Custom School Items Worth Tackling
Schools are coming back in session, and perhaps bigger than ever with campus classrooms filling up once again. For hobbyists and customization businesses, this only opens room for opportunities in providing custom items to the world of education. With a large plethora of items available however, we’ll be covering just a few practical items worth looking out for, thanks to their ease of customization and affordability, alongside the best materials to apply onto them. Each of these items will serve perfectly as merchandise for schools and related brands alike, and can perhaps even be tailored to certain students and instructors.
The first items to note are big essentials for any student or faculty member: notebooks. Typically found with a plastic or cardboard front and back page, many notebooks are plain enough to at least have permanent markers ready to customize either surface. But with these notebooks, you can also customize a limited run with adhesive sticker vinyl. Relying on a line, like Siser EasyPSV, gives you a wide variety of colors and finishes ready to suit anyone’s desired style, most of which are designed to be permanently applied and robust enough to withstand weather and UV conditions. Though if you don’t have a vinyl cutter yet, but do have a sublimation printer, you can alternatively customize sublimation notebooks from Heat Press Nation.
These are somewhat similar to composition notebooks, donning a white polyester front side for sublimation and available in standard small, medium, and large sizes. All include a blank 30 page notebook by default, but they can always be replaced with higher paged refills, as long as they’re within the supported size of the notebooks. For customization, their polyester front is ready to be fully covered by a bold and colorful sublimation transfer, similar to a polyester T-shirt. And they’re also ready to hold heat transfer vinyl if desired, but as an addition to a sublimated notebook, materials like Siser EasyWeed Sub Block will be required to prevent dye migration.
The next items to consider are zip cases, whether they’re ring-bound for binders, or are standalone like a coin purse. While these aren’t as common to customize as notebooks, many zip cases are made with common fabrics like cotton, nylon, and polyester, making them ready to hold heat transfers. Also known as pencil pouches, the ring bound zip cases are typically of the first two fabrics, leaving heat transfer vinyl and paper alike to be the best choices for customization. For HTV, Siser’s EasyWeed is a go-to choice backed by a large color gamut and collection of finishes, in addition to a thin profile, though nylon zip cases will need EasyWeed Extra instead for additional support. You can expect this alternative to be just as robust, thin, and smooth as its main counterpart.
For heat transfer papers, dark papers will work best in closely maintaining the look of the original image, especially for dark zip cases. Similar applicable materials are Siser EasyColor and Supacolor Promotional. Siser EasyColor is a thin direct-to-vinyl material compatible with any inkjet printer, while Supacolor Promotional is externally produced based on your graphics and specifications, with a minimum set of 10 transfers perfect for production-level orders. Now if you want to create a fully custom zip case, polyester cases are also available as alternatives for sublimation. Artesprix offers a standalone zip case that’s made with white canvas polyester from front to back. With both sides ready for sublimation, these cases can transform into completely unique items that can easily push academic pride even with its small size.
The final item to note are backpacks, which are another essential for students that often have plenty of front room for graphics like an academic emblem. Backpacks are typically built with synthetic fabrics like polyester and nylon with their more durable nature. While white polyester backpacks stand as a strong candidate for sublimation, the majority of them use darker colors that only leave sublimation transfers to appear washed out. Fortunately, many backpacks will still hold other heat transfers just fine, whether it’s heat transfer vinyl, heat transfer paper, or options like Siser EasyColor or Supacolor Promotional. But with their amount of zippers and pockets in mind, the key to pressing transfers onto backpacks will be to use pressing pillows. These will allow such components to sink into the pillow and raise the pressing surface of the backpack to be as flat as possible as you apply your transfer.
Overall, while there are plenty of items awaiting to be customized for schools and related organizations, going for more practical items is a great way to start diving into such work. Whether you focus on notebooks, zip cases, backpacks, or anything similar, many of these are simple and affordable enough to customize at a small scale. Before customizing, always check if your school items have any tags or info regarding what materials they’re made with. And similar to custom graduation items, locality will be key to delivering items sooner to individuals and institutions in your area. With the potential to produce custom items to such customers in a single day or less, this can make for a strong start to educational customization work. To learn more about heat transfers, tools and supplies, be sure to check out our YouTube channel, or visit us at HeatPressNation.com.