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Discussion Starter #1
Hello All,

This forum is truly informative, and valuable to us getting started.

I have read many threads here to educate myself and skip the most basic asked and answered questions; however, I still have a few. I thank you in advance for your advice.

1. Can I use the same vinyl cutter for printing stickers as I would use for transferring to T-shirts?

2. I plan on using illustrator for my text, and possibly photoshop for one or two color designs. For the designs, would you recommend using vinyl or having transfers made?

3. I am planning to also move into hats (flex fit) and watch cap (knitted beanies). Any opinions on emroidery v. heat pressed logo/text?

4. In regard to printing vinyl stickers, if I want to add a drop shadow to the text. How much does the process change?

5. If I want to take a B&W photo and desaturate it in Photoshop so that it is either black or white depending upon the T color. What is my best option for producing the image to transfer to a T? I am considering the epson r1800, or could I still use vinyl?

I will be doing a low volume of shirts, mostly demand based.

Thanks.
 

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Hello, yes you can use the same vinyl cutter you use to make stickers, that's what I do. It is just the vinyl that is different. You need to buy heat applied vinyl like Thermoflex plus. Simply make your design, cut it, weed it, then heat press it onto the apparel.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Muncheys said:
Hello, yes you can use the same vinyl cutter you use to make stickers, that's what I do. It is just the vinyl that is different. You need to buy heat applied vinyl like Thermoflex plus. Simply make your design, cut it, weed it, then heat press it onto the apparel.
Thank you for the response Muncheys. Can you recommend a type of vinyl for the stickers? Thanks Rodney as well for your help.
 

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Re: Vinyl Questions

T-Grrl said:
1. Can I use the same vinyl cutter for printing stickers as I would use for transferring to T-shirts?
Yes, you can as Muncheys has already mentioned. You have to use transfer vinyl like ThermoFlex Pluss and cut it in reverse (mirror cut).

2. I plan on using illustrator for my text, and possibly photoshop for one or two color designs. For the designs, would you recommend using vinyl or having transfers made?
Do you already have the vinyl cutter? If you do, and you are doing somewhat simple designs and text on dark colored tees, then I would use cut vinyl. If you end up doing larger quantities, then consider transfers or screen printing. Cutting and weeding a simple design from vinyl is not that hard to do. ThermoFlex weeds much easier than regular sign vinyl. You will have to adjust your cutters settings a little perhaps. It also depends on the hand (feel) of the finished products you prefer.

3. I am planning to also move into hats (flex fit) and watch cap (knitted beanies). Any opinions on emroidery v. heat pressed logo/text?
I would always prefer embroidery for hats myself.

4. In regard to printing vinyl stickers, if I want to add a drop shadow to the text. How much does the process change?
By vinyl stickers, are you talking about the vinyl transfers or the regular vinyl decals? I will assume you are talking about vinyl transfers for t-shirts since you are asking on these forums. The process of adding a drop shadow doesn't really change that much, other than the fact that you will be applying two colors. (one at at time) In your design program, you set up your drop shadow. Unlike regular vinyl decals, you will not want to have overlapping colors on t-shirts. However, I think Munchies said that he does this with no problem. (You can correct me if I'm wrong Munchies.)

Line up and press your main color first and line up and press the drop shadow second. If you are going to layer the colors, then you press the shadow color first and press the main color on top of it.

5. If I want to take a B&W photo and desaturate it in Photoshop so that it is either black or white depending upon the T color. What is my best option for producing the image to transfer to a T? I am considering the epson r1800, or could I still use vinyl?
Photos can be tricky in vinyl. Plus, your photo has to be simplified, and converted into a vector file before the cutter work with it. That's not to say that a photo cannot be turned into something a vinyl cutter can deal with, but I'd go right to the epson for that on lighter colored tees.
 

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Re: Vinyl Questions

T-Grrl said:
.... Can you recommend a type of vinyl for the stickers? ...
Vinyl Transfers = ThermoFlex Plus, or one of the other vinyls made by Specialty Materials

Regular decal vinyl = Oracal

I mention decals because of your use of the word stickers.

I would use the term vinyl transfers when talking about heat pressed vinyl for tees.
Thermoflex will not actually stick to anything without the heat press as there is no adhesive like decal vinyl.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the help Decal D. I did mean decals when I wrote stickers. I know this is a T-Shirt forum, but I figured many others produce decals as well as Ts. One last question in regard to decals. I want to prduce both one color rub on vinyl decals as well vinyl decals with graphics (i.e. text and a design). Would I use Oracal for both of these?
 

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Re: Vinyl Questions

T-Grrl said:
Thanks for the help Decal D. I did mean decals when I wrote stickers. I know this is a T-Shirt forum, but I figured many others produce decals as well as Ts. One last question in regard to decals. I want to prduce both one color rub on vinyl decals as well vinyl decals with graphics (i.e. text and a design). Would I use Oracal for both of these?
Yes, although there are other brands that are good also.
In an effort to keep the discussion of sign and decal vinyl to a minimum here at T-Shirt Forums, I'd like to invite you to a site that is very helpful at www.signs101.com
You will find an abundance of information there to help you.

There are many there that also use their vinyl cutters to produce some heat-pressed clothing, but they focus on signs.
 

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Re: Vinyl Questions

Decal_Designs...thanks for sharing the signs101.com link. We are looking into buying a cutter so we can do other things beside the transfers for heat pressing t-shirts.

Susan:tipthank:


Decal_Designs said:
Yes, although there are other brands that are good also.
In an effort to keep the discussion of sign and decal vinyl to a minimum here at T-Shirt Forums, I'd like to invite you to a site that is very helpful at www.signs101.com
You will find an abundance of information there to help you.

There are many there that also use their vinyl cutters to produce some heat-pressed clothing, but they focus on signs.
 

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Re: Vinyl Questions

Decal_Designs said:
Photos can be tricky in vinyl. Plus, your photo has to be simplified, and converted into a vector file before the cutter work with it. That's not to say that a photo cannot be turned into something a vinyl cutter can deal with, but I'd go right to the epson for that on lighter colored tees.
Does anyone know of any tutorials online to turn a photo into a 2 color vector based image so it can be used with a vinyl cutter. I've looked and I've run into some Carmen Electra tutorial in a bunch of places but it always links to the same page and that link is always down.

Or if someone has a quick explanation on how to do it in Photoshop or CorelDraw, I'd really appreciate it!

Thanks a lot!
 

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Re: Vinyl Questions

kilerb said:
Does anyone know of any tutorials online to turn a photo into a 2 color vector based image so it can be used with a vinyl cutter. I've looked and I've run into some Carmen Electra tutorial in a bunch of places but it always links to the same page and that link is always down.

Or if someone has a quick explanation on how to do it in Photoshop or CorelDraw, I'd really appreciate it!

Thanks a lot!
q: how does the full color photo look like if you print it out on paper in black with any white as a clear ?
Can you work with that ? or not enough detail for your needs ?
 

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Re: Vinyl Questions

T-BOT said:
q: how does the full color photo look like if you print it out on paper in black with any white as a clear ?
Can you work with that ? or not enough detail for your needs ?
I'm sure it would look fine, but how do i change a full color photo to 2 colors like that and vectorize it?
 

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Re: Vinyl Questions

kilerb said:
I've looked and I've run into some Carmen Electra tutorial in a bunch of places but it always links to the same page and that link is always down.
If you're looking for a site that's been shut down, you can search for it on the Web Archive. This is a very handy site that has old backup copies of many, many Internet pages =)
 
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