Brand Your T-Shirts with A Shirt Tag
Printing your own branded t-shirt tag labels inside your t-shirts is a great way to increase your brand awareness and future sales for your t-shirt business.
You created that awesome printed shirt. One last step is to brand your t-shirts with a tagless label or shirt tag.
(By the way, there are many terms for this printed tag including shirt tag, neck tag, neck label, tagless label, etc. We are referring to all the same thing here.)
Whether you have your own clothing line or sell custom printed apparel, adding branded shirt tags for your t-shirt business is worth the extra few seconds it takes.
Shirt tags add that extra touch to your shirts that increase the perceived value of your brand.
Is this important?
Think of the Nike swish or the Under Armour layered UA – when you see it, you have instant brand recognition.
It’s easy to create your own custom shirt tags with just a heat press and screen printed transfers.
Using screen printed transfers to label your shirts is super fast and easy if you are already using screen printed transfers to print your shirts. In this case, you can even add the shirt tags to existing transfer orders to print them at no extra cost to you.
Even if you are decorating your shirts with a different print method, we see a lot of t-shirt brands still print the inside neck labels using screen printed transfers because of how easy and fast it is.
T-shirt businesses utilize inside neck labels in two main ways:
- Some use it as an entire replacement for the existing shirt tag that comes with the shirt
- Others use it as a way to just add their business name or logo as a way to brand
If you’re going to print your own shirt tags in place of the label that comes with the shirt, you’ll need to make sure you include the necessary information that is needed on the tag.
If you are not removing the existing shirt tag, then you can print whatever you would like to include. Add your business name, logo website, etc., as a means of promotion.
By adding your own custom label to apparel, you are including a reminder to your customer of where they can go if they want more.
You can do this at almost no cost and very little added printing time.
What Should a Shirt Tag Include
When you remove the existing shirt tag to replace it with your own printed label, make sure that you include:
- the fiber content (fabric material)
- country of origin (where the t-shirt was made)
- and the company identification
These are all required by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). In fact, to back up a step, all clothing or apparel is required to have a label. So don’t remove the existing label if you aren’t planning on printing a replacement.
Fiber content refers to the apparel material.
For example: 100% cotton or 50% cotton/50% polyester.
You must include the generic fiber names along with the percentages of each.
List the fibers in order of the most content, to the least.
There is an exception to this. If a fiber is 5% or less, you can list it as “other fiber” if you choose (example: 96% polyester, 4% other fiber).
Or if there are multiple fibers that are 5% or less, you can add them together into one “other fibers” category (for example: 52% cotton, 40% polyester, 8% other fibers).
The exception to the exception is wool – even if wool is 5% or less, you must always state when wool is used.
You really don’t need to worry too much about this since all you need to do is replicate the information that is already on that existing tag. So don’t make this too complicated or over think it.
Country of Origin
Apparel must be labeled to identify where the apparel was manufactured or processed, also known as the country of origin.
Again, just like with the fiber content, just use the same country of origin that is already on the existing tag.
The country name must be written in English, but it is allowed to be abbreviated.
If only one country is involved in the manufacturing, the country can be listed without any words like “Made in”.
However, if more than one country is involved, they must be labeled with descriptions to accompany the process, such as:
Made in Sri Lanka,
finished in U.S.A.
Don’t label the countries in a way that causes confusion or deception.
So if you are printing on a shirt that was made in Nicaragua, you can’t change your tag to say “Made in USA” just because you are printing on it in the US.
“A label may say, “Made in U.S.A.” only if the product is made completely in the U.S. of materials that were made in the U.S.” – Federal Trade Commission
Identification of Manufacturer
All shirt tags must include the company name or registered identification number (RN) of the manufacturer, or of another company who is marketing or handling the product.
If you are replacing the tag with your own, then you may use your company name instead of the manufacturer name since you are now marketing or distributing the apparel.
However, you must list your company name as the legal name in which you do business as.
After the 3 items listed above, you can also add other information to your tags. The size is very common and important to add.
This one is fairly straight forward. Mark each shirt with the size of the garment. For example: small, medium, large, etc.
You can use abbreviations such as S, M, L, XXL, or 2XL to save space.
Care instructions, such as for laundering, is also very helpful to consumers.
You can add text and/or symbols to help identify how to take care of the apparel.
While this information is useful, it’s not required.
[Related Content: Laundry and Shirt Tag Designs Help Brand Your Shirts]
How Big Should a Shirt Tag Be
Your shirt tags can be any size you like.
Keep in mind with screen printed transfers, you’ll need to follow the guidelines for the printing specifications for each transfer type. The standard ink types require a minimum of .012″ for printed line areas, and a minimum of .04″ for non-printing “show-through” areas (example: inside of letters).
The shirt tag layouts are already set to a good size for printing when you choose one of those layouts.
We don’t recommend sizing them any smaller than the size they come in at.
Setting up Your Shirt Tag Order in Easy View®
Now we are ready to set up the art for your shirt tag order. We will be printing your shirt tags on an 11.5” x 14” sheet.
Decide if you will create your own tagless label art (submitted at www.TransferExpress.com/upload) or customize one of our shirt tag templates in Easy View, our online designer.
There are several label layout options that you can use in Easy View, using the “QTG” layouts.
To create simple label designs, just use one of these layouts and change the text and color.
To customize the designs even more, use the layouts as a starting point. Then add clip art, change fonts and colors, and modify text.
If you have custom clip art saved in your Easy View account, you can add your CCA to the design.
Keep the size of the space that you want to apply the transfer to in mind when creating your designs so you don’t make the tag too large.
Once you have your size, calculate out how many tags will fit on a sheet. We have a gang calculator tool to help you figure that out.
Plan how many of each shirt size you want on the sheet.
If you created your tag 1.75” x 1.6”, we know you will be able to fit 30 tags on a sheet.
Once you have created a layout that you like, duplicate it enough times to fill the full gang sheet. Remember to leave about a half an inch of space between each for cutting them apart.
Make each line a different size (S, M, L, XL) and add different material and care options if needed.
For best pricing, all your shirt sizes will be on one sheet. Each sheet might have 6 size small labels, 6 size medium labels, 6 size large labels and 6 size XL labels and 6 XXL shirt size to reach that 30 total on each sheet.
Now that you have set up 1 sheet based on your t-shirt sizes, figure out how many total sheets you will need. The minimum order is 5 sheets.
If you ordered 10 sheets, and we set up the sheet with 6 S, 6 M, 6 L, 6 XL and 6 XXL.
You will end up with 60 of each size label.
Then choose an ink color.
You can do all of one color or a color change for an additional fee. If you use black ink, that would work on all colors except black shirts. If you use grey that works on all colors except grey. You might order half in black ink and half in white ink.
Choose a transfer formula using our transfer selector tool
Do you want your sheet cut so you receive individual labels ready to apply? If so, choose the cutting service for .20 per image.
Now your shirt tag order is ready to submit!
Choosing a T-Shirt
Choosing the right t-shirt will help immensely when you go to apply your shirt tags.
Pick a t-shirt that has a tear-away tag.
It will make it super easy to remove the current garment tag without having to cut it out. You don’t have any of the tag remaining or sticking out.
The tear-away labels pull out very quick and easy.
Read the apparel descriptions to see which t-shirts have tear-away tags.
[Related Content: Rip-Away Tag Apparel Options]
How to Heat Apply Your Shirt Tag Labels
If you are placing the t-shirt label in the traditional spot, at the top, inside of the t-shirt, the easiest way to apply the transfer is to use the Hotronix® Cap Heat Press. Then you don’t have to turn all of your garments inside out.
Set your heat press to the required temperature for the type of transfer you are using. Pre-press the garment to remove moisture and wrinkles, and heat apply the transfer.
If you aren’t replacing the garment tag, there are several spots where you can place your custom label if you are only adding your company name and logo to add branding to your shirt.
The label can go on the inside or outside of the shirt, on the front or back. It can go on the bottom of the t-shirt, or even the sleeves. You can even place it on the inside of the t-shirt, close to the seam. Experiment with your shirt tag placement and see what works best for you.
Besides the Cap Press, you can now get the Tag Along™ HP quick change platen for your t-shirt heat press. You can print your t-shirt fronts and the inside shirt tag label at the same time with this specially designed heat press platen.
This allows you to cut your printing time in half.
If you are adding your shirt tags to your shirt transfer sheet, you are getting the tags for free. Now you can apply them without adding any extra applications to your labor.
Between the gang sheet and the Tag Along HP, you are printing shirt tag labels essentially for free. This platen will fit on any Hotronix 16×20 size press manufactured after 2014.
Make sure you have your shirt tags on hand and ready for any order that comes your way.
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