How to Layer Heat Transfer Vinyl
Put a fresh spin on your designs with multiple colors and finishes! Siser® HTV provides all kinds of options for you to layer, however not ALL heat transfer vinyl can be layered. If you want to check if your HTV can be layered, simply go to www.siserna.com, select the product from the drop down menu, and underneath the listed available colors it will say “Can be layered” or “Can not be layered.”
1. Close Cut Carriers
When trimming your cut design away from the sheet or roll of HTV it’s important to cut closely for a few reasons:
Saves as much material possible
Allows you to heat apply multiple transfers at one time
Cut back on production time by cutting your carriers closely. Overlapping HTV and carriers will adhere to each other instead of the garment, but if they’re trimmed then you can avoid overlapping and apply multiple colors at one time.
Reduces the risk of a carrier impression mark on the first layer of HTV
If you’re getting carrier marks consistently, check out tip #3. If they’re still an issue, lower your pressure.
2. Short Presses
You know how in baking something can be under done, just right, or baked to the point of burning? Well applying HTV is kind of like baking. You don’t want to over or under do it since peeling can be caused by both a too short press and too long. When pressing multiple layers its important to remember that the first layer will receive the additional heat of each press afterwards. Say you pressed a 4 color design for the recommended 15 seconds for each layer. The first layer would end up with a total pressing time of ONE MINUTE. That is one burnt cookie.
How about another example? This time showing the right way to press HTV! If you’re working with an EasyWeed product, you have the benefit of the 1 second tack. Any other HTV can be applied with the Glitter method.
Prevent Over Baking HTV
- Tan EasyWeed: 1 second tack, hot peel
- Sweet Mint EasyWeed Stretch: 1 second tack, hot peel
- Lilac EasyWeed Stretch: 1 second tack, hot peel
- Passion Pink EasyWeed Stretch: 1 second tack, hot peel
- Press everything for 10 seconds
- Gold Glitter: 1-5 second press, warm peel
- Mint Glitter: 1-5 second press, warm peel
- Lavender Glitter: 1-5 second press, warm peel
- Hot Pink Glitter: 1-5 second press, warm peel
- Press everything for 10 seconds
All presses should be done with a cover sheet of some kind. Check out tip #3 for the reason why!
Prevent Shrinking HTV
Over baking HTV leads to shrinking HTV! Short presses reduce the amount of shrinking from HTV and your garment. This is especially important for maintaining proper registration and alignment of your designs.
3. ALWAYS Use A Heat Transfer Cover Sheet
Siser offers non stick, reusable cover sheets, but if you don’t have one of those you can use parchment paper, multipurpose paper, or a pressing cloth like a clean piece of 100% cotton. The benefit of a cover sheet is that it
Protects Upper Platen
Previously applied heat transfer vinyl without a carrier sheet (like the first layer of a multi-color design) can melt or leave adhesive residue on the pressing platen. The residue on the platen may not be noticeable, but the next press without a cover sheet could adhere a random piece of gunk to the garment. A cover sheet keeps everything clean. Cover sheets also offer a layer of heat protection to prevent heat sensitive items from scorching.
Alleviates Carrier Marks
Remember those pesky carrier marks we talked about in tip #1? Well they’re easily dealt with if you use this trick. Press the HTV with the carrier for 1-5 seconds, peel the carrier according to the product, then place a cover sheet on top and press for the remaining time. Peeling the carrier early prevents it from embedding in the bottom layer, and pressing with the cover sheet evens out any marks.
4. Glitter is ONLY A Top Layer
Glitter is the star of the show, so it’s never on the bottom! It might also have something to do with durability…Ok fine, it’s all about durability. The textured surface of Glitter does not provide an applicable area for HTV, It can cause the material to peel off after washing. So if you want to use multiple kinds of HTV, ensure your design leaves Glitter only on top. This rule also applies to Holographic.
5. The Trick to Layering the Less Bulky Way
But what if you want a look that’s multicolored and all Glitter? You can do it! Just be mindful of your artwork and check out How to Layer Siser Glitter HTV for all the details. This method eliminates bulky layers, allowing the garment to move naturally with the body. So it’s not just a good trick for Glitter, but for all HTV layering! See how we used the same method with EasyWeed Stretch in this post.
So now that you know the tips and tricks for layering heat transfer vinyl, you might be wondering How Many EasyWeed Colors Can I Layer? The best HTV projects start with a great design and this post will help you start designing smarter!
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