My name is Nina aka Pinky. I am very new to t-shirt making. I recently purchased a vinyl cutter and heat press. My main focus right now is custom sports apparel. So far I've had some sailing. I just completed personalizing names/numbers for my roller derby team. The ladies seemed really please with the outcome. I have a few shirts to do for our A team and this is where I need advise. On of the skaters uniform shirt is a 100% polyester mesh tank. Mesh Tank - Tank Tops - American Apparel Online Store
When the shirt was handed to me, I was told that I probably would not be able to directly apply the vinyl to this shirt but create a patch for it. Does anyone know if this is accurate? I know most football jerseys are this type of material and seem to have vinyl numbers on them. I was thinking I would be safe if I would lay a teflon sheet over the shirt to prevent direct contact. Am I on the right track?
Welcome to the forum. There are a couple of tricks to applying to mesh and polyester but you will be able to do it.
1. Some polyesters have dye that want to migrate from the garment through lettering when it is applied. If your lettering color is lighter than your fabric color than you will need to test for this migration. Take a small piece of white film (the size of a pencil eraser) and apply it to the inside of your shirt. Give it a day, if it turns a different color then you have dye migration issues and need to use a dye blocking film such as sub-stop. If it doesn't give you problems then any film will work for this purpose.
2. When applying mesh be sure to use a pad, pillow or teflon sheet in between the layers so the adhesive from your film doesn't stick the two layers of your garment together.
3. Mesh is one of those fabrics that is tougher to apply to. There are a couple brands of products that I know to work on polyester mesh (which is much easier to do than nylon mesh), use Eco-Film, Spectracut or Thermofilm. I am assuming the other brands such as Multicut and Thermoflex would work but I have done no testing to verify. As mentioned before use Sub Stop if the migration is an issue.
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