Dye-Sublimation is a printing method used on a variety of surfaces, such as polyester textiles and specially coated ceramics and metals.
The dye-sublimation process is fairly straightforward. There are three key factors: sublimation ink, heat, and pressure. The water-based ink is first printed on special heat-resistant sublimation transfer paper in reverse using large format inkjet printers. On textiles, it is then transferred onto polyester fabric in a heat press operating in high temperature (around 400 degrees Fahrenheit). The heat opens up the pores of fabric and the combination of high heat and pressure turns the dye from a solid state into a gas without becoming a liquid state. The dye in gas form permeates the fabric before solidifying in the fibres of the material when the fabric is removed from the heat press, and the pores also close as a result of a drop in temperature to seal the print.
If you are looking to print bold, vibrant, and durable graphics on items like sportswear, fashion apparel, mouse pads, snowboards, and other select hard surface items, sublimation may be the answer!