Here at Coastal we like to experiment from time to time with our products. This is how we found out that we can actually use the sublimation process on white glitter flake vinyl and end up with a pretty cool effect.
For my demo, I wanted to test the process on black and white 100% cotton fabric. The white fabric was more of a fun test, knowing that the fabric will be dyed a little bit temporarily (we have heard that it does wash out with time unlike polyester which is permanent). I knew the black would work much better because black can’t be dyed and the bleed area won’t show up at all (and that’s my goal).
• 1 black and 1 white 100% cotton sample shirt
• White glitter flake vinyl
• 2 images printed on sublimation paper
(The big image is sized to cover the whole area of the white shirt)
Cut and weed out your design out of the white glitter flake vinyl. Press the vinyl onto your material. I used 320 F for 5 seconds. Since I will be transferring an image for additional 30 seconds later on, the initial press should be just a few seconds enough for the vinyl to adhere.
Cut out your images to fit the design. For a black garment, all you need is the size of the vinyl design with some bleed area (extra printed area around the image to make alignment much easier and error-free). For the white garment, the fabric will be dyed as well, so size the image to be slightly bigger than the whole garment. I pressed the images for 45 seconds at 380 F. That seemed to produce the most vibrant transfer from various times tested at that temperature.
Note: The white fabric will fade and wash off little by little but the vinyl design will remain bright longer. This method is experimental only and the vinyl in itself was not designed for sublimation, it just happens to work with it. Not recommended for every day garment wear since due to the total pressing time of the vinyl, cracking and wear and tear may occur earlier. We have not tested the durability of it on T-shirts over time. Best used for décor.