Skip to main content

Everything About Sublimation Printing

By March 6, 2023No Comments6 min read
Everything About Sublimation Printing

Everything You Need to Know About Sublimation Printing

Sublimation printing is a process of transferring ink onto a material, such as fabric, ceramics, or metal, using heat and pressure. The ink is printed onto a special paper using sublimation ink, and then the paper is placed onto the material and secured in place. The material and paper are then put into a heat press, which turns the ink into a gas that is forced into the surface of the material. The result is a vibrant and durable design that becomes a permanent part of the material.

What is a sublimation printer?

A sublimation printer is a printer that is designed to print using sublimation ink, which can be used to transfer designs onto various materials, such as fabric, ceramics, or metal. These printers are different from regular inkjet printers because they use a unique type of ink that is specially formulated for sublimation printing.

The printer first prints the design onto a special paper using sublimation ink, and then the paper is placed onto the material and secured in place. The material and paper are then put into a heat press, which activates the sublimation ink and transfers the design onto the material.

What can I create with sublimation prints?

Sublimation prints can be used to create unique, personalized items ranging from mugs to apparel. Whether you’re looking for a perfect gift or just want something special made just for you, sublimation offers limitless possibilities.


Sublimation printing can be used to create:

Custom apparel: t-shirts, hoodies, sweatshirts, leggings, socks, etc.
Accessories: hats, caps, scarves, bags, backpacks, phone cases, keychains, etc.
Home decor: pillows, blankets, coasters, mugs, plates, clocks, photo frames, etc.
Personalized gifts: photo albums, photo frames, calendars, coffee mugs, etc.
Promotional items: branded t-shirts, tote bags, water bottles, etc.
Sports uniforms: jerseys, shorts, socks, etc.
Signage and banners: custom flags, banners, and signs for events, trade shows, and more.

Sublimation printing offers the advantage of producing high-quality, full-color prints that are long-lasting, vibrant, and resistant to fading, peeling, or cracking. Therefore, it’s a popular method for creating unique and personalized products for both personal and commercial use.

Sublimation printing by markus spiske hqCEQTc5gZA unsplash Everything About Sublimation Printing

Sublimation vs Screen Printing

Have you ever wondered what method of printing is used to create custom apparel and other products? Sublimation printing and screen printing are two popular choices, each with its own set of pros that make them unique. While they may appear similar at first glance, there are some crucial distinctions between the two processes, so let’s take a closer look.

Printing: Sublimation printing involves printing the design onto a special paper using sublimation ink and then transferring the design onto the material using heat and pressure. Screen printing involves pushing ink through a stencil, or “screen,” onto the material being printed.

Colours: Sublimation printing offers full-colour printing capabilities, while screen printing is typically limited to a smaller number of colours.

Options: Sublimation printing is best suited for materials made of polyester or polyester blends, while screen printing can be used on a wider variety of materials, including cotton, silk, and nylon.

Durability: Sublimation printing produces a permanent, durable print that is resistant to fading, peeling, and cracking. Screen printing can also produce durable prints, but the longevity depends on the quality of the ink and the printing process.

Cost: Sublimation printing can be more expensive than screen printing due to the cost of the specialized sublimation ink and paper. Screen printing can be more cost-effective for larger orders, as the cost per print decreases with higher quantities.

When it comes to printing projects, there are a few major methods available but choosing the right one depends on your project needs and financial constraints. Sublimation has its strengths for certain scenarios while other circumstances could make screenprinting an ideal choice. No matter what you choose, each method can help create something unique.

silk printing by emarts emarts ZCTh4f4mv18 unsplash Everything About Sublimation Printing

What designs can I use in sublimation printing?

In sublimation printing, you can use a wide range of designs and file types. Generally, you can use any design that can be printed on paper, as the printing process involves transferring the design from paper onto a material using heat and pressure. However, there are some common types of designs and file formats that are used in sublimation printing.

Vector files: Vector designs are created using mathematical equations and can be scaled up or down without losing quality. Common vector file formats include AI, EPS, and SVG files.

Raster files: Raster designs are made up of individual pixels and are best suited for photographic images. Common raster file formats include JPG, PNG, and TIFF files.

Quality printing isn’t something you can take lightly. To get the absolute best results, aim for a resolution of 300 DPI or higher when designing your project. This will help provide an eye-catching, crisp finish that is sure to impress.

The Sublimation Mega Bundle


Sublimation printing is a versatile and high-quality printing method that is used to transfer designs onto a wide range of materials, including fabric, ceramics, and metal. It offers full-colour printing capabilities, produces durable and long-lasting prints, and is ideal for creating customized and personalized products.

Printing technology has come a long way, making sublimation printing an accessible and cost-effective option for both individual needs and businesses. This method of printing is becoming more popular as the days go by due to its affordability paired with vibrant results.

Whether you’re looking to create custom apparel, promotional items, or personalized gifts, sublimation printing can help you bring your designs to life in a vibrant and impactful way.


Design Assets

  • Instant Access
  • Free Content Updates
  • Constantly Growing Library
  • Unlimited Downloads
  • Simple Licensing
Design Assets Premium Everything About Sublimation Printing
Dreamstale Badge Grey Everything About Sublimation Printing

By Dreamstale

Get creative with our free & premium design resources. Download a vast collection of graphic design materials, such as graphics, sublimation designs, icons, textures, stock photos and more.
Plus get access to Photoshop tutorials & inspirational articles that will spark your imagination.