Apr 27, 2016

The 4-1-1 on T-Shirts

When it comes to T-shirts, I’ve been an “eggs-pert” since I hatched. We know that every company has different needs for their branded tees-- each company has their own story to tell and their own reason for telling it. There is no reason why your t-shirts shouldn’t help you tell that story! I’m about to lay down some heavy knowledge, so grab a nice iced cold coffee, chill out, and pick up a thing or two for your next t-shirt need…

These are typically heavier weight shirts, ranging between 5.5 to 6 ounces and are made with thicker yarns, typically (24 singles count yarn or lower) in a carded cotton. The cut is generous, making it a popular choice among people who do not feel comfortable in form-fitted garments. Some of the brands that make up the basic category are Hanes, Delta, Gildan, Fruit of the Loom, Anvil and Alstyle. These usual suspects come from huge mills that manufacture major volumes of basics in a huge array of color options. Although we sometimes recommend the higher-end tees, there will always be a place for basics, as they are staples. And the price is right!

As the t-shirt landscape is always changing, we had to come up with a name that classifies this newer trend. Not quite a basic and not quite a fashion item, these styles are a nice mix of the two, making them versatile! Many of the same brands mentioned above in the basics category make a lighter-weight option that have a few fashion elements in the fabric treatment and fit. These are a great mix of quality and value.

Fashion-centric apparel offers more form-fitting cuts, typically mirroring the hottest retail trends. Made from finer yarns (defined by 30 singles count or higher) and washed with enzymes and other chemicals, the result is a thinner, softer garment—soft as a new-born chick! Many people have the misconception that a thinner tee means lower quality, but this is not the case.  If you look at today’s retailers, they are offering more silky-soft garments that drape well on the body. These garments look great with distressed imprints, keeping the ink hand similar to the garment hand. Some of the fashion brands that we offer include American Apparel, Alternative Apparel, Next Level and many more!

These days, some of the world’s largest brands like Nike, Under Armour, Adidas and New Balance have entered the corporate market.  Their offerings come with a steeper price tag, but they are using some of the best fabrics out there.  Many of the performance offerings are made with polyester and require the use of polyblocker inks when printing. These inks stretch with the garment and ultimately keep the imprint looking great for the long haul. The Icebox has extensive experience in printing on all different fabrications.  

No matter what your t-shirt choice, many manufacturers now provide tear away label options in all of the above categories. The Icebox can tear out the manufacturers label and add a private label screen printed right into the neck of garment—making it YOUR brand.  How is that for cool?

Stay tuned for our next blog on the coolest ways to decorate tees. Because screenprinting is only the beginning…

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