Digital fabric printing is the most widely used technology to create textile designs that are printed directly onto fabrics. In fact, it’s now the most popular means of printing textiles by manufacturers and hobbyists alike. There are many different methods or types of digital fabric printing, each with its own set of pros and cons. One of the main things you’ll want to consider before choosing a type is whether you want to use it for business purposes or just as a personal hobby. Each method has its own advantages and disadvantages; however, some are better suited for commercial use than others. Keep reading to learn more about the various digital fabric printing technologies that are currently available.

What is digital fabric printing?

Digital fabric printing is the process of creating printed fabric designs through various computer software programs. It’s also known as Computer Assisted Design (CAD) printing, wherein designers create textile patterns on their computers and then send the design to a commercial printer. The printer then transfers the image onto the fabric of your choice, where the fabric is dyed or printed with reactive water-soluble ink. This whole process is known as digital textile printing or direct-to-fabric printing. Digital fabric printing is the most popular fabric printing method currently available. The technology has evolved over the years, becoming more affordable and accessible for commercial and at-home use. Digital fabric printing allows designers to create virtually any design imaginable, including realistic images and photos, intricate designs, and even personalized graphics. You can also use digital fabric printing to create textile designs that are eco-friendly by using water-soluble inks.

Direct to Fabric Printing (DFP)

Direct-to-fabric printing is one of the oldest methods of digital fabric printing. In this method, a printer sprays ink directly onto fabrics. All you have to do is place your fabric on the ink-jet print table and press a “start” button. The printer will then apply the ink directly onto your fabric in a particular pattern or design that you selected while designing the image on your computer. Direct to fabric printing is also known as transfer printing, direct to garment (DTG) printing, and screen printing on fabric. This is one of the best ways to create custom T-shirts, sports uniforms, bags, and other garments at a low price. When you print directly onto fabrics, you’re able to print on items without the use of special settings or inks. You can choose from a variety of fabrics like cotton, polyester, and nylon, among others. The only downside to this method is that you have no control over where the ink will land on your fabric. This can cause problems when you’re creating designs that need to look perfect.

Computer-to-Fabric (CTF) printing

Computer-to-Fabric printing is a newer technology that combines the best of both direct-to-fabric printing and computer-to-surface printing. The CTF printing method is a two-step process, where the first step is similar to DFP. In the first step, you create your design on a computer and then print the image onto a fabric-like paper (CTF paper) using a special printer. In the second step, you place the image printed on CTF paper on the fabric and then transfer the image from the CTF paper to the fabric using a special press or iron. This method is fairly similar to DFP, except for one important difference. DFP uses a chemical ink-based printing technique, whereas CTF uses a water-based printing method. CTF uses a water-soluble ink that is eco-friendly and safe for fabrics.

Digital Applied

If you’re looking for a fabric printing technique that doesn’t require large investments, then consider digital applied printing. In this method, an ink-jet print head applies small amounts of liquid dye to the fabric. You can use digital applied printing to print on fabrics such as cotton and polyester. However, the quality of your print is determined by the type of fabric you’re printing on. You have to make sure that the textile has the proper surface structure for the ink to stick to. Fabrics such as cotton, polyester, and nylon have the right structure for printing, whereas silk and wool don’t. Digital applied printing works best for basic designs like logos or simple photographs that don’t have to be extremely high quality.

Digital Dye Sublimation Print Technology

If you’re looking for a flexible fabric printing technique that allows you to print on almost any fabric, then dye sublimation printing may be the best option. This technique involves applying a layer of ink to the back of the fabric first and then transferring the image to the front of the fabric. There are two ways to do this, either by printing the fabric first and then transferring the image to the fabric or by printing the fabric and then transferring the image to the fabric. The first method is known as “offline sublimation printing,” and the second is known as “online sublimation printing.” Both methods use a digital printer and are usually done in a commercial setting. Fabrics such as cotton, polyester, nylon, and spandex can be used with this technique. You can use dye sublimation printing to create custom T-shirts, bags, pillowcases, and more.


Fabric printing is a booming business that’s expected to increase by more than 10% by 2022. There are many different types of digital fabric printing, each with its own set of pros and cons. Direct to fabric printing is one of the earliest methods, while dye sublimation printing is one of the newest methods available. When choosing a type, you should take into account the cost, ease of use, and durability of the fabric. You might also want to consider whether or not the fabric printing method is eco-friendly, as well as what fabrics can be printed on with each method. With so many options at your disposal, it’s easy to see why digital fabric printing is the most popular textile printing method available.


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