Custom Digital Printing Capabilities & Applications

Digital printing, or direct to garment (DTG) printing, is a relatively new decoration type that is commonly used as an alternative to screen printing. Digital printing is typically used over screen printing for either smaller orders or designs with greater detail or more colors. Check out more of the differences between digital printing vs. screen printing or learn more about how digital printing is done here. Here at Merchology, we utilize digital printing strictly for hard goods like water bottles, notebooks, and electronics. However, we'll explain how digital printing can be used on apparel as well.

Custom Digital Printing Options Include…

Applications for Digitally Printed Products

Digitally Printed Moleskine Notebook

When to use Digital Printing as a Decoration Method

Digital printing is an extremely versatile decoration method when it comes to design and color capabilities. However, it does still have some limitations. Digital printing is probably the best choice if…

  • Your design or logo is highly detailed or colorful – digital printing is similar to printing out an image from a printer on a piece of paper. There really isn’t much you can’t do in terms of design detail and colors.
  • You are placing a small order on custom tees – because there is less set up involved with digital printing than screen printing it makes it more cost effective for smaller orders.
  • You are individually customizing each item – digital printing or heat transfer are the go-to decoration methods for individually customized apparel like jerseys with numbers or names.

When Should I Consider a Different Decoration Method?

  • You are not printing on 100% cotton clothing – by far the biggest limitation to direct to garment digital printing is that DTG machines can only print on material made from 100% cotton. If you are looking to customize apparel made with polyester or another fabric look into embroidery, screen printing or heat transfer. NOTE: you can utilize digital printing on hard goods using a different type of digital printing machine.
  • You are placing a bulk order – digital printing gets more expensive than most other decoration prices with larger order sizes.
  • You are printing on dark fabric – this one can go either way, because sometimes digitally printed designs look great on dark fabric and other times multi-colored designs tend to not show up as well on dark fabric.

What Fabric and Products can be Digitally Printed on?

DTG machines can only on 100% cotton fabric for apparel. Because of this limitation, Merchology only utilizes digital printing as a decoration method for hard goods like water bottles, electronics, and promotional products.

Next Steps

If you want to learn more about how digital printing is performed check out our step by step guide to digital printing, otherwise you’re ready to shop for your digitally printed custom apparel! Not sure if direct to garment printing is the customization option for you? Check out our comprehensive Custom Decoration Methods Guide or contact us with any decoration questions you may have.