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Artwork Guidelines

USING THE ONLINE DESIGN TOOL

Upload your digital artwork file at actual print size as a:

vector SVG, EPS or PDF

or

raster 300dpi (dots per inch) PNG or JPG

 

Direct-to-Garment Printing

1. FILE TYPE

We can work with lots of file types, but PNG files with a transparent background are our preference for DTG printing.  You can also upload a JPG, PDF, EPS or SVG file using our online design tool or send us an AI or PSD file but we may have to convert these files to make them print ready. 

  

2. FILE RESOLUTION

For best results, files should be sent at actual print size and either 300dpi or vectorised. Please Note: In most cases you cannot simply "resize" an existing small file to increase it's size. You need to find the original larger file or recreate the artwork at the appropriate size.  We cannot take responsibility for poor print quality if the file is of poor quality.  

If the size and quality of the image is not good enough for the size of the print your require, we may have to recreate the image. Depending on the complexity of the image, this may incur an additional design work fee.  If this is necessary, we will contact you first to inform you of any extra costs and confirm that you are happy to go ahead.

 

3. DESIGN CHOICE

Direct-to-Garment (DTG) printing works well for solid colours, gradients and full colour images.  DTG machines are basically a larger version of your home inkjet printer and work in a similar way.  DTG printing does not support metallic or glow/neon inks.

 

4. ARTWORK SIZE

Direct-to-Garment prints may be up to 35x40cm in size.  Please send your artwork at the required print size to avoid confusion. 

 

5. POSITION

We can print on any area of the garment as long as it can be laid flat.  DTG printing is more forgiving than screen printing though and it may be possible to print over kangaroo pockets on hoodies and right up to seams or onto hems.  This type of edge-to-edge printing takes longer and costs more.  If you require specific positioning that's unavailable via our Online Design Tool, it may still be possible.  Please email or phone to ask.

 

6. COLOURS

Everyone’s monitors are different, which means that there are going to be small differences in the colours that you see on your screen and what our team is looking at.  In the same way there is going to be a variation in what you see on screen to the actual garment or print colour.  For this reason please allow for some colour variation in both the prints and garments. 

 

7. DETAIL

The DTG printers are precise and can reproduce thin lines, and fine gradients.  However, it will also print any imperfections in the artwork supplied, eg noise, floating pixels etc so carefully check your artwork beforehand.  

If your vector artwork contains text, please ensure that the text is converted to outlines.

 

Screen Printing

1. FILE TYPE 

If you order online and use the Online Design Tool, please upload your digital artwork file as a vector SVG, EPS or PDF or 300dpi PNG or JPG (actual print size or larger).  It is also possible to email your design to info@idressmyself.co.uk.  We can also accept AI (Illustrator) or PSD (Photoshop) files by email.

If the file is larger than 20 MB, please email us a zip file or send via WeTransfer (or similar).

 

2. FILE RESOLUTION

For best results, files should be sent at actual print size and either 300dpi or vectorised. Please Note: In most cases you cannot simply "resize" an existing small file to increase it's size. You need to find the original larger file or recreate the artwork at the appropriate size.  We cannot take responsibility for poor print quality if the file is of poor quality.  

If the size and quality of the image is not good enough for the size of the print your require, we may have to recreate the image. Depending on the complexity of the image, this may incur an additional design work fee. But don’t worry – if this is necessary we will contact you first to inform you of any extra costs and confirm that you are happy to go ahead with the printing.

 

3. DESIGN CHOICE

When choosing your design try to avoid photographic images and illustrations with lots of lines and/or shading. Colour gradients are difficult to exactly reproduce since the artwork must be changed into half-tone dots of different sizes. Bold images with blocks of colour tend to give the best results. We can print 6-7 colours onto garments. Bear in mind that the more colours in the design, the more it will cost.  Screen printing is an analogue process so please don’t expect your design to be perfectly reproduced after it’s developed onto a screen and printed onto fabric. 

 

4. SIZE

Please supply your artwork at the print size you require. Standard print size can be up to 45 cm x 35cm in portrait for adult T-shirts.  Tea towel designs can be up to 57 x 45cm and tote bag designs can be up to 28 x 30cm (portrait).  Label and short-sleeve prints can be up to 8 x 8cm.  

 

5. POSITION

For screen printing we prepare a PDF proof for every order, for your to check and confirm artwork size and positioning before we go to print.  If you have specific positioning requirements, please provide this information.  Ideally we would like to know the distance from the neckline (the top edge of the collar, on the centre line, next to the neck) to the topmost element of the design, in cm on a medium T-shirt.  We are likely to adjust this positioning slightly (e.g. increase it on the largest garments and decrease it on the smallest garments) in order to maintain relative positioning.  If it is a left breast design, it's also useful to know the distance from centreline to the edge of the artwork on a medium T-shirt.  Again, this may be adjusted, as appropriate.

If you require a print position that's unavailable via our Online Design Tool, it may still be possible.  Please email or phone to ask.

 

5. DETAIL

Lines must be drawn at a minimum of approximately 1 point for dark ink on light-coloured tees and 1.5 points for white or coloured ink on dark-coloured tees. (Thinner lines cannot be reliably reproduced.) If you’re not sure please email the artwork to us for advice.  If your vector artwork contains text, please ensure that the text is converted to outlines.

 

6. COLOURS

Please specify your colour in one of the following ways:

  • Supply a Pantone Matching System (PMS) reference number
  • Email your design in colour but remember that colours/shades do look different from screen to screen so this is not as precise. We will convert this to a the closest matching PMS code.
  • Send a hard copy of (something in) the colour, in the post. We will convert this to a the closest matching PMS code.

 

If your design is more than one colour and you can carry out the colour separation yourself, please layer up the artwork file. We are happy to carry out simple colour separation for free but, for complex colour separation we may charge you. Don’t worry, if this is necessary, we’ll contact you first to confirm that you’re happy to go ahead.

EMBROIDERY

1. FILE TYPE

We recommend uploading your artwork to the website as a PDF or PNG file. The website also accepts SVG, EPS or JPG files.  We are happy to accept higher resolution artwork and AI or PSD files via email to info@idressmyself.co.uk

 

2. FILE RESOLUTION

  1. Recommend: 300 dpi
  2. Acceptable: 150 dpi
  3. Not acceptable: less than 150 dpi

 

For best results, files should be sent at actual print size and either 300dpi or vectorised.  Please Note: In most cases you cannot simply "resize" an

existing small file to increase it's size.  You need to find the original larger file or recreate the artwork at the appropriate size.  We cannot take responsibility for poor print quality if the file is of poor quality.  

If the size and quality of the image is not good enough for the size of the print your require, we may have to recreate the image. Depending on the complexity of the image, this may incur an additional design work fee. But don’t worry – if this is necessary we will contact you first to inform you of any extra costs and confirm that you are happy to go ahead with the printing.

 

3. EMBROIDERY SIZE

Files must be provided at the size you need embroidered. If you need 5x5cm embroidery, your artwork should also be set to 5x5cm.  If you are unsure what size to embroider your artwork, we recommend measuring a real t shirt to see how different sizes look.

For custom T-shirts, the maximum embroidery size is a circle of 11cm diameter.  Sweaters and hoodies with a heavier fabric can take larger embroidery up to 26cm diameter.  Embroidery on caps can be up to 5.5cm x 12cm (landscape), on the front.  Beanie embroidery sizes may be more style specific.  Garment type and positioning may affect the embroidery size.

 

4. DETAIL

Embroidery can be used to create detailed shapes, text, and artwork. However, because custom embroidery creates your artwork by stitching threads, there are physical limits to how intricate details can be within your artwork. The smallest a single stitch can be is 2mm. This means that the smallest level of detail within your artwork must be at least 2mm. If your artwork contains details smaller than 2mm, we will need to adjust your file to ensure your artwork can be created as embroidery and this may alter the look of your embroidery.

 

5. FONTS & TEXT

Remember, your text and fonts will be created out of thread so you want to take precautions to ensure your text is legible.  Letter height should be an absolute minimum of 3.5 to 4 mm, and ideally 5 - 6 mm.

Consider your letter spacing, or tracking, to ensure your text is legible.  Generally speaking, the best fonts for embroidery are cursive letters where each letter is connected in script. The thread will continue between each letter and be more legible. The next best fonts are san-serif fonts because there are less pieces to each letter and are more easily legible. Serif fonts are not recommended at small scales, but if you intend to use one, we recommend adding additional space between each letter for visibility and clarity around each letter.

 

6. COLOURS

We offer a variety of thread colors to achieve the most accurate colour representation for embroidery.  When you upload your artwork and select embroidery, the website will automatically detect and display colours in your artwork that match our stock thread colours.  If your art requires specific thread colors, please email the specifications to info@idressmyself.co.uk to request a quote for custom embroidery colours.

Disclaimer: When images are embroidered the colours may not match exactly what you see on your screen. Unfortunately, there are differences between how colours are rendered on a computer or phone screen.

Orders placed online can contain up to 5 thread colours.  If your artwork requires more than 5 colours you can request an estimate by emailing info@idressmyself.co.uk

 

7. PULLING & PUCKERING

Since embroidery is made from thread & stitching your artwork into a garment, it is possible that your artwork may have some minimal puckering or pulling due to the stitches pulling and distorting the fabric.  For this reason, heavier weight T-shirts (such as the Stanley Sparker at 220gsm) are recommended for embroidery.  Lightweight fabrics are more likely to show puckering or pulling and are not suitable for embroidery unless it's a low number of stitches in e.g. a line drawing.  We will apply a backing material to your design, which should prevent or minimize puckering and to get you the best embroidery possible. 

 

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