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  1. #1
    evildoer's Avatar

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    Default shirt companies... how do they do it?

    Anyone own or work for a company that sells shirts with their own designs? I'm curious as to how larger companies that sell their own designs on a large variety of shirts/colors go about it. Do they screenprint them on hot peel transfers and then press as required? Print on demand? Print a shitload of shirts and hope they sell?

  2. #2
    Dusty!'s Avatar

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    Default

    the later option.

  3. #3
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    philaarts.com's Avatar

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    they subcontract with cafepress.
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  4. #4
    Platinum Rich's Avatar

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    yep, it's the latter. they print a ton of shirts but pay very little per piece. most shirt printers need work to keep their presses running so it's not uncommon for a client to score huge deals because of volume.

  5. #5
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    Small "sample" run for taking to market with the cost rolling back in to the bulk order if/when the time comes.
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  6. #6
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    philaarts.com's Avatar

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    "i pretty much think dave has nothing of any value to offer anyone on gigposters.com"-jay ryan
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  7. #7

    Default

    I have the anti Bush (how trite!) design that I made for myself, got comments on everywhere I went, and decided to make about 50 and offered them to shop in Indy, Chicago, St. Louis, etc. Had no trouble getting rid of them. If you have something hot, you might try to take some pre orders, and if you get enough, front the cash, get them printed, and make your returns within the month. That's if you can afford to front the money. For me, it was cost of shirts, which were all American Apparel, but I made at least double after selling them.

    Keeping hot split transfers works well too, if you're concerned that you may be sitting on a design for awhile.

    Do a little research, make friends with a few record stores and resale shops, and go from there.

    It's easy once you have a few places that like your work and buy from you consistently.

  8. #8
    evildoer's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by Numanoid

    Keeping hot split transfers works well too, if you're concerned that you may be sitting on a design for awhile.

    Do a little research, make friends with a few record stores and resale shops, and go from there.

    It's easy once you have a few places that like your work and buy from you consistently.
    Hot split transfers seem to make the most sense to me as well. That way if everyone thinks your design sucks you aren't stuck with a shitload of shirts you can't sell, just the transfers.

    But I've never used hot split transfers before. Is the quality pretty good compared to just screening straight on a shirt? How white on black shirts?

  9. #9

    Default

    Hot split transfers, if done correctly, will look and feel like a direct print. But to do them right, you need transfer inks, transfer paper, a powder glue (not necessary for cotton shirts, but it's a good safety net), and most importantly, a heat press. Whereas with some cold peel transfers you can just use an iron, though it takes a really long time to make sure it adheres properly. They are usually used for athletic lettering on split front jerseys, and other hard to print apparel. The opacity is excellent.

    Cold peel transfers are easier to work with. You can use standard plastisol inks, you don't need a heat press, though it helps if you think you're going to be doing high volume transfering. You can use a paper for hot split or cold peel applications. And you can be sure that if the consumer buys a transfer from you and decides to iron it on themselves, as long as you include accurate directions, they will have good results. The problem is that they look like a transfer. Very smooth, resting right on top of the fabric. The tend to hold up well, but with so many variables, it's easy for them to start peeling off if something isn't done right. If you do printing and you have a conveyer oven, it helps to run them through after they're printed. It helps them re-melt to the shirt, and gives them a bit more of a direct printed look.

    I hope this helps. Let me know if you have any questions.

  10. #10

    Default

    can you explain hot split transfers a little more? i may look into this, all i'd have to do is get transfer inks, print on transfer paper, and then heat press the design on?

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