I’ve never been one with a lot of patience. It can take lots of trial and error to figure out how to sublimate stiff felt blanks. First and foremost, you need the right settings for your equipment and whatever materials you’re using.
I got into sublimation because I love the vibrant colors, and ability to customize SO MANY different things. When everything goes smoothly it is so darn exciting to see your finished piece.
However, it takes a lot of practice to get to that point. There are a few common issues people tend to run into, so I’m going to share my tips and tricks specifically on how to sublimate stiff felt.
In my previously mentioned tutorial I used soft felt. Soft felt sublimates just as wonderfully as stiff felt, but some people prefer the stiffer material. For my equipment I have found that 400 degrees and 60 seconds works well for both materials. However, stiff felt requires much less pressure than soft felt. You want firm pressure, but not so much that it squishes and deforms your blank.
After you have your time, temp, and pressure settings dialed in, one of the most common issue when sublimating stiff felt is that the sublimation transfer sticks when you take it off the heat press. This is SO frustrating!!
(Some of the links below are affiliate links for your convenience.)
One method I’ve been using to reduce the amount of transfer paper left on the blanks is: First remove the heat tape from the blanks, then sort of pull down and roll the transfer off the edge of a table. The blanks pop right off! It’s so much easier than trying to pull them off from the flat table.
(This cute pumpkin design is actually one of my own!)
If you still have paper stuck to the blank do not fear…and definitely do not throw away that blank! (Which was something I was doing for awhile.)
Grab yourself a soft cloth. I like these microfiber towels I get from Amazon.
Add some water to the cloth, then gently scrub. That’s it!
With minimal effort the leftover sublimation transfer paper comes right off.
The sublimation ink has already been infused into the polyester fibers of the felt so you don’t have to worry about scrubbing it away.
I wish I would’ve discovered this sooner as I was trashing so many thinking they were ruined. I hope this saves some you some time and frustration!
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HOW TO SUBLIMATE (& TROUBLESHOOT)
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