How to Do Mug Printing

When you print mugs, you can choose from four basic methods. These methods are direct screen printing, Digital printing, and heat press printing. We will take a closer look at each method and how it works before discussing which one is best for you. There are some differences between them, though. Let’s take a look at some of the common ones first. Once you know which method you want to use, you can choose the perfect mug for your next event or party.

Transfer printing

If you want to print your designs on mugs, transfer printing can help. This method uses specialist paper and a coating to transfer the design to the mug. The process requires more time than screen printing, but can yield more detail and can be ideal for mugs of unusual shapes. Text can be printed inside the mug, while artwork can be placed on the base or handle. After applying the coating, the transfer paper can be peeled off and the design transferred to the mug.

Direct screen printing works by printing a picture directly on the rotating body of a mug. To process the order, the design must be created using vector graphics, which guarantee smooth edges and prevent pixilation. In this method, each colour in the design is separated into separate line colours and used as different screens in the printing process. The separate colour channels create vibrant, strong, and durable images. Unlike transfer printing, this method is especially useful for mugs with shiny glaze surfaces.

Digital printing

The first step of digital printing for mug printing is to select a print format. The most popular option is direct screen printing, which transfers an image directly onto the rotating mug’s body. This process begins with the client supplying a design. Vector graphics are preferred for the order process as they prevent pixilation. Next, the design is broken down into separate line colours and transferred to individual screens. These separate screen colours produce strong and bright colour images. This printing method is particularly effective on mugs that are coated with a shiny glaze.

Another popular option is transfer printing, which uses a special paper and coating and is hand-applied onto the mug. This process is slower than digital printing but offers finer details and is particularly suitable for unusual mug shapes. Besides, it can produce text and artwork on the mug’s interior. Digital printing can even print on the mug’s exterior. This type of printing is perfect for mugs with curved handles or a conical shape.

Direct screen printing

Direct screen printing on mugs is a cost-effective option for businesses on a tighter budget. It works well on earthenware promotional mugs that are dishwasher-safe and simple to design. While it is not a good option for complex designs, this method is a popular choice for mugs with conical or convex shapes, or when text or artwork is required on the inside of the mug.

With direct screen printing, an image is printed directly onto the rotating body of the mug. The process begins with a design provided by the client. To prevent pixilation, the design must be created in vector format. Once this is completed, the design is broken down into separate line colours that become different screens for the printing process. These colours give the final print a bright, strong appearance. The process is best suited to mugs that are made from earthenware, but if you want a more elaborate design, you can also choose digital screen printing.

Heat press printing

When it comes to mug printing, a heat press is one of the most popular methods. The process involves exposing the mug to abrasive materials under pressure, which chip away the exposed areas to reveal the white biscuit surface underneath. After that, the mug is placed into a kiln to finish the process. This ensures the exposed surface is non-porous and therefore, ideal for printing.

A mug heat press features a digital touchscreen, allowing you to set temperatures and see statistics for each individual print. Its nonstick surface makes it easy to clean. The machine has a temperature range of between 230 and 400 degrees, making it an ideal choice for mug printing. You can even buy a personal heat press machine that is just right for mugs. Its size and wattage rating are just right for this type of printing.

Litho printing

There are two ways to get a design printed on a mug. One is known as screen printing and involves transferring the image on a piece of paper. The second type is known as transfer printing. The difference between the two is the process involved. The former requires more time and can be a great choice for small-scale designs. It is also good for large-scale printing and has a higher starting cost.

This method is used when a small design on a mug is not large enough to be printed on a mug. This method involves applying the design to a specially-coated surface. The design is then treated like a water slide to adhere to the surface. This method is slower and more labour-intensive than screen printing but produces a permanent full-colour image. This method is ideal for mugs with delicate glaze surfaces and intricate designs.