Updated: Jan 14
When we first got into apparel decorating almost two years ago, we were nieve to products in the industry. We were unfamiliar with what shirts to use, how to create heat transfers and even how much pretreat to put on clothes. In fact, we even bought a USED Epson F2000 Direct-to Garment printer as an initial less risky investment.
Fast forward two years and we sure have learned a lot! As part of the used printer purchase package, we also received two heat presses, ink and boxes of RTP shirts. We were thankful to have gotten shirts, any shirts, not knowing anything about them. It actually seemed like a great deal because we didn't have a pretreat machine at the time and the whole appeal of RTP shirts is that they come pretreated for you, thus the name "Ready To Print."
Through a lot of trial and error, we discovered that not all shirts are the same. Not all shirts feel the same to the touch. Not all shirts are manufactured the same or use the same quality of material. How did the RTP shirts that we got stack up? Well, they were a little rougher feeling compared to other shirts and therefore not as comfortable or enjoyable to wear over the long haul. But more than that, if you look at the label closely as to where the shirts are manufactured, you will see the words "Made in Bangladesh". Why does this matter and why should you care? Because Bangladesh is number one in the world in regards to countries using child labor in garment factories. (You can find out more information here. )
That kind of information got our attention, and we quickly stopped buying and selling RTP shirts. For us, it was the right thing to do. No, there wasn't anything wrong with the shirts per se. They were very easy to use and for someone just starting out, like us, they did the job, but we made the choice to go a different direction. We decided to established a higher standard not only for ourselves, but also for our customers.
We want people to feel good about the clothes they get from us not just because they are super comfortable, but because they know that no sweatshops were used and no child labor was employed to make the shirts they enjoy wearing.