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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone. I am extremely new to the shirt making business and have a question for you "pros" out there....My designs feature a photograph with text added. When I got my first quote, they said it was a four color screen print process and expressed no concerns for quality whatsoever. The second vendor I checked with expressed conern with the final quality of the shirts and suggested that I go with heat press instead. My concern with the heat press is longevity in the wash and how it will look. I don't expect the screen printed ones to turn out exactly looking like a picture, I just want them to look great in overall quality. I feel like the heat press version will look too "homemade". Does anyone have any thoughts? Thanks!
 

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Have someone imprint a shirt for you using a heat press then decide. I have been imprinting using a heat press for 7 years now and have no problem with image quality or washing if done correctly.

I personally don't like photos screen printed. I can get a clearer image doing it with a heat press. Depending on how many shirts you do at a time, cost will be an issue. Around here you are hard pressed (no pun intended) to find a screen printer who will do less than 24 tees. Where a digital imprinter (heat press) can do one.

Hope this helps
 

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If you want to retain the full color photographic effect, you'll be hard pressed to find something that will work better than heat transfer. If you use quality paper, ink, and a real heat press, it'll last a long time and keep it's quality without fading.
 

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As long as you understand that the photos won't look exactly like a JPEG when they are screen printed (since it is a matter of ink being printed through dots), I think you may be very pleased with the turnout.

The company I work with has printed photos on shirts for several customers and what it boils down to are customer expectations. Some customers love the way the photos turnout and are pleased that they got a quality screen printed shirt, others are a bit unsatisfied because the final product doesn't match their JPG exactly.

I much prefer screen printed shirts, but it's really a matter of preference which you choose.
 

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It also depends on how many you want made; if you just want a couple (less than 10) you're again better off with heat transfer because most screen printers have a minimum of at least 12, many even 24.

I could make you up one with heat transfer if you want, though you might want to look for someone local to save on shipping charges.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks all for the great info. I think I'm going to go with screen printing. I'm not expecting it to look exactly like a photo, I just want high quality as far as the general look goes if that makes sense. I'm starting out with a 125 just to see how well they sell before I jump into my other designs. Thanks again everybody.
 

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If you want to retain the full color photographic effect, you'll be hard pressed to find something that will work better than heat transfer. If you use quality paper, ink, and a real heat press, it'll last a long time and keep it's quality without fading.
any recommendations on quality ink, paper and press?
 
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