How to Sublimate A Shirt – Sublimation Prints for Shirts

Customizing apparel is a fun, cost-saving, and creative way to upgrade your wardrobe or give gifts to your loved ones. I usually do t-shirt sublimation with my worn stuff to play a role in a sustainable fashion. If you’re ready to give a chance to your inner fashion designer and want to know how to sublimate a shirt? Stay tuned to this informative blog we will discuss how to sublimate shirt in detail.

How To Sublimate A Shirt – T-shirt Sublimation

What is Sublimation

Sublimation is the process that involves transferring dyes or hues onto the material. That happens with the help of different methods like heat transfer, laser technology, and so forth. The materials used in sublimation printing are technically known as substrates, and the examples are fabric, paper, glass, vinyl, PVC, etc. In this article, we will stick to the fabric materials like pure cotton, mixed cotton, etc., to explain how to do sublimation shirts.

How To Make Sublimation Shirts – Shirt Sublimation

Before we move on to how to sublimate a shirt, I want you guys to know a little about the chemistry of this process. Fabric is a porous material and upon heating, its pores become open this way dyes are integrated or indulged into those pores permanently. The same chemistry applies if you are sublimating other products like sublimation on canvas, glass, nylon etc. Once you complete the printing process, you need to dry the shirt and it’s ready to wear.

To bring out a perfect shirt sublimation you’ll need these basic materials:

  • A sublimation printer
  • An excellent quality substrate
  • Genuine sublimation inks

Please never try to use a regular printer for sublimation as you’ll ruin the machine as well as your time, money, and effort. A sublimation printing device is designed to undergo a specific process, so you need to stick to that only.

Secondly, the substrate you use is of great concern as low quality material is less durable, resistant, and looks average. Pure polyester is the top-notch substance to make a sublimated shirt for its strength and capacity to hold the ink. While you can consider any fabric with high polyester or cotton ratio to undergo this process nicely.

Over that, the inks you use matter a lot. As cheap quality toners are prone to fading and might break apart from the fabric after use. That’s why you should use excellent quality USA-made inks to get the best sublimation prints. In my suggestion, one should use the genuine ink of your printer’s brand. For instance, if you’re using an Epson printer, the ink tanks or cartridges manufactured by the same brand are most reliable.

How To Make Sublimation Designs For Shirts

In order to make sublimation designs for shirts, you’ll need the following things:

  • A sublimation printer
  • Sublimation ink
  • Sublimation paper
  • Polyester shirt
  • Lint roller
  • Heat-press
  • Butcher paper
  • Heat resistant tape

Please gather all the required materials in line before you start the process to avoid any hassle. Once you’re done with materials, it’s time to pick your favorite design and print it onto the paper; it could be a logo, graphic, artwork, picture, or anything.

  1. Finalize your design, create it from photoshop, illustrator, corel draw or from other software or download it.
  2. Now print the design on sublimation paper by using sublimation printer.
  3. Preheat the heat press machine according to the requirements mentioned on heat press/
  4. Place the butcher paper beneath the fabric. In the case of shirts and pillows, you need to set the butcher paper inside the apparel to get the perfect results.
  5. Adjust the shirt on the butcher paper and keep the printed sheet over the fabric in a way that the design is facing the shirt. Tape it down if you find it moving.
  6. It’s time to begin the heating for 45-55 seconds and your sublimated shirt will be ready shortly.
  7. After that lift the heat press carefully remove the butcher paper and sublimation design.
  8. Give the shirt some time to cool it at room temperature.

It’s a complete process how to sublimate a shirt and how to make sublimation designs for shirts.

Tip to Sublimate A shirt

  • Please make sure that the fabric is wrinkle-less.
  • Paper doesn’t move to get the best results. Tape it if it is moving.


How to dye sublimation printing t-shirts?

The process is pretty simple and fun; you need to decide on the shirt and design of your choice. Set the heat press and place butcher paper beneath the substrate and printed sheet over the substrate in a way that the design is facing the shirt. Tape it down to avoid any error in printing. Once you’ve set everything correctly, begin the heat press process to make a picture perfect sublimated t-shirt.

How to make shirts with a sublimation printer?

Sublimation printers are used to transfer the design like logo, captions, images, graphics, artwork, etc., onto the substrate including fabric. For this purpose, you’ll need the best sublimation printer, a polyester shirt, genuine inks, and some additional accessories. To know more, please swipe up and read how to sublimate a shirt.

How to make dye sublimation shirts?

Making dye sublimation shirts is not a big deal unless you have a promising sublimation printer, an excellent-quality fabric, and inks. Download your favorite design and print it out onto the paper; now place the paper over the fabric and sublimate it using a heat press.

What shirts are good for sublimation?

Polyester is the most reliable material for sublimation because of its excellent ink holding capacity, porous surface, resistance, and stretchability. Shortly, any fabric with high poly and cotton ratio is good for sublimation.

Final Thoughts

Sublimation has evolved in previous years and for its increased hype in today’s market. A lot of people now use it as an earning source. After this detailed discussion I am sure you have come to know “how to sublimate a shirt”. This is comprehensive article regarding the sublimation process, materials required, and tips. It is always great to give a chance to your creativity, so don’t waste your time and get a printer home to follow this effortless way now.

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