Sublimation Coffee Mugs | What and How - Learning Center Sublimation Coffee Mugs | What and How - Learning Center
sublimation coffee mugs what and how

Sublimation Coffee Mugs | What and How

What is a Sublimation Coffee Mug, and How do I Customize it?

Sublimation coffee mugs are specialized mugs that are designed for printing and customizing. These are specialty coated mugs that come with a glazed ceramic surface ideal for retaining sublimation ink and prints.

So, a sublimation coffee mug is the best option if you want to create a promotional item or gift that is going to have good use and longevity for your customer. 

First - You will need the following things to customize your sublimation coffee mugs:

(try to finish this article before investigating these links – get the full picture first!)

Then You’ll Need to Choose the Graphics or Pictures

The first step is choosing the right graphics, pictures, or patterns for your coffee mug.

The good news is that you can put just about any image on a mug from a logo to a picture of your pets. Luckily, in addition to expensive professional software such as the Adobe Suite, there are online graphics application that will do fine, like Canva, etc. So you can choose from stock photos, get a graphic from your customer or create something on your own. 

TIP: Just make sure the image makes sense for a mug. Remember the dimensions of your mug along with the fact it will wrap around.

If you are not a graphic artist and don’t want to just reproduce a photo you can use a graphics service to go from any great idea to a sublimation ready piece of artwork. Like this one: http://coldesi-graphics.com.

Print the Image

Now, you can use the sublimation transfer paper to print your chosen graphics.

You can easily use high-quality full-size sublimation paper, which for you can be 8.5×11” or 11”x17”.

You can also buy sublimation papers that are pre-cut according to the different dimensions and mug sizes, such as 9, 11, and 15 ounces. See the link above.

For this purpose, you can use the sublimation printer and use the “mug sublimation graphics” setting for printing the image.

Ideally, professionals recommend using the “mirror image” option to ensure that you get what you see in the image. And you should not use more than 300 DPI resolution, as it will take more ink to print without improving the end result.

Trim the Sublimation Paper

Now, it is time to cut the paper. Some wholesale sublimation mugs come in different sizes, so you need to ensure that you cut the paper according to the required dimensions.

Trim the edges and make sure that you can easily wrap the paper around your mug without any issues.

Get Your Mug Press Ready to Print

You need to prepare your press machine before applying the image to your mug.

Heat it up to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Set the pressure to “medium-heavy” for up to six minutes. (be sure to follow the directions for your printer, paper and mug... this is just an example)

It will get the machine ready and accumulate enough heat for easily transferring the ink from sublimation paper to your coffee mug.

But check the latest instructions that come with the sublimation paper you ordered and TEST print the kind of mug you’re working with to make sure recommended settings are working right for you.

Place the Mug into the Mug Heat Press

Once your mug press machine is ready, it is time to print the image.

Wrap the pre-cut paper around your mug and hold it in place using heat-resistant tape. The tape will ensure that the paper stays in place throughout the process.

You should carefully place your coffee mug into the machine without wrinkling or damaging the paper. Start the sublimation process.

Remove the Mug

Lastly, remove the mug from the machine once the timer goes off.

Carefully remove the mug and the paper without damaging the integrity of the surface. Make sure to use heat-resistant oven mitts. THE MUG WILL BE HOT

Let the mug cool for an hour before using it.

Do I Need a Mug Press Machine?

When you are printing your favorite images on sublimation coffee mugs the best way to do it is with a mug press machine.

Here is a brief overview of the DK3 Digital Knight Mug Press

A mug press machine is used to print customized images and promotional items, quotes, graphics on mugs, and other glazed ceramic objects. It will work with almost any cylindrical cup to apply sublimation designs or when using DigitalHeat FX EZ Peel Hard Surface Paper

Why Do You Need It?

When printing images on wholesale sublimation mugs, you will need a heat press machine that will transfer the ink from sublimation paper to the surface of your mug.

Since you’ll be selling more than one at a time, normally, you’ll need consistent pressure and heat from one mug to the next. Otherwise you could end up with color variations or with some images just coming off when you peel.

How Does it Work?

There are heating elements in the mug press, right around where it comes into contact with the mug.

And you pre-heat for the same reason when you cook in an oven.

Once the press machine is heated, you can place the object inside it. The heat will slowly melt the sublimation ink and transfer it from the paper to your glazed ceramic object, such as a coffee mug, etc.

How to Make a Custom Coffee Mug?

Here are some useful steps to create a custom coffee mug:

  1. Prepare the image that you want to print on your custom coffee mug.
  2. Print the image on paper and cut the paper according to the dimensions of your chosen mug.
  3. Wrap the paper around your mug and use heat-resistant tape to keep it in place.
  4. Prepare the mug press machine and get it heated.
  5. Place the mug inside the machine and let it work its magic.
  6. Remove the mug and let it cool before using it.

What Can I Sell Sublimation Coffee Mugs for?

The answer to this question depends upon your targeted market, regional pricing limits, and various factors.

However, 11oz wholesale sublimation mugs are currently sold for $13 to $15, and 15oz mugs are sold for $15 to $18.

This price varies from place to place and also depends upon the printed image and covered area.

Where to Buy Sublimation Mug Blanks?

You can buy sublimation coffee mugs and blanks as well as mug presses and accesories from:

Colman and Company

The company offers hundreds of different size, color, and texture choices at your fingertips at an affordable price.

Are there sublimation blanks available near me?

If you live in the Tampa Bay area you can actually pick up sublimation blanks and supplies that you order online from Colman and Company (see map)!

And if you are in Florida and parts of Southern Georgia you can get your supplies and blanks as quickly as the NEXT DAY (consult the website for specifics)

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