Take Your Heat Press on the Road

Start heat printing at events this summer

With events opening back up across the country, it may be time to take your heat press on the road. As a T-shirt vendor at an event, you’ll not only find new customers with common interests, you can also earn some extra money.

If you’re looking for new customers, consider your favorite hobbies as a place to start. Do you love to fish or go camping? What about horseback riding? Classic or antique car shows? With summer here, you’ll find outdoor events that specialize in just about every hobby or interest. If you own a heat press, you can travel to these events and sell shirts at the same time.

Event marketing checklist

If you’ve ever considered bringing your heat press to an event, summer is a great time to give it a try. There are a few things you will have to do first.

First, you need to find an event. Some events charge vendors, some don’t. You will probably have to sign a contract, so read the fine print. You may even have to give a portion of your sales to the organizer. It all depends on the specific event.

Second, you need to have a booth or table setup. Transfer Express recently published a free ebook on how to take your business on the road. It details everything from finding events to offering the right blanks and having the proper signage. You also want to consider booth location at the event — make sure there will be good foot traffic near your booth and sun protection if outdoors.

You also need to make sure you have electricity. Some venues charge extra for this. Remember, your heat press needs a dedicated 20 amp circuit for proper heating. There will also be safety rules and other regulations. Make sure you know what you’re getting into before leaping into mobile printing.

That said, we have many customers who successfully and profitably take their business on the road. Some have vans or trailers outfitted to make it easy.

Bring transfers

People enjoy putting together a custom shirt at an event. To start, you want to have examples of shirts people can purchase. Also, make sure to bring transfers or pre-printed shirts and allow customers to add names or other transfer elements. You can charge for each print.


Start mobile heat printing today

Even though it’s already June, there are still thousands of events out there that need T-shirt vendors. And if you find an event that already has a vendor, attend and take notes. You’ll quickly discover what you could be doing better.

Selling at events is a learning experience. Preparation is key. Make sure you research your audience, your venue, and, most importantly, your costs. With the right combination of shirts and transfers, you can be a successful vendor and have a lot of fun at the same time.

Ted Stahl

Ted Stahl


Ted Stahl is the executive chairman of the board of GroupeSTAHL, a family-owned, international group of companies dedicated to providing alternatives in garment decoration, specializing in heat printing methods. GroupeSTAHL is a manufacturer as well as a provider of garment decoration services. Ted is a well-known industry veteran with more than 40 years of experience in all aspects of apparel graphics, from manufacturing and marketing to product design and retail operations.

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