Relabelling is a funny thing, it’s something that is constantly happening, but we don’t really acknowledge it. If you’re a small to medium business or clothing line looking to resell bulk printed garments, then it’s something that probably applies to you, so now’s a good time to suss it out.
T-shirt relabelling and printing pretty much allows you to use a product of a wholesale company and sell it as your own without any hassle. This is fantastic, but as with everything in life, there are limitations. You can’t just grab any T-shirt, get rid of the branding and claim it as yours to sell under your name. That would be leaving the relabelling zone and entering a not so legal one. Below are a few basic guidelines to help you figure out what’s considered fine and what’s crossing the line when it comes to T-shirt printing with labels.
Tear Away Ready Labels or Manual Removal?
Some wholesale companies even produce garments with labels that are so ready to relabel they come pre-prepared with a tearaway label. They’re literally screaming out for budding designers to come and make them beautiful. This is an attractive option for designers who want to relabel, but don’t want to pay for a more “careful” and therefore more expensive way of getting rid of a label. For less easy to remove labels, the job is usually in the hands of the one doing the alterations and requires a little more effort (and money, such is life). Both options are easy enough to achieve. Get in touch for more information on what to do and how to do it.
Things to Know about T-shirt Relabelling and Printing
To put it simply, someone that’s starting a clothing line is not required to create T-shirts from scratch, that might be a little steep of a project. It’s pretty much the standard procedure to get someone else to do the dirty work for you, whilst you let your creative license run riot. It’s there to make life easier and spend time focusing on all of the fun bits such as individual concepts, designs and prints. This gives smaller brands a push in the direction of success as they already have a premium quality product and therefore are kitted out with a “competitive edge” against big established brands. Here’s some pointers to T-shirt printing with labels.
In order to customise T-shirt labels you need to make sure of two things: First things first, make sure that the supplier of the garment actually allows you to relabel it, this will rule out potential future drama. Also, it’s worth double-checking that the label you replace it with abides to the laws of the place you’re going to sell the product in. If you’re not sure about any part of this process – ask the supplier to avoid any awkward situations.
Disclaimer- In case you’re wondering, which hopefully you are. You’ll be happy to hear that we do offer relabelling services here at printsome. Depending on the garment, we can either carefully stitch out the OG label or just snip it off, no fuss. Of course, the first is going to cost a bit more as it’s a lot more messing around.
1. When is Relabelling Illegal?
As wonderful as relabelling is, you have to make sure you’re doing it right and not inadvertently treading on anybody’s toes (breaking the law). Relabelling the legal way is a lifesaver once you’ve got it sussed. Here’s how to figure out when it’s definitely not okay to put your labels into someone else’s garments!
- When the garment is already for retail
Our first example of T-shirt relabeling and printing done WRONG would be when you put your labels in a product specifically designed for retail sale. It’s pretty safe to say that more often than not if the garment is already in the shop – it’s not designed for resale/relabelling.
A garment in a shop is already a finished work of art and is not to be reworked or sold under a new name as it is someone else’s project. However a wholesale plain tee would be seen more like a blank canvas, there to help you create your masterpiece and put your own name on it.
- When the garment has a distinct feature
Another moment relabelling isn’t given the green light is when the product to be relabelled has a distinct feature such as a pattern or a design. As we mentioned above, it’s only cool to switch the label when we’re dealing with basic items. No crazy pockets, prints, or cuts allowed, just the blank canvas.
- When using someone’s else brand
Our last example of how NOT to relabel would be when making a knockoff product. This isn’t cool as it undermines someone else’s hard work and reputation. In the industry of wholesale printing for resellers, it is never okay to relabel a product to make it look like it was produced by another better-known brand. We support originality and we play the game fairly. If you’re unsure of whether or not your game plan is a no go, drop the supplier a message.
2. Labelling Requirements in the UK and Europe
When doing wholesale T-shirt printing for resellers, you’ve got to do your research into legal requirements. Make sure you replace the original label with one that complies with the laws of where you’re going to sell the product. There’s a lot of contradicting information in cyberspace regarding what info does and doesn’t need to appear on the label of a textile product. After some intense digging and sifting through piles of information, here’s what we’ve managed to find out:
What’s a textile in the UK and Europe?
Let’s start by stating what the EU and UK consider as a textile product, prepare yourselves it’s a little wordy but here we go;
“Any raw, semi-worked, worked, semi-factures, manufactured, semi-made-up or made-up product which is exclusively composed of textile fibers, regardless of the mixing or assembly process employed”
So, as long as your garment is 100% textile, however, it’s made or regardless of the textile used – it’s passed the test. It also considers a textile product any item which overall weight is made up of at least 80% textile.
If your item falls into either category, congratulations, you can officially declare your item a textile product.If there are any non-textile components to the garment, they must be clearly stated. This includes animal origin such as bones, fur and feathers. This has been vital since 2012 and is important to the ethics of a company, transparency is key to successful business partnerships.
Durable, easily legible, visible and accessible labels
Another law is that all garments must be labelled whenever they hit the market. To get the go-ahead this label must be “durable, easily legible, visible and accessible.” It’s not necessary for labels to be sewn in or printed directly on the garment. Swing tags do the job and it’s also fine for the information to appear on the product’s package. As long as the required information is there with the product at the time of sale (and legible!) your back is fully covered.
Abbreviations within the labels are discouraged if people don’t understand what they say it kind of defeats the point. If the manufacturer chooses to use them they must be explained in the same label.
Identify used fibres
If supplies are manufactured outside of the EU or UK, it is up to the importer to check that the fibres in the garment are properly identified.
Keep in mind in which country you are selling
When preparing garments to be sold internationally, make sure they comply with the laws of the end destination as they change from place to place. When selling your product in an EU or UK country, the information on the personalised labels for clothes must be in the official language of the place where it is being sold. All countries that are members of the EU and UK comply with the regulations listed here, but they may have their own on top of these.
Size and care instructions need their own space
Other information such as size and care instructions should be displayed separately from the fibre composition, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be on a different label so long as it’s all there!
For more info read this post dedicated to the care of printed garments.
3. Flammability Requirements
When it comes to flammability warnings on labels, it is important to play it safe. It is compulsory to label nightwear – especially children’s nightwear – if they don’t meet EU/UK flammability standards with a label that says in big, bold red letters “KEEP AWAY FROM FIRE”. This is something you might not initially consider but definitely take note, this isn’t a good one to forget. You can find more specific information here.
4. Mandatory and Not Mandatory Requirements
The main purpose of the EU and UK regulations are so that people know exactly what they’re beloved garments are made up of and this info is a MUST HAVE. This is useful for allergy reasons, ethical reasons and general preference. That aside there are other types of information that regularly appear on labels that are not mandatory, but still encouraged.
Although not legally required it’s encouraged to include the country of origin, how to care for the garment and the garment size.
As we STILL have no real guidance regarding the ongoing process that is BREXIT we’re still a little in the dark about how to move forward label wise. We can’t confirm yet whether these guidelines will still be in place after (if) the country finalises its exit negotiations from the union.
Label Uses and Styles
Labels may seemingly have no physical function within the garment itself but they are definitely a must-have. There’s a whole world of labels out there that are required for different things. A handful of the most common labels or tags are for branding, sizing and care labels which were all pretty familiar with. Other more technical tags usually included are the flag labels, manufacturing codes, line mark labels and special labels. This may seem a dramatic amount of labels for one garment but each holds different information and therefore has its own special role.
Once you’ve figured out what information makes the cut and what gets left behind, you have a whole new hurdle to get over. What style labels are there, and what style will you choose to run with for your brand. Care labels aren’t really a fashion statement so long as they’re functional they pass the test, a simple printed tag in black or white usually does the trick. Branding is a different game though, these tags are here to define the quality and image of your company – so you’ve got to choose wisely.
Specific Types of Labels
Woven Labels and Tags
Woven labels and tags instantly add a luxury touch to your garment. They are loom woven with different threads to create your brand name or logo the elegant way. They can be used in any position of the garment. It’s down to you whether you opt for a subtle inside neck attachment or decide to make more of a statement on the outside of your garment, so long as it’s there.
They are limited to a fairly simple choice of colours and styles due to how they’re made, but simplicity is elegance after all.
A similar concept to woven labels are printed labels, they are often a slightly cheaper alternative but allow a little more flexibility on the creativity scale. If you’ve bought more than a handful of garments in your life, you’ll be pretty familiar with them. These usually come printed on either cotton, satin or a polyester blend.
Printed Labels are a little more flexible in terms of your image, colours, fonts etc. They are digitally printed onto the chosen material and then attached to the garments wherever you choose. You can guarantee absolute precision with printed labels, the sky’s the limit. This means free reign style wise you can get carried away with wacky colours and images and be assured that anything is possible. By adding funky printed labels to your brand you get to keep your style looking fresh right down to the core.
Printed labels are durable, they don’t lose their look in the machine. However, the finished image looks (so long as it’s printed with a high-quality company), is how it’s gonna stay. There’s also a pretty quick turnaround with printed labels as they require less work than their woven competitor. So long as they are securely attached to your garment at the time of sale, go ahead and place them wherever you feel inclined.
Another popular way of labelling garments is to scratch the physical label and instead have the label directly printed on the inside of the tee (usually inside the neck so as not to be missed). This is an awesome concept as it ensures the survival of the brand, nobody’s cutting these labels out any time soon! These kind of labels are most cost-effective if it’s performed using screen printed transfers branded to the garment by a heat press process.
The LATEST trend, that is becoming the ultimate way to get your brand ahead of the game is the use of HEM TAGS. If you’ve not heard about them, you’ve definitely seen them, and quite possibly own a few garms that are already rocking them. These are easy to identify and are the little folded material logos often found on the outside of your tee on the hemline. As they gain popularity and brands push for funky new concepts it’s pretty common the find a hem tag almost anywhere on the garment made from anything (from silicon to wood – you name it!).
Swing tags are external tags that hang (oh so stylishly) from the garment. They can be anything your brand desires from elegant to industrial and can be made from whatever material you desire from cardboard to wood or even metal! Swing tags are a fast way of adding your company brand and info to a product without any hassle.
Whatever you decide to work with, we’ve got your back. There’s a lot of information to absorb here so feel free to keep this as a go-to reference for when you start getting the ball going with your labels. Let us know your vision and our skilful team will help piece it together for you. If you’ve got any questions, we’re ready (and super happy) to help just Get in touch and we’ll help you figure out what you need and how to get it.
T-shirt Printing For Brands in the UK
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