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Discussion Starter #1
I was just wondering if most people posting in this section are strictly heat press, or do you offer screen printing too?

I am new to the business and use mostly chromablast for my heat press- but I would like to offer screen printing and embroidery to my customers too. How do I find someone that can screen print and embroidery for me at a good price? Someone told me not to use someone in my local are beacuse they will probably steal my customer- anybody had that problem?

Or should I go with the plastisol prints?

I would appreciate your comments, just not sure which direction to go.
Thank You!
Leslie
 

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Hi,

My business is currently a heat press only business but I am on the verge of adding DTG-(direct to garment) for smaller runs. I only use plastisol transfers for quality purposes but unless you have a large quantity, I have found the profits to be quite minimal in runs of like a dozen. I have to keep my pricing competitive with other screen printers in the area and although DTG machines are pretty expensive, the return on the investment will prevail...I hope!
 

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MVP J- Good luck with the DTG! I would love to go in that direction someday!

pshawny and MPV J- do you do your own designs? Most of my customers want me to design their logo ( some have one already)

I am just concerned about the quality of heat press products.
 

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What I mostly want to do is sell online using pre-made plastisol transfers. My website is still being work on to do just that.

I have done a few orders for custom shirts using heat press vinyl & I do the graphic designing myself. If the design has alot of colors I use JPSS transfer paper. I like the results & the customers are happy.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I haven't tried the JPSS yet, I do have some of the paper, I guess I should try it out and see what it is like- I just think most people want screen print... especially for large orders.
 

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You could also outsource the other work. You dont neccessarily need to tell the customer that you are outsourceing as long as you have the job ready for them to pick up when it is done :) I would talk to your local printers and emboidery people and see if they can give you basic price lists, let them know you will be bring them work on a regular basis, and that if they can work with you on price so that you can make some profit, then you would be willing to bring the work their way. It can work out for you, them and the customer :)
 

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I have just become heat press only. I do custom cut vinyl, plastisol transfers, and inkjet transfers.

Up until this week, I did embroidery as well. The economy being what it is, my business is way down, so I'm just completing my move from a retail shop to my home shop in my little garage. I just don't have room for the machine, and can't really justify the payment with business falling off so much.

I will continue to outsource embroidery, but that will only be for large jobs. Without an embroidery machine in house, it becomes nearly impossible to do the small and one off orders.

I used to do embroidery for the trophy shop across the street. He outsources everything. I would never have thought of trying to steal one of his customers, because I wanted to continue our mutually benefical business relationship. But, that's not to say that everyone has that attitude. In fact, I would not outsource to anyone local. The market is way too competitive, and all of us are too hungry for business right now.

One thing I will tell you from my experience though is if you're going to outsource embroidery jobs, take the time to learn something about embroidery. You really need to know about fabrics, and hooping, and digitizing in order to sell the jobs, provide a good product, and make a profit.
 

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MVP J- Good luck with the DTG! I would love to go in that direction someday!

pshawny and MPV J- do you do your own designs? Most of my customers want me to design their logo ( some have one already)

I am just concerned about the quality of heat press products.
My brother is a graphic designer so he helps me out if someone is looking for some help creating a design. Otherwise many people, (especially businesses) already have a design or logo for their company so I just use what they have. I do outsource to a company who makes the plastisol transfers for me and they have a book filled with templates to use as well.

Plastisol transfers are screen printed but just onto a transfer sheet then pressed, so the quality is near the same as traditional (direct) screen printing. Believe me, I had the same concerns as you do on quality before going into business and that is why I only use plastisol transfers.
 

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I have just become heat press only. I do custom cut vinyl, plastisol transfers, and ink jet transfers.

Up until this week, I did embroidery as well. The economy being what it is, my business is way down, so I'm just completing my move from a retail shop to my home shop in my little garage. I just don't have room for the machine, and can't really justify the payment with business falling off so much.

I will continue to outsource embroidery, but that will only be for large jobs. Without an embroidery machine in house, it becomes nearly impossible to do the small and one off orders.

I used to do embroidery for the trophy shop across the street. He outsources everything. I would never have thought of trying to steal one of his customers, because I wanted to continue our mutually beneficial business relationship. But, that's not to say that everyone has that attitude. In fact, I would not outsource to anyone local. The market is way too competitive, and all of us are too hungry for business right now.

One thing I will tell you from my experience though is if you're going to outsource embroidery jobs, take the time to learn something about embroidery. You really need to know about fabrics, and hooping, and digitizing in order to sell the jobs, provide a good product, and make a profit.
Really sound and valuable advice. I believe the same way. I would never dream of stealing a customer from a client. I do hats for 2 embroidery shops in town and don't even bid against them for school orders(on hats) I kick their butts on other garments. I get asked about hats from the school personnel and I explain my position. I think this helps my image out . I have seen a trend in going more the way of heat pressing. I think the ability to use plastisol transfer and the lack of chemicals and clean up is becoming more appealing to many shops. .... JB
 

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What I mostly want to do is sell online using pre-made plastisol transfers. My website is still being work on to do just that.

I have done a few orders for custom shirts using heat press vinyl & I do the graphic designing myself. If the design has alot of colors I use JPSS transfer paper. I like the results & the customers are happy.
It is great to sell worldwide on the internet, but don't neglect your local market. This is where your bread and butter money will come from, especially in the early days.
Yeah, work towards global domination, but start on your own doorstep.
The website is a must have for local or international sales.
Good luck and have fun.:D
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks for all the advice... I am going to look into the plastisol transfers, and try to find a source for embroidery and screenprint.
Leslie
 

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Thanks for all the advice... I am going to look into the plastisol transfers, and try to find a source for embroidery and screenprint.
Leslie
I am heat press only as well but market myself as a screen printer. Screen printing get's the customers attention then based on their needs I explain the options I offer.

1) JPSS for mutlicolor short run's. Be upfront about the process. I have printed samples I show. I printed several tee's and cut the shirt in half. One side has been washed several times and then let them compare to the original un washed print. Don't hesitate to sell this product. It is great print.

2) Plastisol transfers for average run of 50 +/- shirts 1 or 2 color single sided.

3) Out source screen printing (they don't know this) depending on quantity of shirts, colors and print locations.

Work with each customer and decide on the best solution for you (profit) and the best option for them based on their needs now and in the future if they will be repeat customers.

With a heat press you offer a lot of services. Show your wares and discuss the advantages of the different print options.

Good luck...;)
 

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I think the quality of plastisol transfers is actually better than direct screen printing. From custom too stock they are a better quality than your local screen shop. It is my my opinion but its a reality born of sampling.
 

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I will say I toured the www.acetransco.com location. David Shaw (the owner) gave me a tour and I was truly surprised at the work and time put into making a transfer. I watched the process of the machine laying the exact amount of ink each time and the care the workers take in placing the paper on the machine. I would go nuts doing that all day long. I then watched as each sheet was fed through the dryer and stacked a the other end. I then seen a second color applied at a second machine and the same process done again. I think the transfers are a much better way to go. I'm not cutting down screen printers because they are truly artist. I use only transfers because I think the way the product turns out and the ease of doing this type of apparel decoration. ..... JB
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I am also a little worried about pricing- it seems like screenprinting is less expensive- Do you find that the plastisol transfers are competitive with screenprinting?

colorfast: I like how you operate- I will give that a try. I just need to find a screenprinter and source for plastisol.

I am glad to hear from you all that the plastisol transfers are great quality.

Leslie
 

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I am also a little worried about pricing- it seems like screenprinting is less expensive- Do you find that the plastisol transfers are competitive with screenprinting?

colorfast: I like how you operate- I will give that a try. I just need to find a screen printer and source for plastisol.

I am glad to hear from you all that the plastisol transfers are great quality.

Leslie
I think when you look at pricing you see a difference, When yo take into account all the cost of chemicals,tools,and the clean up time. When all things are considered I feel the ease of transfers makes them the better method with the same results. .... JB
 
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