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Print a T-Shirt yourself

Print a T-Shirt yourself

You want to do a T-shirt print yourself and get first-class results? Thanks to modern accessories for household use, this is not only inexpensive but also relatively uncomplicated. With an appropriate printer and suitable transfer materials, you can create high-quality and long-lasting print results on your T-shirts.

The quality when printing on T-shirts or transferring a motif onto the fabric can vary greatly. You can achieve beautiful results with laser printer and transfer press. We would like to introduce this method to you in the following. Alternatively, transfers from foil to fabric are also possible with simple means such as an iron. You can buy ready-made motifs for this purpose, which can be simply ironed on. Their durability and appearance, however, do not come close to the quality of toner, transfer foil and possible finish paper.

T-shirt printing with toner transfer in colour and white

Printing on white T-shirts is beginner-friendly, but with white toners, such as Ghost White Toner you can achieve amazing results even on dark shirts. We will introduce you to the methods in detail: At the beginning we will start with the design of a desired motif for your t-shirt. For the toner transfer and the transfer with a transfer foil you are not limited to vector graphics like with vinyl printing. You can use a simple graphics program or other software.

If you are satisfied with the image, logo or lettering, the design will be mirrored and can be printed on a transfer foil (A-Foil) with a printer. We recommend the modern laser printers from HP, which are equipped with Ghost Toner Cartridges in black, yellow, magenta and cyan. For dark T-Shirts and more detailed color reproduction we also suggest to use a Ghost White Toner Cartridge. After the motif printing, the A-foil and the B-paper are brought together using the transfer press. Both are pressed for two minutes – at about 160 degrees Celsius. During this process, the glue of the B-paper is applied to the print and enables the later connection with the shirt.

Before we explain the transfer to the fabric in the last step, one more hint: There is also an alternative for T-shirt printing on dark backgrounds. Previously, there was a technical limit to the design for a long time when it came to the colour white. With Ghost White Tonern we trick the laser printer and can print white on coloured or dark surfaces. Instead of the black toner, we use a white one from Ghost. Since toners do not contain liquid but a powder, the replacement is immediately possible without cleaning.

White areas are simply created as black areas on the PC. The printer then thinks it is printing these areas in black – which of course it does not do. By the way, white toners support the luminosity of colours on dark surfaces. Simply use them as a base (underprint) for printing colourful motifs.

Once you have printed your films with coloured or white areas mirror-inverted and transferred the adhesive of the B-paper to the A-film by pressing it together, you can finally move on to the next step.

Now the T-shirt will be embellished with your print. You can cut the motif of the transfer foil and then position it on the T-shirt as desired. Now the transfer press is used again and pressed for 30 seconds. Afterwards the shirt and the foil must cool down completely before you can remove them and admire the result. By carefully unrolling the shirt you will achieve a good and above all safe result.

In the last step a further short pressing process is necessary. It has two tasks: First, pressing under heat increases the wash resistance of the T-shirt print. Secondly, you can achieve a glossy or matt finish by choosing the appropriate silicone paper.

T-shirt printing advantages

The presented method is very simple and allows the production of small and medium quantities. This makes it interesting for companies, hobby-creatives and advertising purposes. With a little more effort and other processes such as flex printing or sublimation printing, further fields of practice can be realized. Flexprinting convinces with a special haptic on the shirt, while sublimation realizes especially long-lasting, photorealistic images.

Toner transfer is somewhat more universal and – apart from one-time purchase costs for printer and press – a cheap way to let off steam in a number of ways. This is how you create high-quality, individualized products.

Photo credits:
ghazii –


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