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Photo Textile Printing Mastery: Strategies for Scaling Your DTF Business

Photo Textile Printing to Scale Your DTF Business

Since its introduction in 2020, DTF (direct-to-film) printing has rapidly emerged as the preferred solution for garment printing and apparel customization, especially among small-to-medium business owners. Despite its unique advantages that allow business operators to increase profits, the intense competition prompts them to continually explore avenues to scale their printing enterprises. One segmented market that has been overlooked is photo textile printing.

Photo printing, a traditional yet enduringly popular method of preserving life’s important moments and memories, constitutes a significant portion of the personalized gift market. The demand for such services continues to grow annually, presenting a considerable untapped market potential. If you are contemplating expanding your product line or diversifying your DTF printing offerings, you have arrived at the right place. We will now explore some potential ways to elevate your business through photo textile printing.

What’s photo textile printing?

Photo textile printing refers to the process of printing images or photographs onto textiles or fabrics. This type of printing allows for the reproduction of detailed and colorful images on various textile materials, including clothing, home textiles, and accessories.

The process typically involves using specialized printing technologies, such as DTF (Direct-to-Film) printing, sublimation printing, or other digital printing methods. These technologies enable the application of intricate and vibrant designs, making photo textile printing a popular choice for creating unique, customized items with photographic or detailed graphic elements.

How could you scale your DTF printing business with photo textile printing?

While DTF printing was mainly used for garment printing, its unique advantages make it a perfect tool for photo textile printing. With its application extending beyond the apparel industry, DTF printing brings forth numerous possibilities and business opportunities for DTF or other digital printing business operators. Here are some product ideas that every business owner could leverage to scale their business.

  • Photo Blankets: Print cherished photos on soft blankets, offering a warm and sentimental gift option for various occasions.
  • Custom Pillowcases: Design pillowcases with photo prints, allowing customers to add a personal touch to their home decor.
  • Photo Canvas Prints: Extend your canvas printing services to include photo canvas prints, turning digital images into wall art.
  • Custom Photo Aprons: Print photos or designs on aprons, catering to customers who enjoy personalized kitchen accessories.
  • Personalized Bags and Totes: Offer custom bags and totes with photo prints, combining style and functionality for everyday use.
  • Photo-Printed Scarves: Create fashionable scarves featuring photo prints, allowing customers to showcase memories in a unique way.
  • Custom Pet Accessories: Appeal to pet lovers by offering personalized pet bandanas or blankets with their furry friend’s photo.
  • Photo-Printed Socks: Add a touch of fun to fashion with custom socks featuring photo prints, a unique and trendy accessory.
  • Personalized Towels: Offer bath or beach towels with photo prints, providing a practical yet sentimental gift option.
  • Custom Photo Flags: Create personalized flags with photo prints, suitable for events, celebrations, or outdoor decor.
  • Photo-Printed Headbands: Design headbands featuring photo prints, offering a stylish accessory that can be personalized.
  • Personalized Laptop Sleeves: Provide custom laptop sleeves with photo prints, combining protection with personalization.

If you have been in the customization business for a while, you might have noticed that many of these product ideas are executed using dye-sublimation printing technology. However, sublimation is limited to polyester-based fabrics, requiring customers to purchase fabrics designed specifically for sublimation from dedicated suppliers, thus restricting the widespread adoption of sublimation printing. With DTF, this limitation becomes obsolete, as DTF works on most fabrics available in the market, eliminating the need to spend extra money on specially designed fabrics. Furthermore, the convenience and advantages of DTF printing extend beyond fabric versatility.

DTF Printing Process
How does DTF printing work?

Why choose DTF for your photo textile printing business?

While there are a few other printing technologies available for the photo textile printing business, DTF stands out as one of the best solutions. Here are the reasons why we believe every photo textile printing business owner should consider using DTF over other printing techniques.

Fabric Versatility

As mentioned earlier, DTF works on almost all fabrics available in the market. This is one of the most significant reasons why DTF printing is considered the ultimate solution for textile printing. Here are some of the most common fabrics that you can print with the DTF technique:

  • Polyester: Polyester is a synthetic fabric with a wide range of applications including sportswear, casual wear, swimwear, outwear, including lining.
  • Denim: Denim has always been very popular especially for denim jackets, jeans and skirts.
  • Cotton: Cotton fabric is more comfortable than polyester thus are popular choice for clothing and household items, such as decorative lining, bedding, children’s clothing and different professional items.
  • Leather: DTF printing is also suitable for leather and PU leather including leather bags, belts, clothes and shoes.
  • Nylon: Nylon fabric cannot be dyed or printed in high temperature environment, so direct jet printing is mostly used for printing, and acid dyes are also used. The difficulty of acid dyes lies in the unstable color and poor color fastness after printing. These problems have existed for a long time. While this won’t be a big problem for DTF printing.
  • Blended fabric (50/50 blend): Blended fabrics are fabrics that are composed of two different materials. For digital textile printers, each material requires different types of inks, we must use inks that are suitable for the main materials that make up the fabric. This also means that the ink won’t stain another material, resulting in lighter colors and white exposure, so printing blended fabrics is best done with a DTF printer to ensure color consistency.

Photo-realistic Details

DTF printing is renowned for its vibrant colors and intricate details. Using PET films as design carriers ensures the retention of rich colors and fine details in the designs. When it comes to photo printing, DTF is undoubtedly one of the best printing techniques to employ. If you’re unsure, please take a moment to review the prints showcased by our dealer, DLRS, during the trade show.

@dlrskreativdesign #dtf #textilprint #maskiner #värmetransfer #dtfstation #dlrs ♬ Morning Energy – Tobu

Cost Effective

DTF printing is also regarded as one of the most cost-effective solutions for photo textile printing. In comparison to DTG, it saves up to 50% on white ink and supplies, requires no pre-treatment (which can be quite expensive), making it a significantly more affordable option. On the other hand, screen printing is an expensive and labor-intensive process, especially for print-on-demand orders like photo textile printing. If you are contemplating expanding your printing offerings, DTF printing is well worth your consideration.


When it comes to durability, DTF proves to be a lasting solution that can endure for years with proper maintenance and care. DTF prints are widely acclaimed for their excellent stretchability and washability, making them a reliable choice for garments. Notably, DTF prints exhibit remarkable resistance to peeling or cracking, ensuring that the vibrancy and integrity of the design remain intact over time.

In the context of personalized gifts laden with memories, customers typically have an expectation that such items withstand the test of time, retaining their freshness and vibrancy. DTF printing, with its enduring qualities and resistance to wear and tear, aligns perfectly with these expectations, delivering not just a product, but a lasting and cherished memento.

What’s the best DTF textile printing machine for your business?

Before delving into the various product options available in the market, the crucial question to address is understanding the specific requirements of your business. Establishing a clear roadmap for your business requirements allows you to identify all the factors that matter, rank them by importance, and then use this prioritized list to determine which product aligns with your needs. Essential factors to consider in this list include functions and features, daily productivity, print size, technical support, after-sale service, scalability, upgradability, ease of use, and price.

Once you have a comprehensive list of your business requirements, you can strategically evaluate DTF textile printing machines based on these criteria. Should you find yourself unsure about which DTF textile printing machine is best suited for your business, seeking advice from industry experts in your area can provide valuable insights.

DTF Station also offers a full range of DTF printing solutions, catering to diverse needs in the market. Whether you are a home business starter looking for an A4 solution or an industrial player in need of a 60CM solution, DTF Station can assist in finding the right DTF printing solution for your specific business requirements.


Prestige A4

Prestige R2

Prestige R2 Pro

Prestige L2

Prestige XL2

PhotoPrestige R2 Pro DTF Printer
Max. Printing Width21cm30cm30cm45cm(18″) 60cm(24″)
Printing SpeedA4(1140/5min)6Pass 2.5-3.5 sqm/h
8Pass 1.5-2 sqm/h
10 Pass 2.5-3 sqm/h
12 Pass 1.5- 2 sqm/h
6Pass 5.5 sqm/h
8Pass 4.5 sqm/h
6Pass 9.5 sqm/h
8Pass 7.5 sqm/h
Net Weight (kg)15kg40kg56.5kg139kg 154kg
Main Board & Printer HeadEPSON/
Hosonsoft /
Dual EPSON F1080
Hosonsoft /
Dual EPSON i1600
Hosonsoft /
Dual Epson I3200
Hosonsoft /
Dual Epson I3200
Daily Output70 pcs
(7.87″ x 11.81″ design size, 8 hrs per day)
Around 160pcs
(Based on 12”x14” design size, 8 hours per day)
Around 160pcs
(Based on 12”x14” design size, 8 hours per day)
6pass: 400pcs / 8pass: 300pcs
(Based on 12”x14” design size, 8 hours per day)
6pass: 650pcs / 8pass: 500pcs
(Based on 12”x14” design size, 8 hours per day)
SizePrinter Size
Packing Size
Printer Size
Packing Size
Printer Size
Packing Size
Printer Size
Packing Size
Printer Size
Packing Size


Understanding the nuances of Photo Textile Printing Mastery is akin to deciphering a well-crafted blueprint for business expansion. As you navigate the intricacies of scaling your DTF business through photo textile printing, remember that informed decisions are the keystones of success. DTF emerges as the optimal choice, offering a seamless blend of technology and creativity. By choosing DTF for your photo textile printing business, you’re not just selecting a method; you’re opting for efficiency, durability, and versatility.


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