Getting Started With Sublimation
- Can I sublimate on anything? - The short answer is no. You need special sublimation blanks that are made specifically for sublimation. Sub blanks all have a special poly coating on them that basically "merges" with the ink to become one. There is a huge selection of sublimation blanks, just about anything you can think of. Cutting boards, phone cases, clothing, license plates, jewelry, and so much more. Just be sure you're buying blanks created for sublimation from reputable suppliers.
- Does clothing have to be 100% polyester? - It doesn't. It should be at least 50/50 but keep in mind the lower the polyester count, the more faded the image will appear after pressing. A shirt that's 100% polyester will look much brighter than a shirt that is 50/50. I personally don't use anything less than a 65/35 blend. There are times when the faded "grunge" look may be exactly what you're going for, in those cases the blends are the perfect shirts to use.
- Can I sublimate on cotton? - No, cotton can not be used for sublimation. There are "hacks" to get around this, but at the end of the day, you're still not sublimating on cotton. I don't recommend using any of the workarounds and products promoted. Stick to polyester and you can't go wrong.
- Where Can I Find Cheap Items To Practice On? - I'd suggest hitting up your local Dollar Tree, 5 Below, Wal-Mart, etc. You can find microfiber wash cloths, dish towels, pillowcases, etc. that are all 100% polyester and cheap to practice with. You could also visit your local fabric shop and grab a couple of yards of polyester fabric for fairly cheap.
- What Special Supplies Do I Need? - We've put a list of supplies needed below. All of the items we list have been used and tested by us, so we recommend them with confidence.