Dye sublimation is another print process which we use to brand promotional clothing in particular our sports uniforms with breathable mesh fabrics. This printing technique utilises the chemical process called sublimation which is also the chemical process which produces dry-ice where solid is directly changed into a gas without going through the liquid stage. The gas is then changed back into solid.
Dye-sublimation "ink" used to brand promotional clothing is actually fine dye granules held in a liquid carrier. The dye-sublimation inks are printed with an ink-jet printer onto dye-sublimation paper, which holds the image in place. The image is then placed image facedown onto our blank imprintable sports clothing and heat-pressed.
The dye "sublimates" into a gas, and as long as the blank item has a polymer content or coating, with the help of the pressure being applied by the heat press, the dye is embedded into the surface of the blank sports clothing. The dyes then turn back into a solid and have now bonded with the polymer molecules that are present in the blank sports clothing which means the image is now permanently in the surface of the substrate.
The inks will only adhere to materials with a polymer content or coating and therefore we do not use this print technique on other promotional clothing such as 100% cotton t-shirts.