Should you digitally #print your work wear?

If your goal is to achieve a professional look for your employees, you may have considered digitally-printed work wear. Digital printing can be an effective way to get your logo onto just about any article of clothing, from shirts, to hats and even to tote bags.

But is digital printing the best way to go? Just as with anything, this form of printing does have its pros and cons.

The Pros of Digital Printing

Many employers choose digital printing due to its longevity. When an image is printed digitally, it is printed into – and not onto – the fabric. This makes any image far less likely to fade as it is washed. Those needing corporate clothing and other work wear often choose this form of logo printing, as it means longer-lasting employee uniforms. This means money saved for the company.

In addition to being a method which dramatically extends the life of work wear, digital printing is also fast and affordable. This means that an entire office can have their branded work wear in virtually no time at all. As well, smaller orders work well with digital printing, meaning that any company, large or small, can take advantage of corporate work wear using this method.

Where screen printing usually incurs an extra charge per colour, digital printing does not. This is because all colours are set into the fabric at once, requiring no additional steps to be taken. This means that you have a far higher number of potential colours to choose from when deciding on digitally-printed corporate wear.

The Cons of Digital Printing

Although there are far more colour choices with digital printing than there are with other methods, those who choose digital printing will have to deal with lighter shades. This means choosing lighter-coloured clothing, as digital printing will not display correctly in dark grey, black or navy blue.

The fabric you have chosen must also be compatible with digital printing. Fabrics like pure cotton will likely not be the best for digital printing. Where this is the case, it might be a better idea to choose embroidery or screen printing. It is possible to print digitally on darker coloured fabrics; however, this will require a white underlay, which is likely to cost more, and may show through the edges of the design.

The consistency of colour matching available via digital printing may also be an issue, due to the way in which the ink is mixed. Colours are harder to match with digital printing, as the printing machine mixes them, and not an actual person.

Digital Printing Guidelines

Deciding on the type of printing that will work best for your garments is not easy. Even the following general guidelines will not apply to everyone. However, it can give you a good place to start.

You may wish to consider digital printing if:

  • Your budget is small, or you want to save money;
  • If you have artwork or a logo that contains a lot of colour or effects like shading;
  • Need a smaller amount of clothing printed;
  • Aren’t concerned about colours matching perfectly.

Screen printing may be the best choice for your company if:

  • You have a higher budget or prefer to spend more on work wear;
  • Have a logo that contains 6 or fewer colours;
  • Are concerned about having all colours match exactly across all piece of clothing;
  • Need to have a large number of shirts printed.

Digital and screen printing are two very different methods. As such, they should each receive equal amounts of consideration so that you know exactly what to expect.

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