Garment vinyls from internationally-renowned HTV manufacturers Stahls are available in standard, speciality and printable HTV (Heat Transfer Vinyl) formats to suit all of your transfer printing needs, whether they are for fashion, leisure, sports or workwear:
What Are Garment Vinyls?
Garment vinyls, also commonly known as HTV or Heat Transfer Vinyl, is a specialist vinyl material for applying to substrates, primarily garment-related fabrics such as t-shirts, hoodies and polo shirts using a heat press machine to bond the vinyl to the fabric.
Garment vinyl is primarily sold in 500mm-wide rolls by the metre and has three main layers combined into one product; A polyester-based carrier (usually a sticky, semi-opaque material) which hold the different elements in place, the PU/PVC-based substance manufactured to the specific colour or effect, and the adhesive which is activated by the heat of the press machine to form the bond to the fabric.
Its cut on a plotter in reverse (mirrored) due to the adhesive being on the top of the three layers, with the excess vinyl “weeded” away leaving the intended design which is heat-applied onto the fabric usually with a heat press machine.
Which Garment Vinyl Should I Use?
The garment vinyl that you need will depend on the fabric that you are applying it to and the requirement of your job – There are a wide range of materials, some suitable for lots of garment types (such as Sportsfilm Extra T-Shirt Vinyl and CAD-Cut Premium Plus HTV Vinyl), more specialist ones (like EconoReflex Extra Reflective HTV) or if you’re aiming at high-fashion or promotional use (e.g. stag and hen parties), you may wish to look at purchasing some speciality vinyls (such as CAD-Cut Effect Holographic HTV or CAD-Cut Glitter HTV).
Any plotter should be able to cut our HTVs, but smaller plotter/cutters, such as the Silhouette Cameo and Silhouette Portrait, struggle to cut some vinyls (such as CAD-Cut Effect Holographic HTV and CAD-Cut Flock HTV) due to the limited blade angle and pressure achievable on the plotter.
If you also have access to a solvent or eco-solvent printer, there is a comprehensive selection of printable heat transfer vinyls, suitable for any job requirement. Print-and-cut HTVs run through a variety of solvent printers, including the Roland VersaCAMM, Mimaki CJV, and a selection of Mutoh, Uniform Seiko and HP Printers. The vinyls are available by the roll in a variety of widths, along with related application masks where required or recommended.
Why Use Garment Vinyls?
Garment vinyls are a commonly-used alternative to silk-screen printing as it’s a much more cost-effective method of printing in low quantities and for speciality finishes, such as Glitter HTV and Reflective HTV.
Each individual HTV material has its own qualities, each one having something that makes it essential in our range of products. Some products, such as the Sportsfilm Extra T-Shirt Vinyl, have incredible versatility, offering you an excellent finish on most garment types, and the ability to cut fine detail, especially on smaller designs. Other materials, like the CAD-Cut Premium Plus Sublistop (Subli-Dye Blocker) HTV are specifically designed to overcome particular issues, such as strike-through from subli-dyed garments.
It is usually possible to create a two (or even three) colour design using CAD-Cut materials, by cutting the individual colours and applying them separately onto the garment, particularly with vinyls such as Sportsfilm Extra T-Shirt Vinyl and CAD-Cut Premium Plus HTV Vinyl.
Please remember that not all materials are created equally and there are some simple questions to ask to determine whether the brand is likely to be of good quality:
- Is it easy to weed?
- Is it quick to apply?
- Can it be overlaid to produce multi coloured designs?
- What is the smallest size lettering recommended to be cut from the material?
- How washable is it?
There are an extensive range of standard and printable HTVs that will suit all of your transfer printing needs, whether they are for fashion, leisure, sports or workwear, with a choice of finishes including matt, gloss, glitter, flock, foil and rubber-like effects.
Most transfers produced today which are made from CAD-Cut vinyl will outlast the life of the garment that it is bonded to, providing it is applied and washed in accordance with the instructions provided. CAD-Cut materials are very durable, but to ensure that there aren’t issues we recommend that they are ironed on the reverse without the use of the steam function.
It is highly recommended to check the individual instructions for the different materials, but you can rest assured that you will be getting a product that will give you fabulous results for a considerable period of time.