Sublimation Printing Socks Processes
“What is sublimation?” Sublimation is the process of applying an image onto the surface of a blank product (we can sublimate socks, shirts, arm sleeves, sack-packs, & hats!) using heat and pressure. The sock sublimation blanks are white with black accents. We use “fancy” yarns that allow the image to transfer only to the white parts of the sock so that the black accents remain black from start to finish. Sounds scientific, huh? Well, our “sock-biologists” have mastered this process, and we have it down to an art!
(After you have approved your design CADs…) We print the custom socks design transfers on a giant printer.)
We prepared sublimation printing papers, front with custom patterns, and back is blank.
We use a sublimation sock jig to smooth the socks so that image makes a clean transfer onto the socks.
Step 4 & 5
We carefully align the sublimation socks blanks and transfer paper onto the press.
Unlike some of our competitors, we turn the edges between the front press and the back press. By turning the edges of each sock, we minimize the possibility of having a white line down either side of the finished, sublimated product. This creates a more seamless look for the final products, and well… it just looks better!
Because the image is printed and transferred to the sock’s surface, we can use any CMYK color to add any hi-res design to the hose. Have a super detailed logo? No problem with sublimation! Want a picture of your favorite running trail scenery on a sock? No problem! Anything you can think of can be printed and sublimated onto your custom socks.
One downside to sublimation is that because the design/image is applied to the outer surface of the sock, once stretched, the hose shows some grin-through. Of course, there is Option B that can solve this problem, 360-degree sublimation printing.