Introducing a New Way to DTG

March 23, 2021

game changer:
a newly introduced element or factor that changes an existing activity in a significant way

Among the many changes we’ve seen in the promotional apparel world in the last year or so, one of the most striking is the rise in popularity of Direct-To-Garment printing. Screenprinting and embroidery remain as popular as ever but DTG, a relative newcomer, has risen to the challenges of on-demand printing like no other.

While DTG is excellent for small runs or even one-off prints and can produce photorealistic images with vibrant color, it’s not a perfect system yet. Each shirt that goes through a DTG printer requires a pre-treatment to prevent the fabric from absorbing the ink before it’s cured. The pre-treatment process is an extra step requiring additional equipment and chemical supplies which can often result in a shirt which feels stiff to the touch, has a yellowish tinge, or a noticeable smell that needs to be laundered out.

Product experts at SanMar never see a problem they aren’t interested in solving, which is how Rob Crowley, SanMar’s Senior Director of Product, came to work with our Decorator and Digital Solutions team to develop a t-shirt that allows decorators to skip the pre-treatment step and go right to printing the shirt.

The Perfect Tri® DTG Tee from District® is the result. It’s a soft tri-blend in which the fabric itself is already prepared for DTG printing, before it’s even cut and sewn into a shirt. This means that the entire surface of the shirt — including the front, back, sleeves, even the neck and interior — is available to be printed on. It’s a perfect fit for the Perfect Tri family, matching both the colors and soft, buttery handfeel of that familiar fabric.

If you’d like to know more about our new DTG-ready shirt, we’ve got you covered. The process of developing the technology behind this new shirt took several months, a journey which Rob describes in detail in our recent webcast on the subject. Decoration expert Jason Murphy has been busy too, and has helped us prepare a video about what to expect when you open the box after ordering these shirts. Since the ink settings for each printer brand vary, we’ve made videos specific to each brand, including Brother, aeoon, Epson and Ricoh.

“The response has been absolutely incredible,” says Rob. Decorators always appreciate something that makes their job easier, and this shirt helps to make DTG a more accessible printing method for small and large shops alike. This is a shirt made with decorators in mind.

This last year has been marked by so many changes. We are proud to be able to introduce a new shirt that not only meets the rising need for on-demand printing, but changes the game to make it easier for everyone to have the opportunity to play.

How do you think you’ll be putting our new DTG-ready shirt to use this year? Let us know and join the conversation on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram.