Screen printing is a printing technique whereby a mesh is used to transfer ink onto a garment, except in areas made impermeable to the ink by a blocking stencil. A blade or squeegee is moved across the screen to fill the open mesh apertures with ink, and a reverse stroke then causes the screen to touch the garment momentarily along a line of contact. This causes the ink to wet the garment and be pulled out of the mesh apertures as the screen springs back after the blade has passed. One color is printed at a time, so one screen per color is required to produce a multicoloured image or design.
Direct to garment printing (or DTG) is a technology that became widely available in the commercial market in the mid-2000s. Unlike traditional labor-intensive screen printing , DTG utilizes inkjet printing technology to send a full color, photo quality, image directly from a computer to a digital printer with a garment loaded into it. High tech print heads then jet CMYK ink onto the garment and recreate the digital artwork. These inks are water-based, breathable, and eco-friendly and are specifically designed to adhere to 100% cotton fabric when heat cured. At Quick Tees our Brother DTG printer does not print white ink so we only print DTG on 100% cotton, white or light colored shirts. With DTG we can size the image to fit the shirt size, unlike screen printing that requires another expensive full set of screens for each size desired. Finally, DTG allows us to print you a sample shirt so you can see the finished product before you place your order.