RGB and CMYK
Pixel graphics are shown on monitors in the RGB (Red-Green-Blue) colour model. This means that each colour is composed with different proportions of these three base colours. See image below on the left.
In order to print pixel graphics, the colours must be converted into the CMYK colour model. During the digital printing, the colours are then composed of different proportions of cyan, magenta, yellow and key (black). This can lead to differences in appearance between the print and that which appears on your screen. See image below in the middle.
After rendering into CMYK colours, a few more colour value corrections are made so as to optimise as many digital designs as possible. Depending on how close your design is to the basic settings, the colours will appear as seen in the original. (The colour chart on the bottom right shows the colours on a printed fabric).
Colour settings on your monitor
Every monitor displays colours differently according to its settings. The combination of brightness, contrast and intensity can also change the appearance of colours on your monitor.
Tip: increase saturation and contrast of your graphics file. Just when the colours of your design may seem a tad too bright and glaring on your monitor, the final result on fabrics is most likely to meet your expectations. NB: you should also consider the colour of the fabrics. Colours on dark backgrounds appear differently than on white ones. (See image below.)
Have a look at the colour charts we have created to illustrate the difference on white and coloured products. This will help you see differences in colour when printed.
Digital direct printing on white background
Digital direct printing on coloured background