How To Prepare Print Ready Files For DTF

Most of us have heard stories of custom items that

Knowing what print ready means for the job offers benefits worthwhile to the extra couple of minutes to make the changes. Having the file done right leaves no room for confusion between you and the manufacturer, which as a result saves time, allows for a higher quality product and makes sure that your final product is exactly as needed. This is why its important to know what specifications are required for the job and makes sure to follow when possible.

What can go wrong?

Common issues with an incorrect document can be pixelation or blurry images and missing or incorrect information. While digital images can be scaled by drastic proportions, when pulled too far, images that looked crisp and clear on a monitor end up pixelated or blurry. Depending on how files are made, colors could also shift or disappear within the artwork and text could have the incorrect fonts or become gibberish symbols.


If your images are not as crisp as you wanted them to be the first place to check is the image resolution. for best results, the recommended is 300dpi. While a lower resolution is accepted, the lower the value the fuzzier or more jagged the final may be. Most design programs will have the image resolution available on your workspace as well as the option to change it when saving or exporting. take this time to also check the file size and the dimension of your work. Make sure that it is at least the dimension you’d like to see the final otherwise the resolution would be negatively impacted.


DTF also has the addition of white ink that most forms of production don’t include. The white ink is required to maintain the flexibility and vibrancy of the print but what does this mean for you?

the inclusion of white in prints means that file types that do not support transparency such as JPEGs is not recommended.

How transparency effects logos on a t-shirt.
transparency and t-shirt design

Fonts and Text

Text is a popular companion to artwork whether it the name of a company or brand or inspirational messages but with the millions of typefaces to choose from, its impossible for anyone to have all of them. therefore if the files are documents such as a PDF, make sure the artwork is flattened or the text has been outlined.


CMYK colors should be used when possible so they stay true to your design. We are able to convert your files to the CMYK color space but it can result in washed out and muddled artwork.

There is also the consideration for the different kind of black to be used in the design. While the “K” in CMYK does refer to black, for sharper contrast and richer tone, k-100 may not be the best fit.


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