Our Print Processes
Direct Screen Printing:
This method is used to apply spot colours directly onto the mug by printing through a screen onto the rotating body of the mug. We use this method when:
- The design is simple
- The design is made up of solid spot colours
- The registration is not too tight
- The mug shape is suitable for a direct print
Screen printers can print thousands per day which makes this process one of the quickest and most cost effective.
Vector artwork would be needed, font preferably converted to outline to avoid risk of errors in font matching, and set to a recommend size minimum of 10pt.
With this process the design is printed through a screen onto specialised paper, which is then cover coated and is applied by hand to the ware. This process is slower and more labour intensive than direct screen printing, but allows the printing of finely detailed and tightly registered designs. The print is durable and lasts the lifetime of the mug.
Transfer printing is used:
- If the design is outside the direct print area or on a mug that cannot be printed direct.
- If the design has very tight registration, there is less movement than direct as it is printed onto a flat substrate.
- If the design includes tones or printing in full colour, as the screen mesh is a lot finer. Gradients and tones will still appear quite coarse due to being printed through the mesh.
- If individual names are required. Many names can be printed on a screen and then hand applied individually. This works particularly well if there is a generic part that can be printed as a direct print.
Dye Sublimation Printing:
Dye Sublimation printing uses organic colour dyes, opening up a much more diverse spectrum of colour and giving a bright and glossy appearance. This process lends itself to colourful designs and photographic images, which can be reproduced straight from a computer creating smooth gradients and tones.
Dye Sublimation is used:
- If the artwork is photographic or includes a large spectrum of colours, tones or gradients.
- If the design is one off or is a personalised order, the setup is a lot simpler so this process is more cost effective.
- If the artwork includes vivid colours.
High resolution jpg images can be used as well as vectors, text is recommended to be set as vector, if possible, to enable editing to aid printing.
Most of the mugs available in the Keramikos range can be printed digitally. Instead of films or screens, high quality images are used. These images are printed in CMYK, then cover coated and hand applied as a transfer. This is then fired into the glaze making a durable and lifelong print.
Digital printing is used when:
- The design is photographic or tonal/gradient based.
- Artwork is watercolour/hand drawn, and cannot be printed as dye sublimation.
- The product is made from bone china.
- The product is a quirky or unusual shape.