Why Sublimation Makes Sense for Any Print and Customization Business

Sublimation is a printing industry that has evolved over the last 30 years, starting as a ribbon printer and moving to a liquid, inkjet printer — initially designed for the photo gift industry for items like mugs, shirts, posters, and even magazine covers with your image on them. Now, it has a horizon of thousands of products for the ad specialty, promotional, and fundraiser marketplaces — with the ability to produce these items instantly!

Photo giftingsublimation101 phone case

One reason for adding sublimation stems from where I started over 25 years ago: The photo gifting business. Who doesn’t love their photo on a coffee mug, T-shirt, jewelry, and keychains? It’s a “fad” that will never go away as we see many large chain stores offer these items but outsource, which adds additional cost and shipping. Why wait when you can make them instantly? We all love instant gratification.

Sublimation for sign shops

Sublimation printing is excellent for sign shops. It’s fast, easy, and profitable. The marketplace is for every type of business owner, and you have clients that will need sublimation. Sign shops can produce instant outdoor/indoor multicolor sublimation signage in minutes by simply designing the image or logo and printing in 30 seconds, and pressing for 1 minute. This quick sign can bring high profits in no time. By adding sublimation, you can start offering your client’s ad specialty, promotional, and fundraiser items. Sign businesses can produce a banner for their holiday photo gift offerings and open up business to new clients who may not have signage needs.

Sublimation for embroidery shops

Like anything else in our industry, embroidery is a great skill, but not all businesses can afford embroidered shirts. The alternative is sublimated shirts, and yes, we can do light-colored polyester performance shirts (Remember: no white printing). This is also a great alternative for tote bags, baseball caps, and other wearables and accessories where the client can’t afford embroidery. You will now open your existing business to the marketplace for new gifting and promotion ideas in the market.

Sublimation for screen printing shops

Sublimation can complement a screen printing shop by taking care of any short-run, multicolor jobs. It’s also great for moisture-wicking shirts, and the garment options have expanded to sweatshirts, sweatpants, pet clothing, and more. Thus, giving you the expansion the promotional business market needs.

To further illustrate why sublimation is a great “next choice” when deciding on another service to offer, it has some real benefits. As I have been told, it’s a license to print money. You can produce thousands of items from ceramics, metals FRP plastic, 100% polyester performance materials, MDF hardboard, and more! Remember specialty ink, specialty paper, specialty products equals specialty profit. You are opening up your business to short runs, ad specialty, promotional items, and photo gifts done instantly.

Michael Kaminsky sublimation

Michael Kaminsky


Michael Kaminsky is the CFO at Sublimation101 in Branchburg, New Jersey. He has been with the company since June 2015 and practicing sublimation for over 25 years, and he has led training classes at THE NBM SHOW (now GRAPHICS PRO EXPO) since 2000.

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