Beyond Custom T-Shirts: Thinking of Expanding into Hard Goods?

Expand your business and creativity with custom printed hard goods

If you have a business that offers printing on-demand, you’ve probably had requests to personalize all types of items, from T-shirts to water bottles. Often businesses specialize in one kind of printing — soft goods or hard goods. If you are a garment printer looking to expand, it may be easier than you think. Here are just a handful of tips to grow your business and creativity with custom printed hard goods.


Whether you’re decorating an insulated cooler or a canvas beach tote, bags of all kinds are a great way to add to your product offering. Did you know screen-printed transfers, as well as CAD-CUT heat transfer vinyl, work great on bags? You just have to choose a product with the right adhesive for your bag. In addition, be sure to have a heat press pillow nearby for any pockets or zippers that may get in the way. Play around with unusual transfer placements, too, or eye-catching color gradients.


High-end tumblers, wine glasses, and mugs call for high-end transfers. You can apply dimensional emblems like these within seconds with just a little pressure. Add texture, color, and even a metallic finish with this transfer option. You can order pressure-sensitive options for most emblems that don’t require a heat press.


With the right heat press, you can personalize just about anything these days. Using a small platen, you can decorate shoes, can coolers, and a multitude of other popular accessories. Love this idea? A custom platen to fit multiple pieces at a time might be a good investment — complete both shoes at once or even eight koozies in one press.


Pleather is also known as fake leather or polyester leather. Don’t let this material scare you off! Pleather can withstand the heat, so decorate those planners, purses, and other pleather goodies. Heat transfer vinyl foils give embossed vibes while flocks and other textured materials add a luxurious feel.


Who doesn’t love a good swag bag? Promotional products help get names out there by providing a product people actually want to use. Make them eye-catching with printable sign vinyl or screen-printed transfers. A mug and hat press can come in handy with these items as well.

Nikki Reynolds

Nikki Reynolds

Nikki Reynolds is a visual merchandiser and small business owner with extensive experience in graphic design creation and heat printing.

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