DTG – Direct-to-Garment Printing

Isn’t that just screen printing? Great question person who is asking questions before I’ve typed anything! Screen printing and Direct to Garment Printing (also known as DTG) are VERY different. Both have advantages and disadvantages. One of the biggest advantages for Direct to Garment Printing is that it makes smaller batch sizes and a design with tons of colors much more affordable.

DTG – Direct-to-Garment Printing

How does Direct to Garment Printing work?

Let’s take a moment to talk about printers, like actual printers like what you have next to your computer. There are a bunch of different kinds going all the way back to that Johann guy who straight up carved a bunch of letters, lined them up, put ink on them and called it the printing press. Since then there have been mimeograph, dot matrix, laser, and then the ink jet printers most of us are familiar with. Thing is, Direct to Garment Printing works a lot like those ink jets. It’s a little more sophisticated than that, and in some cases there is some pre-treating of the garment for maximum quality and adhesion. Oh and special tunnel dryers to cure the ink.  However, the concept overall is basically the same. LOL

The biggest difference between your ink jet printer and ours is that yours prints on paper where ours actually acts as a dye in cotton fabric.  Better compared to a tattoo in that regard.  Note here –the higher the cotton content of the garment the better the results!

How long has Direct to Garment Printing been around?

Back in 1996 was when the first commercially available Direct to Garment Printer was first available. 1996! Pokemon was brand new and Jordan and the Bulls were in the middle of their second championship. It wasn’t an immediate industry revolution. The concept took a little bit to catch on, but it’s the future! Now you get to reap the rewards of high-quality, low-cost printing in smaller batches.

When should I use Direct to Garment Printing vs other processes?

Figuring out if Direct to Garment Printing is the right answer for you can be answered by knowing some of the finer details of DTG. Because all the printing comes from one machine and does not require multiple passes, there is little to no setup time. As soon as the print file comes through in the right format, the printing can begin. The prints are high quality. DTG is capable of more detailed designs than other styles. Just like your ink jet printer, Direct to Garment Printing has an unlimited color palette. Those details in combination with the low order minimums make Direct to Garment Printing a very attractive option. Keep in mind that if you want larger orders or to keep inventory on hand, there are bulk discount options in other printing styles we offer that might save you some. However, Direct to Garment printing can also offer discount options depending on the order size, type of garment on which we’re printing, amount of colors in the design, and some other factors.




Multiple Colors

There are no setup charges so from 1 color to thousands the price is the same.

Smaller Order Quantity

With no setup charges the price is very attractive on all quantities.

Large Range of Sizes

Image size adjustments are no problem. From a baby onesie to Adult 5XL the image will look proportionate.

Fine Lines or Details in Design

Fine lines/details are printed at 1200 DPI. This makes the detail in images excellent.

Cotton Garments

DTG best results are on 100% cotton. The higher the contton content the more vivid the image. Go with 50/50 for a vintage or distressed look.

Want for a Soft Feel

DTG is like tattooing a shirt. It colors the fibers of the shirt with water-based inks. This creates a softer more comfortable feel making it your Go to Shirt!


Shut up and take my money!

I know, right? How do you get started on that t-shirt/sweatshirt/shoes/mask design you’ve always wanted to print? Reach out to us by calling (847) 986-6212 or emailing us at jessie@beartrageous.com or contact us.