Direct-To-Garment (DTG) Printing

Direct-to-garment is a custom clothing printing solution that originated in the state of Florida in 1996. Since then, it’s become one of the most widely used and most affordable custom apparel printing solutions in the world. When compared to standard screen printing, Direct-to-garment, or DTG printing has a number of benefits. With flexibility in terms of color, it’s an excellent choice for those that are looking for custom t-shirts.

The DTG Printing Process

When compared to screen printing, direct-to-garment printing is similar to a standard inkjet paper printer. While screen printing uses a series of screens and heat presses, direct to garment looks and works similar to a standard printer. DTG printing takes advantage of a specialized, aqueous or water-based inkjet technology. Direct to garment printers usually have a platen design, which holds the garment in a fixed position.

Once the article of clothing is in place, printer inks jet or spray onto the textile through the print head. Before the ink is sprayed to match the design, the garment is put through a PTM, or pre-treatment machine. Pre-treatment machines heat press the fabric so that the individual fibers are flattened at a microscopic level. Flattening the fibers provides a smooth substrate for printing, much like a piece of paper. Additionally, pre-treatment also allows for a stronger bond between the garment fiber and inks to allow for a long-lasting and vivid design. When fabric is pretreated before DTG printing, it creates a chemical reaction between the material and the ink that promotes quick-drying and long-lasting designs. When all of these moving pieces work together, it creates a vivid, incredibly colorful, and long-lasting design. Keep in mind, DTG printing works best on natural fabric like cotton.

Benefits Of Direct-To-Garment Printing

Direct-to-garment printing offers a number of benefits when compared to the standard screen printing process.  Since Direct-to-garment printers offer a much easier process than screen printing, providers like Pork Chop Screen Printing are able to offer these types of custom garments on a much smaller scale than screen printing. Additionally, there is no limit to the colors that can be used for direct-to-garment printing. Any design or color combination you can imagine can come to life through direct-to-garment printing.