Direct-to-Garment Printing

What is direct-to-garment printing and how does it work?

Direct-to-garment, or DTG, is a printing method that sprays the ink onto the garment. The ink then soaks into the fibers of the garment. It’s like printing on paper, but on clothing.

The main advantage of DTG is that it’s easy to print one-offs because there’s almost no setup time. Once your customer places an order for a single t-shirt on your store, Under The Tree automatically receives the order, prints your design on the t-shirt, and sends it directly to your customer under your label.

DTG printing with Under The Tree Printers requires no upfront investments, and each product is printed on-demand.

With DTG, you can still order in bulk if that’s what your business requires. A lot of print providers, including Unter The Tree, offer bulk discounts for DTG orders.

What type of designs work best with DTG?

DTG printers offer a lot of color options which means you can print detailed designs and photorealistic images with almost no color limitations. This is important for those businesses that want to try out various colors and designs.

The thing to avoid with DTG is transparencies. Elements that are less than 100% opaque don’t translate well in DTG printing—printers will attempt to make up the missing color by spreading the ink, causing the fabric to have a lot of gaps. That’s why it’s best to use solid colors or fake semi-transparency by halftoning.

Other than that, you can work with detailed designs and color patterns as much as you wish. For best results, we suggest creating graphics in the sRGB color profile—it matches DTG  printer color possibilities the best.

Is DTG printing eco-friendly?

DTG is a more sustainable fashion business model than screen printing. Mainly because printing one-offs allows businesses to avoid overproduction and textile waste. With 92 million tons of textile going to waste in the fashion industry each year, a business model like this is a game-changer.

When working with a third-party printing partner, products only get printed once they’ve already been bought by someone. 

Plus, a lot of DTG printer manufacturers create advanced tech that’s made with sustainability in mind.

What’s more, Under The Tree Printers use water-based vegan inks that they formulate, test, and produce in their own ink factories, maintaining the highest quality levels. The inks are non-hazardous, toxin-free, biodegradable, and contain no animal by-products.