This is the new morning mantra before leaving the house. Now that we find ourselves in this new normal, where face masks are an everyday essential wear, we should also have the option to design our own custom face mask right? Custom face masks are great for small business, apparel companies and grocery stores. We have even helped supply custom face masks to US Treasury Banks. Making your own custom printed face masks could not be any easier when you shop at Blankstyle.com
Your Logo, Your Custom Mask
Have a logo already? Awesome! Simply visit Blankstyle Face Masks to view your mask options. You may add your choice of face mask to the shopping cart and select Add Decoration. From there you will be able to upload your own graphic for your face mask. Blankstyle’s art department will generate a digital mock up for your custom face mask and we will not print until you are 100% satisfied with your digital mock up. This way we know that you will be 100% satisfied with your custom face masks. Check out some of these custom face masks we have recently done!
But Which Mask Do I Choose?
With so many mask options, you might be unsure of which mask to use for your custom printed face mask. At Blankstyle we’re happy to throw you a bone! You might consider this face mask fan favorite ST2020 Face Mask. We have seen a great number of our customers use this mask style time and time again as their go to for their custom face masks. The ST2020 Face Mask is a 100% cotton 2-ply cloth face mask, which is the perfect selection for custom screen printing or for folks looking to do their own DTG printing or heat transfer applications. However Blankstyle is always happy to do the printing for you!
You might be asking yourself, “what the heck even is a DTG?” DTG stands for Direct to Garment. In other words, a digital printer much like the one you have in your office, but bigger. Try and imagine if you will, a desktop printer that prints directly onto a t-shirt! Pretty cool huh? For the last 12 years, DTG printing has been the “the kid” on the block. Over the years, DTG technology has made great advances. Thus positioning itself as a top player in the garment decoration industry. DTG seems to be the newer hot printing process, however, each print method has its pros and cons. Join me while we discuss and finally discover: DTG vs Screen printing and which one is better!
In 1996, an engineer by the name Matt Rhome invented the DTG printer. However, the new print process would not catch much traction until Brother put out its own DTG printer in 2004. Big corporations such as Brother, Epson & Ricoh have thrown their hat into the DTG arena. The process of DTG entails loading a single t-shirt onto a platen or table and then sending a print job from a Rasterize Image Processing program. Once the DTG printer receives the print job, you press the PRINT button and you’re off to the races. The size of the print and the settings used will dictate how long the print will take. Typically you can have a small print completed in 40 seconds or a big print completed in up to 2 and a half minutes.
Because the DTG t-shirt printing process is fully digital, this means you can print photographic images in less than a minute (if on a light t-shirt). Achieving the same effect through traditional screen printing would entail much more work (several screens/inks required). THIS is the beauty of DTG t-shirt printing; convenience and time saved (in some cases)
Pros of DTG:
Usually easy to get into business with a DTG machine as they are affordable to most business owners
You don’t need a lot of space (basically a desktop machine)
Any image that includes white ink, the garment then MUST be pretreated with a special pretreatment liquid. This pretreat makes it so that the white ink bonds do your t-shirt. Without the pretreat, the white ink will just fall and bleed right into the shirt and the results will not be favorable.
If too much pretreat is applied to the shirt, this may cause staining to the garment. If too little pretreat is applied, the white ink will not adhere to the shirt and the print will be ruined.
When printing on dark shirts, it will first print a white layer of ink or “Underbase Layer” and then the color on top. This two-layer process, depending on the size of the image can take anywhere from 2 to 4 minutes per print (far exceeding the time it would have taken to screenprint in some cases)
Maintenance of the DTG machine is a huge factor when it comes to the print quality and life of the printer. Without proper maintenance, the DTG printer will yield poor print results (banded lines through print, missing color, fuzzy prints, print head clogs). Lack of maintenance could be a high cost in repair, should a print head or ink tub clog. DTG machines are a use it or lose it type of equipment in that if the machine is left sitting with ink in the system and not being used, the machine will most likely clog and will require time and money in repairs in most cases.
Screenprinting: A process tried and true
Screen printing, on the other hand, is as old as dirt! Not quite but almost! You might be surprised that the screen print process has been dated as far back as 960-1279 AD. This print method was used in China around the time of the Song Dynasty. Screen printing made it’s way to the western world during the 18th century but did not become as popular in Europe until silk mesh easily accessible. Let us time travel to the present time where today we have screen printing very much dialed in with photo-reactive chemicals and equipment to make the process much easier.
With screen printing, 1 screen must be created per color within the graphic to be printed. So you’ll find that screen printers tend to base pricing based on how many colors are within the image. If you have a great deal of color within your graphic, this could more than likely drive up the cost significantly. Because with screen printing plastisol ink is the main type of ink used, you can expect the life of the print to really go along way, decades even! The quality usually has a texture to it that you can definitely feel, and visually the quality is very favorable. Nice and solid!
While screen printing is a manual process of a squeegee pulling ink across mesh screen of negative space, these days, there are automatic presses that will do most of the work for you, which is a screen printer’s dream! However one would still need to set up the t-shirts and create/set up the screens which do take some time. After screen setup, you’re ready to rock and print very easily.
Pros of screen
A tried and true process
Solid quality print that will last a very long time
You can print 1 color print lightning fast
Various types of plastisol ink can be used (glow, puff & metallic ink)
Cons of screen printing:
1 color per screen, multiple colors will result in higher price
Longer set up a time
Lots of expensive equipment needed
You must learn how to use all of the equipment
You need a lot of space for all of the equipment
So DTG vs Screenprinting, which one is better? This question actually cannot be definitively answered as both processes are great for different things! Instead of asking which print process is better, ask yourself, “which print process is best for this graphic?”. If you have a photographic image with tons of color, this is not a graphic you will want to screenprint has you will need to generate many screens to even get close to an accurate depiction of what the actual image is. DTG would be a far greater option to consider for a very colorful image.
Now say you have a 1 color graphic on dark shirts, which print process would you choose?? If you answered “screenprinting” you are correct! Screen printing would be the preferred print method as you will easily be able to knock out the print job as fast as you can pull a squeegee across the screen.
Questions to ask yourself
While both print processes have their own pros and cons, as do most things in life, you want to look at your graphic/print job and ask yourself the following questions.
Is this a high quantity order
Does this have minimal color
Then it is probably a
Does this print job have a low qty
Is this graphic over 5 colors
Then you’re most
likely looking at a DTG job.
At any rate, you can always reach out to us at Blanskstyle.com to help steer you in the right direction should you have these questions regarding which print method would be best for your design or project. Once you submit a quote on Blankstyle we will review your print order and from there we will be better able to determine which print method would be the best to proceed with. We would be more than happy to help point you in the right direction.
So you and the band have got the big tour coming up and you are going to need custom merch, or maybe you’re an artist looking to stock your online store of new merch, but you are uncertain of which t-shirt brand to go with (we know, there’s so many!). Well sit back, relax and let us break it down for you and make it simple by providing you 5 popular apparel options for custom band merch in 2020.
Gildan 5000: Rockers on a Budget
Artists like Singer-songwriter Taylor Hollingsworth and Kanye West know how to make it work on a budget. If you’re looking for a value brand type of shirt that is cheap, yet produces amazing print quality, the Gildan 5000 might be an option to consider using for your next run of custom band merch. The Gildan 5000 is one of our top-selling items as it easily one of the cheapest “go to” garments. It is 100% pre-shrunk cotton with a classic fit. This style could be reminiscent of a vintage kind of look/feel. With over 69 color options to choose from, this is a style you can have some fun with. In addition to a cornucopia of color options, you’ll also get a wide range of sizing options from small all the way to 5XL.
Bella Canvas 3001: The Perfect Mid-Level Shirt for custom band merch
Most brands you come across tend to do 1 thing really well, however, what’s great about Bella Canvas is that they seem to have worked in a little bit of magic into this particular style. The Bella Canvas 3001 (one of my personal favorites) seems to have it all and all in a competitive price point. They’re able to bring highly favorable quality for not so high of a cost. Now you can rock out with high-quality custom band merch without breaking the bank. The Bella Canvas 3001 offers a unisex style that is 100% ring-spun cotton shirt (super soft!) Perfect for screen printing or DTG printing. With over 52 colors to choose from and premium cotton fabric content, you can’t go wrong with this style.
American Apparel 2001: Hard to Beat a Classic!
I’ve been seeing the American Apparel 2001 as the “official” concert band tee for well over a decade now. Personally, I would always get excited when I saw that my favorite artist was using American Apparel. At this point, you could consider this a classic “go-to” type of shirt that will make your fans happy. This is a type of garment you can expect your fans to wear time and time again. Even more of a reason for them support their favorite band/artist! The American Apparel 2001 is considered a unisex style so it would have more of a slimmer fit fashion fit. This style is 100% ring-spun cotton, lightweight, with a tight-knit, making it a perfect surface for screen-printing and DTG printing.
Comfort Colors 1717/6014: Be Unique with your custom band merch
You’re an artist and you’re looking to move away from the standard type of band tee. Or maybe you want your merch to stand out from other custom band merch you’ve seen in the past, these are styles you want to consider. You’ll get a 6.1oz 100% ring-spun cotton garment with a ribbed collar. However, what makes these Comfort Colors styles interesting is that they are all garment-dyed. This results in beautiful unique colors that you just won’t find anywhere else. Doylestown, PA artist, Weyes Blood has done just this by using the Comfort Colors styles for tour and online store. The garment fit and color is reminiscent of a vintage feel, I think pairs amazingly well with the music of Weyes Blood.
Bella Canvas B8803: For your female fans
Every style we have talked about so far has been a unisex style, something all your fans will be able to wear. However, if you want to pull out all the stops, why not have some custom band merch made just for the women! To offer an option that is solely for women will be much appreciated by your fans and if you give them something that is of premium quality, they’ll wear it time and time again. Here we have a light-weight flowy muscle tank from one of my personal favorites, Bella Canvas. This is a must-have style that is designed with super soft poly-viscose fabric that drapes effortlessly around curves. With over 36 colors to choose from, you’ll have a good number of options to choose from when creating your custom band merch.