Heat Transfer vinyl is a product used to decorate sportswear, handbags, place mats, pillow cases, vendor tents and many other items. The classic example is printed t-shirt advertising. HTV, as it is know for short, comes in a variety of colors, thickness, etc., and have characteristics such as shine, stretch, glitter, glow, metallic and so on. In addition HTV is available with patterns, print your own design and recently, chalkboard, that can be written on with dry chalk and erased with a damp cloth.
A transfer starts with a computer aided design program that is capable of creating vector art. Once completed the design is sent to a vinyl cutter machine that will cut the vinyl design previously created.
Once the vinyl cutter completes it’s job, the vinyl then has to be weeded. Weeding is the process of removing the unwanted vinyl material from it’s carrier to reveal the intended artwork. From there the design is brought over to a heat press to be transferred to the material such as a t-shirt.
There are other technologies used to transfer images to materials such as sublimation and screen printing that shall not be discussed in this article.