of sublimation is crucial in this process. To refresh your memories from the glorious days in schools, sublimation is essentially the process where a substance transitions from the solid state into the gaseous state.

The important thing to note here is that the liquid state is leapfrogged. Conversely, the process of deposition is the opposite.

In this process, a substance transitions from the gas phase directly into a solid, again leapfrogging the liquid phase.

Do keep this in mind, as this will then help you understand the later sections of this article.

What you get is a fully all-over printed apparels with designs ink inside the fabric (smooth feel of the T-Shirt).

Sublimation Printing Process

3. Process of Sublimation T-Shirt printing (Step-by-step)

Basically, successful sublimation printing can be done in this two part process :

  1. Printing the design onto a special transfer paper using sublimation inks.
  2. Using a heat press to transfer the design on the special paper (in Step 1) onto the t-shirt

As you can see from the process above, the crucial equipment used in sublimation printing is:

  1. A sublimation printer, sublimation inks and a software to control your printer.
  2. Transfer paper (or sublimation paper)
  3. A heat press machine

Sublimation Printing Process

Printing the design onto the transfer paper

The sublimation printing process begins with a printer and unique sublimation inks.

A dye-sublimation printer uses heat to transfer dye onto various materials. Sublimation ink is unique because of its ability to convert from a solid to a gas without going through a liquid form.

  • First, the printing process starts with films that contain dyes (ink). The film typically includes 4 color pigments, cyan magenta, yellow and gray.
  • Typically, this could either take the form of a single film with 4 layers of colors, or 4 individual films for each color.
  • Then, during the printing process the pigments in these films are heated up and transferred onto the transfer paper through a piezoelectric print head. This print head is capable of printing at least 200 different shades of each color!
  • The pigments will then transition into gaseous state and leave the film.
  • The pigments will subsequently cool and solidify onto the transfer paper. This is the sublimation process!

Transferring design on the paper onto the t-shirt

Now that you have successfully printed your design onto a sublimation paper, the next step is to transfer this onto the final product – your t-shirts.

In order to do this, a heat press is required. With the application of heat and pressure for a period of time, the design can be imprinted onto the t-shirt. The period of time is dependent on the dye formulation and the type of fabric of the t-shirt.

Again, this requires the process of sublimation all over again. The high temperature from the heat press causes the dye on the paper to sublime into a vapor/gas.

At the same time, the pores of the t-shirt that you’re pressing heat onto will also open up. Once pressure is released and heat is cooled, the dye will then turn back into solid form.

The result? The pores of the t-shirt will then close and the gas reverts back to a solid state.

Because the pores of the t-shirt have encapsulated the ink whilst it was closing, the ink is now part of the fabric.

The difference between Inkjet and Sublimation Printers

The comparison between inkjet and sublimation printers can be useful to further show how sublimation printers work!

One interesting fact about the sublimation printer is that the color produced by it is of a higher quality than typical inkjet printers .

For one, inkjet printers print by spraying droplets of liquid ink from the nozzles. But if you magnify this result, you can still somewhat see the primary colors.

On the other hand, sublimation printers are capable of producing images with continuous tones of colors. These colors physically blend together.

We have shared much technical details about the process of sublimation printing on t-shirts (that's our forte!) Well, if you need more visual reference, check out the video below.

4. Advantages & Disadvantages of Sublimation 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 dye sublimation printing method.

Advantages

  • An all-over print effect on the t-shirts is achieved as ink is printed from seam-to-seam.
  • You can’t feel the ink as it will become part of the fabric and the end product is a soft-hand feel.
  • Long-lasting quality design as the printing becomes part of the fabric.
  • Thousands of colors to choose from!

Disadvantages

  • Type of t-shirt is restricted as only certain types of fabric are suitable for sublimation printing. eg suitable for 100% nylon / polyester material only.
  • The color of the t-shirt is restricted to white or light-coloured ones.

5. Sublimation printing can be used for the following Products from our T-Shirt Printing catalogue.

Apparels

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

Promotional Products

  1. βœ… All Bags
  2. βœ… All Towels
  3. βœ… All Drinkware
  4. βœ… All Lanyards
  5. ❌ All Embroidery Goods
  6. βœ… All Personal Care

6. Recommendations for Sublimation printing by MeowPrint

Sublimation printing is recommended for customers who are looking to print all-over full-coloured designs.

Popular apparels would be cycling apparels & jersey printed apparels as well as retail fashion brands.

For cycling team apparel, you can match this method along with embroidery for that professional team outlook.

Many of our corporate customers opt for sublimation printing as their designs and customization of colors throughout the apparel can be very complex.

The costs is not cheap but you get one-of-a-kind corporate apparel!

If you need cotton or honeycomb material for customization, then this method is not suitable.

However you can check out our custom-made services as well.

⭐ Our Recent Projects of Dye Sublimation Printed Products

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⭐ Customer Reviews

Still have reservations on our Dye Sublimation printing services? Let our customers' genuine feedback help you!
MeowPrint T-Shirt Printing
4.9
Based on 379 reviews
purchased windbreakers for my event from here. staff were very helpful and quick to respond to my queries :) reasonable price as well if you are going for bulk order. will definitely recommend!ps would advise if you are ordering windbreaker, to go for A4 printing at the back so it will look nicer!
Enya Tan
Enya Tan
13:54 04 Apr 21
Cecilia Chin
Cecilia Chin
10:07 01 Apr 21
Super efficient and delivered great quality :)
Kulvin Kaur
Kulvin Kaur
09:33 01 Apr 21
MeowPrint T-shirts are fantastic and their Dri-Fit T-shirts are of supreme quality. It does not smell after a long day wearing even after you perspire a lot. They are very comfortable and all the people who wears it have feedback to me that they love the shirts.Do consider making your T-shirts and apparels here! The customization and design was done perfectly and communication with sales person was very smooth.Thank you Xiao Fen from MeowPrint for such good service and wonderful experience!
Zhenshun Lim
Zhenshun Lim
10:24 30 Mar 21
Bloggy 45555
Bloggy 45555
01:55 30 Mar 21
Prompt replies and efficient service, received my orders in only 3 days upon confirmation! Process was also smooth and easy to understand, thank you :)
Joleen Chew
Joleen Chew
04:03 22 Mar 21
Recently ordered customised apron with MeowPrint for my school arts CCA. They work fast and very responsive to enquiries and other matters. The product is really good and the quality is great. I will definitely order again.
Eamon DV
Eamon DV
02:29 19 Mar 21
Great customer service and communication. Would recommend to order early to secure stock for shirts tho.
Edward Tan
Edward Tan
01:22 19 Mar 21
We ordered cotton t-shirts in bulk. The whole process was efficient and the staff were extremely helpful and patient. The shirts are of good quality too, and we are very happy with our purchase!
CF Staff
CF Staff
07:13 18 Mar 21
We have just received our 1st order of T-shirts from MeowPrint. The quality, color were good and sizes matching as indicated. Overall great experience and will order from them again. Thanks MeowPrint!
AIicia Koh
AIicia Koh
07:09 13 Mar 21
4.3 (2021) KWEK JIA YI FAITH
4.3 (2021) KWEK JIA YI FAITH
15:39 12 Mar 21
Fast and efficient of services from the time of placing the order to the time of collection. Instructions from the emails were clear and concise.The bulk was well packaging and the products were good. Whole process was smooth and will recommend to my colleagues should they need.
Lim Noi
Lim Noi
01:50 12 Mar 21
Fast replies and jackets are good quality. Printing felt pretty good and the delivery speed was about 1 week. Transaction was smooth and supplier was clear in instructions and answers.
WANG SIJIE _
WANG SIJIE _
09:45 08 Mar 21
This was our 3rd bulk order with MeowPrint. As with our previous orders, their responses via email were fast with clear and concise communications. Production and delivery of bulk shirt order was also earlier than expected. Highly recommended!
Verve Admin
Verve Admin
17:09 05 Mar 21
Amazing service, fast replies. The shirts are good qualitiy and printing is easy and cheap, recommended!
S2-C LICOBERTO HANEWA HALIM
S2-C LICOBERTO HANEWA HALIM
06:23 05 Mar 21
Good quality work and good service from friendly staff.
Hou Liang
Hou Liang
05:50 05 Mar 21
Thank you for your prompt service! It was easy to navigate your website to get estimated price quotes and you gave prompt replies to all of my enquiries :) Production time was also fast enough, excellent service
ws Law
ws Law
09:57 03 Mar 21
Ng Yu Tyan
Ng Yu Tyan
09:40 02 Mar 21
Great service and quality t shirts at an affordable price!
Chong Yan Fong
Chong Yan Fong
04:26 02 Mar 21
Easy instructions from the team, fast delivery and quality is good! Would definitely return to order more :)
Henry Lim
Henry Lim
01:18 02 Mar 21
Xiao has assisted me through the stresses of a few projects on very short delivery schedules. This one during CNY!! But she kept her cool and delivered beautifully printed Jackets in time! Great Job Xiao!! Thanks!!! See you on the next high stress job!! hehehehe....
Michael
Michael
05:43 26 Feb 21
Second time ordering with MeowPrint, and as usual they did not disappoint. Silkscreen logo printed on our shirts. The shirt is comfortable, and my shirt that's been used for 1.5 years has not shown any signs of wear & tear.Working with Xiao Fen was also a smooth and good experience as she contacted me on Whatsapp to update, on top of emails.Also affordable pricing!
Gelien Chia
Gelien Chia
09:09 25 Feb 21
Excellent service from the beginning. Only quip, would love to see the different sized shirts physically to make decisions instead of relying solely on a size chart. Hope that this can be arranged for future showroom visits!
Lukbondoi Muay Thai
Lukbondoi Muay Thai
07:16 25 Feb 21
S4cred Conn8tion
S4cred Conn8tion
04:10 25 Feb 21
excellent service and quality. the staff was really friendly on the phone and assisted me by resolving any doubts I had
benn chew
benn chew
15:18 24 Feb 21
Overall good experience getting our company tees from Meowprint. Patient with our query and our tees look great! Thank you Meowprint!
Nthirah Haslida
Nthirah Haslida
08:08 23 Feb 21
Nice store, very patient.
Linxin Hou
Linxin Hou
12:29 18 Feb 21
I have engaged them twice and both times, it was a smooth experience. The staff are helpful and there is clear and timely communication.
Joanne Ng
Joanne Ng
10:16 04 Feb 21
The service was excellent. However, for a higher customer rating, it would have been great if Meow Print had provided T-shirt sample sizes to the customers ( without any cost incurred). These will then allow the customer ( in our case young students) to try the sample Tshirts to choose the most fitting T-shirt size. In this instance, we had to place our order based on the measurements template provided by Meow prints. Point to consider?
Zaithoon Ibrahim
Zaithoon Ibrahim
11:20 03 Feb 21
This review came kinda late - printed t-shirts three months ago but till today, the t-shirts are still in great condition even though we wears them almost every day! Awesome quality, super affordable prices, prompt replies and great service from the team :) Self collection was fuss-free too! Definitely will order from them again!
brownie points
brownie points
01:58 30 Jan 21
Marirose Feril
Marirose Feril
08:18 21 Jan 21
Was looking around for a customized tote bag and they have attended to my needs with good recommendations on the size and various type of printing. RJ had helped to resize my artwork accordingly. Happy with their quick around so we are in time for our giveaways.
Vlux Lighting
Vlux Lighting
04:12 18 Jan 21
Fantastic and speedy customer service. The delivery was fast too. Thanks xiao fen for processing my orders.
Esther Lim
Esther Lim
00:56 15 Jan 21
MeowPrint replies fast and helps with your order. They are not only clear but also patient when it comes to various stages. Really good service!
Arrick Ang
Arrick Ang
17:31 14 Jan 21
Great customer service, always prompt in whatsapp replies and kept to the tight deadline, just in time for my store's grand opening! Thank you team!
deanna lee
deanna lee
07:26 14 Jan 21
MeowPrint provided excellent and fast service for my personalised notebook orders. The products arrived on time and in good condition. The staff was also patient with my queries and requests. Thanks MeowPrint!
Iqbal Firdaus
Iqbal Firdaus
03:10 13 Jan 21
Belle Ang
Belle Ang
16:07 05 Jan 21
Honestly I just shirt "Custom Polo Shirt Printing Singapore" and this was the first suggestive page.Enter and explored their wide variety of shirts they offered.Sent them an email and things just went smoothly.No screw ups , no time wasted. Pay half before confirmation, pay remaining after confirmation.Got what I wanted within a week.I appreciate the swiftness and will order from them again in the future.
Ithiphat Suthin
Ithiphat Suthin
13:15 28 Dec 20
Good customer service. Very fast and supportive email response. Good quality products. I'll order and suggest for my friends. Thank you!
Kat Lam
Kat Lam
07:55 28 Dec 20
Thank you Meow Print for your great and prompt service. Appreciate that you rushed the order before Christmas. The quality of the masks is great and the embroidery is meticulously done. Love it!
Grace Heng
Grace Heng
09:00 25 Dec 20
fast and reliable. recommended.
Jerry Choo
Jerry Choo
00:33 24 Dec 20
MeowPrint T-Shirt is super professional and has standard protocols. They know what they are doing and delivery of work was super fast and efficient.Thanks a lot @ Janice!
Jolie Lim
Jolie Lim
11:50 17 Dec 20
Prompt customer service and good quality shirts.
Hilda Tan
Hilda Tan
03:32 17 Dec 20
Good quality masks, fast communication and speedy delivery!
Faith Lee
Faith Lee
17:54 16 Dec 20
The shirts we ordered on Monday needed to be done by the same week Friday. Despite the rush, they still managed to finish printing our shirt and send it to us on Friday. Furthermore, the person (xiao fen) was very polite and understanding to the situation and accommodate with us accordingly to speed up the process. Thanks a lot Meowprint and team!
Zisheng Chia
Zisheng Chia
06:23 11 Dec 20
It was a great experience buying from Meowprint. The communication process is seamless, and there are a variety of products to choose from!
Tan Jie Ni
Tan Jie Ni
06:05 10 Dec 20
Brandon Man
Brandon Man
00:27 10 Dec 20
Quick replies. Prompt delivery. The services were top notched and the company is really satisfied with the end product.
sheik adam
sheik adam
06:14 02 Dec 20
Juliana Ong
Juliana Ong
10:59 01 Dec 20
Bo Jing
Bo Jing
04:53 26 Nov 20

πŸ‘‹ Ready To Customise T-Shirts & Apparels? 

We believe that T-Shirt Printing should be easy and hassle-free. Custom t-shirts represent the identity of a group of individuals, be it for an event or a corporate team. That is why our passionate crew are here to provide the best experience for you.

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Looking to embroider your logo with embroidery threads?
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heat transfer printing many colors

Digital Heat Transfer Printing

Looking to print Full-Colored Logos OR Individual Names / Numbers?
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Dye Sublimation printing

Looking to Print Full Coloured Designs with Ink inside the fabric?
Learn Sublimation Printing
Direct to garment picture

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Looking to print full-colored designs like a printer?
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πŸ’‘ Learn How To Customise T-Shirts from $5/pc! 

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πŸ‘‹ Get In Touch!

☎️ 9177 8449 (Xiao Fen)
πŸ“§ sales@meowprint.sg

πŸ•˜ Opening Hours

Mon - Fri: 9am - 6pm
Sat, Sun & Public Holidays: Closed

🏒 Showroom Visiting Hours

Mon / Wed / Fri: 10am - 5pm

πŸ“ 8 Boon Lay Way, #07-15, 609964
🚢 Visits strictly via Appointment only.

Meowprint T Shirt Printing Singapore

We are a custom T-Shirts & Apparels customisation provider in Singapore. We aim to provide the best quality, affordable prices, fast leadtime & the best customer experience for everyone.

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☎️ 9177 8449 (Xiao Fen)
πŸ“§ sales@meowprint.sg

πŸ•˜ Opening Hours

Mon - Fri: 9am - 6pm
Sat, Sun & PH: Closed

🏒 Showroom Visiting Hours

Mon / Wed / Fri: 10am - 5pm

πŸ“ 8 Boon Lay Way, #07-15, 609964
🚢 Visits strictly via Appointment only.

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