Is there a minimum order?
Yes, 1 yd. (and we mean 1yd per type of fabric) for non-permanent printing. This type of process is for prototyping only; when you need to make up a product from fabric for a pre-line sale, photo-shoot or show room sample. This printed fabric cannot be washed. It is a relatively quick process so you can get to your buyers more often!
3yds (and we mean 3yds per type of fabric) for permanent printing. We are actually using textile specific inks and dyes that bind to specially treated fabrics for permanency in this process. The process of digital printing on fabric has a few phases so that the goods can then be washed or dry-cleaned as permanent product. This fabric can be used for selling on the retail level as well as for sales sampling. It is a more time consuming process than for non-permanent printing. This printing process is part science, part technology and part creativity all mixed together.
How long will it take? (Or) What is the turn around time?
It depends on the project scope. The more information you can give us the more accurate our turn around time is for you.
On average, the turn around time for non-permanent printing is 4-6 business days from the time that a project manager receives an accurate digital printing file. Accurate scheduling occurs after project scope is reviewed.
On average, the turn around time for permanent printing is 7-15 business days from the time that a project manager receives an accurate digital printing file. Accurate scheduling occurs after the project scope is reviewed by the project manager with the current production schedule that time.
How do I submit my designs?
Digital designs can be submitted on a CDROM or uploaded to our FTP site after working with a design coordinator. Together, you will review the basic project scope, parameters for submission and pricing. Most of the time a clients' request is bigger than just opening and printing a file, so we like to give you your very own design coordinator who will help you organize the project details we need. Remember, we can do as little or as much as needed, but we will charge you for our services and extensive knowledge in all aspects of print development. Our aim is to educate you so that the process is streamlined for both of us from the start.
Digital designs should be saved in PC- Tiff- Rgb format at 150-300 dpi. Flat color/indexed designs should be in indexed mode and tonal/photographic images as sRGB mode. If you don't know the difference, please save the file in the application you created it in as well so we can back track your work. You will need to speak with our design coordinators for complicated projects.
Do my designs need to be saved in a repeat?
This all depends. If you are using our custom printed fabric for samples or proto-types of product that are to be eventually rotary screen-printed, your textile images should be in repeat. Some of our clients print with us as their end result and design and print engineered panel pieces to make up product. If you are printing panel pieces, remember to enough seam allowance for fabric mobility and shrinkage calculation.
What fabric options do you carry?
A wide variety of nylons, cottons, polyesters and silks that have been specially pre-treated and tested to give us the best possible color gamut and reprint ability. Please see our fabric list.
What if you don't have the kind of fabric I want?
You can work with our Director of Operations on a Custom Client Treatment Program. This is not for the light hearted. To start, it requires a commitment from you to source 15-25 yds. of the fabric (pfp-white) that you want to custom test. You will be charged for R&D testing services, regardless of the outcome of the tests, at a rate of $ 1,000 for the initial treatment and testing services of the 25 yds. We will provide you with our report card and suggest if this is a good match for your specific project along with the feasibility in processing.
Later, if all works well, a minimum of 100yds for treatment is required for First2print to coordinate with our treatment suppliers. Some blended fabrics are just not feasible in the digital printing world because certain inks bind with certain fibers and some do not. For instance, a 50/50 poly/cotton will not digitally print with a good color outcome, regardless of what dyes are used digitally. We would steer you away from even testing this.
This R&D has already been done for all our inventoried “ready to go” fabrics, creating high standards for custom outcome. But if mass customization is what you need from your own goods, this is a great way for you to plan your product development ahead of time and a good way to control your custom printed products with your own textile grey goods. We need at least a 5-6 week lead-time for all this coordination.
Many major brands and retailers have been successful working with us using this program.
Do you offer eco-friendly fabric options?
Yes, we offer a variety of recycled polyesters and organic cottons.
Did you know? Digital fabric printing just by the nature of its on demand printing process, is a much more environmentally friendly print option then screen printing because there is minimal to NO waste. In addition, the acid and reactive dyes we print with at First2print meet OEKO-TEX standards. YIPPEEE!!!!!!
How wide are the fabrics?
They vary in width from 42" -58" wide.
Our maximum printing width is 58". If you need to make something wider, it is important to set the file up with printing overlap for sewing overlaped pieces together. Remember to create the overlap in strategic design locations to minimize the viewing of the sewing.
How do you make sure the colors you print match the colors I want?
Provide us with color standards, a paper print for reference, and a good clean digital design file. We custom match all colors upon request to the specified fabrics from your supplied color standards. A color standard can be a paper print out that you like, pantone chips, or color solutions custom lab dips. The more organized your paperwork and clearer the requests, the better we can be of service to you. It is important to know this is a difficult process and some limitations occur due to the type of file given, substrate chosen, and the ink gamut of the type of dyes used. We do our best to give you the closest color available with a custom color match that is within the gamut for digital fabric printing. Quality means everything to us.
Did you know? All our colorists had to pass the Munsell Color Test with “flying” colors to be employed here. How about you, do you want to take the test?
What if my file is too complicated and detailed to be indexed to fewer than 18 colors?
We would need to work with you concerning the ultimate usage of your fabric and determine which path to take for the digital design: indexed/color separated or photographic. For example, some designs can remain as photographic images if the end result of the product is digital permanent printing. We work on fine art replications for the museums and handle all digital designs as photographic imagery. Share with us the details of your printed project scope so we can determine if it needs to be color separated and custom color matched. If so, we can handle that too.
Are the printed fabrics machine washable?
Yes, if you order fabric that is permanently printed with reactive, acids or disperse dyes. When we review your project scope and files, we need to know what your end result is going to be for your custom printed fabric in order to determine the best choice of fabric and printing options for you.
How is your company different from companies like Spoonflower or other digital fabric printers?
First2print is a full service company that provides more than just cotton fabric printing: we provide a full understanding of textile print and product development. We also print on nylons, polyesters and silks, offering you a variety of different custom printing options with relationship to your supplier, whereby you speak and work with a design coordinator to fulfill project requests. Right now, our focus is on printing fabric with color accuracy from your request. As we see it, our requests require a further conversation to put the puzzle pieces together to execute and meet to your expectations. We have the knowledge to offer a personal touch, so we do.
What's the cost of printing my order?
Pricing ranges for printing and fabric between $65.00- $125.00 per yard, depending upon the type of fabric and process used. Color matching is a separate fee based upon the type of file we are working on: Index/spot color is $25.00/per color and photographic imagery is $75.00/hourly. Some high quality photographs can meet our standards by open and print only. Speak to your design coordinator about your project's end result.