There was no ignoring them. Almost every apparel booth at the AVCA Convention in the Kentucky International Convention Center in Louisville displayed jerseys in wild neon and bold colors, with stars, polka dots, and other busy designs.
The official printing process that creates these shirts is called “sublimation,” meaning large rolls of thin paper are printed with the ink, placed directly onto uncut white fabric, and then heated so the ink sublimates, or moves directly from the solid to the gas state without ever being liquid, fusing itself onto the white fabric. This method allows the customer to print onto and design any part of the jersey, where screen printing is limited to certain areas. Forget the two-toned blue jersey with white letters, the current market has so much more to offer.
Some of the new Premier Volleyball League (PVL) teams are already rocking these fashionable jerseys, and we can definitely expect to see them across the country in juniors’ tournaments and college matches. Plus Mizuno will likely be outfitting our national teams in sublimated red, white, and blue!
Originally published in February 2013