T-Shirt Printing

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Does anyone know where one could have t-shirts printed at a reasonable fee in Hong Kong? I know of this website (http://www.unicotees.com) that charges HK$169 per t-shirt, but they do your prints on Giordanno tshirts (which retail at Giordanno for HK$100 for 3!! Nice profit @169 when you consider they are US$2.90 or less wholesale) which isn't what I'm looking for. There is of course all the other sites like Cafepress, Zazzle and so on but I'd like to deal with someone local.

As an afterthought, if anyone has any information on the graphic t-shirt business (or would like to buy some designs) they'd like to share...views, insight, perils, tips, anything... I'd very much appreciate it.

Thanks.

T-shirt printing

I've never had to print any T-shirts, but did need other printing jobs done a few years back. Apologies if you've heard all this before, but just in case ...

Then the big split was between digital printing (think fast laser printers), and print using films (I'm not sure what the technical name is!).

Digital printing is fast, and you can print any quantity, even one piece. Makes proof-checking of the finished article very easy.

With 'film' printing, you have to make the film before you can print anything. There's a cost and time associated with that. Then the printer will usually want to print a minimum of several hundred copies to make it worth their while. And if you find a mistake after you've get the printing back, any corrections mean throwing it all away and paying again for a secondset of films and print run.

At that time I found the digital quality ok, but the results from film were still much sharper. Digital was cheaper for small print runs, film was cheaper for large runs.

So I'm guessing the price you quote above is for someone printing a single T for you? It's something like the digital on-demand version of printing documents.

There are also T-shirt printers that will do something like the 'film' version, but will have a minimim order quantity. eg I tried one of the google ads on this page and arrived at brandhk. They have a minimum order quantity of 10, @ $70 per T. BUT there's a mention of a setup charge too.

So will you only be printing on-demand, or can you afford to keep small quantities of stock?

To work out which approach was better I used to ask something like:

If I want to print the attached design on a (specify type & quality) T-shirt, for the first order:
 - what will be the 'per-shirt' costs for quanity 1, 5, 10, 25?
 - are there any additional setup costs?

If I want to place a second order a month later for the same design on the same type of shirt:
 - what will be the 'per-shirt' costs for quanity 1, 5, 10, 25?
 - are there any additional setup costs?

Will there be any better prices for third and further orders?

If the setup costs are only charged once for the first order, that makes the 'film' approach cheaper on the later print runs. So if you have an idea of how many times you'll order a given design, the answers to the above questions will let you compare total actual costs from 'digital' or 'film' type of printers.

Sounds like you are starting a new business? Fingers crossed it turns out well.

MrB

T-shirt printing

Thanks for the write up MrB

All the above are certainly pertinent points and things to keep in mind. As for starting a new business, it's an idea I have running around my head but right now I'm just looking to make some demo Ts to see what people think of the designs. Business does sound good though, but considering the amount of graphic Ts available via the web and in general one wonders. Need to find something to fill my days and make use of my skills though.

Fred 

Tshirts

If you want once off things, you can go to a little stall in the lanes, I think it is the East one, there is a lady there who does it.  It's cheap and quick, you bring your own tshirts (I had a quick trip to Giodano first).  She takes your design which you email her and puts it onto a transfer and irons it on basically.  But coming to think of it, you could do the same thing yourself....  especially if it is just for demo purposes.

You can buy the t-shirt transfer sheets, you then need to take your image and flip it so it's mirror image, and then you print it onto this transfer paper, iron it on and bingo!

The only proviso is that it doesn't wash terribly well .. fades after a few times. 

Tshirts

Thanks for the heads up on the East lane lady but heat transfers are a no-no. I'm looking for screen printing.  Input much appreciated though. Thanks again.

SZ

Yeah 2 years ago my friend and I asked around on silk-screening also. Turns out that many designers who wanted to do demo rent a silk-screening bed and just DIY. Those Shenzhen bastards wanted minimum order 50 pcs at $120 per :P.. and all these limitations on where you can print. Can't overlap, can't cross over to the back side, can't punch holes..etc..

We ended up not doing anything and the project gone vapor.

SZ

It never ceases to amaze me as to how many project go "poof!" here in Hong Kong, one wonders how any business gets off the ground unless you have a huge war chest to begin with. Not only do we have to put with criminal rents but every time you want to make something the first thing those "Shenzhen bastards" ask is 'how many containers you want?'. I guess our friends in China are too used to dealing with mega corps and only go after the big bucks making it tougher and tougher as time goes by for the small start-up.

Ps. Anyone with a working time machine please contact me, I'd like to go back to the 60s thank you very much. ;P 

T-Shirt Survey

If you have time please consider taking a few minutes to fill in this 22 question survey. Thanks!

Inkjet T-shirt printing

Saw this advertised in a photo printing shop yesterday. Looks like they sell a service (HK$62+ per shirt), and also sell printers too.

Any idea what the quality and durability of this type of printing is like?

MrB

Inkjet T-shirt printing

Thanks for that link MrB.... definitely warrants further investigation. Looking at their website though I believe the process used is similar to a heat transfer. Have to check.

Thanks!

A quick thank you to everyone who took a few minutes to fill in the survey. Much appreciated.

Inkjet T-shirt printing

After a little investigation the t-shirt printing they do seems to be Direct To Garment (DTG) printing. Not heat transfer but still not the finish I'm looking for. Good to know they do it at a reasonable price, might be worth using that for a few demos. Thanks again for that link.

Some T-shirts...

Been a while since I first posted about t-shirt printing in Hong Kong...I decided to concentrate on designs rather than worry about the printing side. Have a look at my page.

I purchased 2 shirts from

I purchased 2 shirts from UnicoTees and the quality is perfect for me!

By the way, their shirts just cost HKD$99, not $169 now, I think it's not bad to give a try.

design your own t-shirt

you can buy from some online shops just like what you've mentioned but there's one which is singapore based therefore the shipping cost is very minimal and it's faster, try www.comboutique.asia, have this design your own t-shirt thing ;D

T shirt printing in Hong Kong (Island), cheap, local.

I am completely new to HK, actually came here as a tourist, but this page gave me the idea that  I may be able to make some money along the way. I have my designs, now I only need to have them printed onto a few T shirts so that I can upload & publish some photos as an experiment.

"fredl" has mentioned that there are numerous large (international) establishments that offer printing services, but he'd like to deal with someone local.

"gweipo" mentioned that for one-off printing, one can "go to a little stall in the lanes, I think it is the East one, there is a lady there who does it"

This sounds like what I want, except that it is a bit vague: I have no idea where the lanes are, leave alone the East one!

Can gweipo", if he is still around, or anyone else offer me more concrete directions? I am particularly interested in such amateurish, no-name services located on the HK Island.

Thanks in advance!