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HTV Beginner's Guide

HTV Beginner's Guide


First time doing an HTV project? Don't know how to use or what to use for your project? Let us help you with your problem! After reading this, you will be ready for anything when doing your first ever HTV project.


What is Heat Transfer Vinyl?

HTV is the most common used term for Heat Transfer Vinyls. This type of vinyl is different from adhesive vinyl because it doesn't have a sticky side. It is applied on a substrate using heat. HTV is most commonly used on fabrics like shirts, pillow cases, bags and etc. This type of vinyl has its’ own carrier sheet meaning you don't need to use Transfer tapes when you are dealing with HTV. It comes in different colors and different types you can choose from.


 Heat Transfer Vinyl


Types of HTV

Heat Transfer Vinyl comes in different types and brands. One of the most popular brands is, Siser. We personally recommend using Siser, especially when you are a beginner as it is super easy to work with.


Siser comes with different types of HTV, such as; Easyweed, this type of HTV can be applied at a lower temperature not like the other competitor material. Meaning, you can use this in a substrate that has a high percentage of polyester. Materials with a high percentage of polyester tend to burn easier compared to other materials. Easyweed can also be peeled hot or cold so you don't have to wait for a long time to take the backing off. It is also relatively thinner than the other types of HTV, which makes it perfect for layering projects.




Another type of HTV from Siser is the Siser Glitter. This HTV has a perfect sparkle and bling for your next design! It is available in over 30 vibrant colors. Siser Glitter doesn't shed any glitter flakes. And it is completely safe for kids!


 siser glitter


Siser carries many different types of HTV such as Siser Strech, Glow in the dark, Holographic, Reflective, HTV Patterns etc.



Factors to Consider and Remember Before Pressing HTVs

There's 3 factors to consider and remember before working with HTVs.

First, TIME. Time refers on how long you have to press your design on your substrate. Time may vary depending on what HTV you are using. For Easyweed we recommend to press for 10-15 seconds.

Second, TEMPERATURE. This is how hot your heat press should be. Some HTVs need higher temperature in order for its adhesive to activate, while other HTVs can be activated on lower temperature. Again, it may vary depending on what HTV you are using.

Third, PRESSURE. Pressure is the last and final factor you need to consider. It refers on how much pressure you need to press on your design. Not enough pressure is the most common reason why HTVs are peeling off from the shirt. If the design is peeling off the shirt, it means that the pressure used on that design wasn't enough or too much. Just like the first 2 factors, it may vary depending on what HTV you are using.
How To Use HTVs
Now you know the factors to consider and remember, it's time to craft!
1. After you've chosen your design, make sure that you mirrored it before you send it to cut.
2. Put your HTV on the cutting mat glossy side facing down.
glossy side down
3. Make sure that your cutting machine is on the right setting, if correct, you can start cutting!
4. When it's finished cutting, weed it like your weeding adhesive vinyl. While weeding you will notice that the HTV is not sticky like the adhesive vinyl. When you're done with weeding, the vinyl is now ready to be pressed.
 heat transfer weeding
5. Prepare your final surface. For example, your final surface is a shirt. Press the shirt until there are no wrinkles. It will also pre-heat the shirt which makes the application a lot more easier.
6. Fold the shirt in half (shoulder to shoulder) and press it for about 5 seconds or until you've made crease. By doing this, you will have a perfectly centered design.
crease in shirt
7. Make sure that there is something underneath your final surface (shirt) like a towel or a tea towel and then do the same thing that you did with the shirt on your HTV. Fold the HTV in half vertically (sticky sides on the outside) and lightly press the carrier sheet to make a crease. Don't worry the HTV won't be ruined while doing this.
 crease in htv
8. Lay the HTV on the shirt crease against crease and then put a multipurpose paper on top of your design, if you don't have any multipurpose paper, you can also use either Teflon sheets or parchment paper. (PICTURE)

 parchment paper


9. Now, press the iron or heat press on the multipurpose paper, teflon sheet, or parchment paper. Press and hold it with pressure for about 10-15 seconds depending on what type of HTV you are using. You can also press the back of the shirt for about 10-15 seconds to make sure that the HTV is really stuck in the shirt.

10. Before removing the carrier sheet, please do remember if the HTV you are using is a cold peel or hot peel. Cold peel means that you have to wait for the HTV to cool down before removing the carrier sheet. While hot peel means that you can remove the carrier sheet even if the HTV is freshly pressed.

11. Carefully remove the carrier sheet, if the HTV doesn't stay on the shirt put the carrier sheet back again and press the HTV once more, adding more heat and pressure this time. After this, the HTV should stick on the shirt and the carrier sheet will be remove easier and faster.


 removing carrier sheet



12. And now you're done!


 siser htv vinyl


13. Note: let the shirt rest and cure for about 2-3 days before washing them!

Now, you're ready to try your first ever HTV project! We hope that you find this very educating! If you ever try making this let us know how it turned out, we would really love to see them, just send us your project on either of our accounts; on Facebook and on Instagram.

Check out some of our HTV products, we offer different types of HTV and it also comes with different colors and vibrant. (Website link for HTVs)

If you loved this article, make sure to share them with your friends and family! Stay safe and crafty, Crafters!