How ManyEasyWeed Colors Can I Layer?

When people who are new to the industry first see layered Easyweed on a shirt, their minds start racing. I’ve seen it at trade shows, they start thinking of all the designs and logos that they’ve come across and didn’t think they could achieve using a cuttable product. The first question is usually “how many colors can I layer”? At face value, this seems like a pretty simple question. Siser must have some formula for how many microns each layer is, so you multiply that times the number of colors and viola, you have your magic number. The truth is that the answer is much more complex. You might ask yourself these questions first:

1. Can you reduce the colors in the design and have it still look good?
2. Can the color of the shirt be incorporated in the design, eliminating an EasyWeed color?
3. How do you want the shirt to FEEL? The more layers, the heavier the design.
4. How experienced are you at modifying artwork to thin out areas of the design?

Let’s take a look at this Rubik’s Cube design.

EasyWeed Colors

6 EasyWeed Colors layered in a design

Right off the bat, we can see that there are 6 EasyWeed colors. Someone new to the industry or someone from a print background would probably start with a solid black background and layer the colors on top. For desktop printing purposes, this would be perfectly acceptable. But when layering physical materials is concerned, you want to have as few EasyWeed colors in layers as possible. This helps the design move with the shirt and keeps the shirt from feeling too heavy.
Let’s take a different approach to layering.

First off, what color is the shirt you’re using? If it’s one of the colors in the design, then we can eliminate that color FROM the design! Let’s say we’re putting this design on a white T-shirt. Now we don’t have to cut and apply the white material! We instantly took this from a 6 color to a 5 color design. What if we didn’t use a solid black shape as the background? What if the black was used as the FOREGROUND… or top color? The black cut piece would look like this:

EasyWeed Colors

5 EasyWeed Colors layered – but only 1 layer thick!

Having all the color squares cut from the black piece, now we can have essentially a 6 color design using only 5 colors… and the design is only 1 layer thick! Every color is making full contact with the shirt. This makes the design more durable and gives it a lighter weight, making it move better with the shirt and makes it wear better on the body. We’ll thicken up the lines on the black by a small amount so that if there’s any shrinkage in the colors, the black will still cover and the shirt won’t show through any gaps. This is all possible because of EasyWeed’s 1 Second Tack – you tack each color to the garment for 1 second and the final color for 10 seconds. This helps minimize shrinkage. If the garment shrinks, the registration will be off.
So by thinking about the design from a “layering EasyWeed colors” point of view beforehand, you can potentially save time, material, weight, and MONEY!

Interested in trying the file for yourself? Download an EPS and a CDR (Corel) file here. Have Fun!

By | 2017-02-27T11:55:54+00:00 October 19th, 2015|Heat Transfer Vinyl|10 Comments

About the Author:

Keith Allison is a 30 year veteran of the imprinted garment industry, having touched on all aspects of decorationincluding airbrushing, screen printing, heat printing and everything in between! Keith is Siser’s Marketing Manager and also produces all of the awesome Siser videos!

10 Comments

  1. Angela October 25, 2015 at 3:07 pm - Reply

    Can you layer the glitter HTV?

    • Keith Allison October 27, 2015 at 9:50 am - Reply

      Angela, the short answer is no, you can’t layer Glitter. This is true for any brand of glitter. Because of the rough surface, there isn’t enough surface area for the adhesive to properly adhere to the layer below it. I know some brands claim you can layer their product but it won’t last in the wash.

  2. Jamie November 16, 2015 at 6:42 pm - Reply

    Are you able to layer a matte vinyl then lay a glitter over top?

    • Keith Allison November 17, 2015 at 8:18 am - Reply

      Absolutely! We’ve done designs where the main part of the logo is EasyWeed and we put Glitter on top of it. As long as Glitter is the top material, you should be good to go!

  3. Tallie September 7, 2016 at 9:59 pm - Reply

    with this many layers would you still press for just a few seconds each layer?

    • Tallie September 7, 2016 at 10:02 pm - Reply

      For example when I layer 2 layers the 1st is just for a few seconds. Then the remainder of the press time is used once the second layer is applied. How would that concept work here?

      • Keith Allison September 8, 2016 at 8:27 am - Reply

        When pressing multiple colors, it’s not based on a 10 second time frame total. For example, if you have a 2 color design and you tack the first color for 2 seconds, the second color will still be pressed for 10 seconds, not 8. If you have a 5 color design, each color gets tacked for 1-2 seconds. On the last color, you press for the full 10 seconds. You want to make sure that all layers get bonded to the garment. Hope this helped!

  4. Ashley Garrard November 17, 2016 at 11:52 am - Reply

    Can you layer Extra Reflex with Easyweed? The base of my image is Extra Reflex, I am then putting black easyweed over top. Will this be okay?

    • Keith Allison November 17, 2016 at 3:50 pm - Reply

      We would recommend testing it in a small area… but if you can figure out a way to do the Extra Reflex on EasyWeed, that would be the way to go. You can layer just about anything on EasyWeed…

  5. Jerri Dyke May 26, 2017 at 10:13 am - Reply

    This is a great example of layering. I am still trying to figure out how to get the colors registered correctly onto the black without any registration marks? I know the answer is “eyeball” it, however when I have 10 4 color vinyl shirts to do this just doesn’t work!

    Suggestions on lining the colors up?

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