So, in case you are thinking doing a start-up is all about exploring those unexplored paths and feeling a joy of achievement in something as simple as getting a business card printed – no that’s not the case. There are disasters of all kinds waiting for you as you try to go through the cheaper route of doing things.
I was wondering if there is a cheaper way to get t-shirts with our logo on it. Started with sites like myntra.com. But the prices starting from Rs. 399 just didn’t make sense for us. While looking for some DIY (Do It Yourself) solution, I came across the information about transfer papers. So, you can print on that paper with your ink jet printer and then iron it over the t-shirt to have the printout transferred to your t-shirt. Fair enough. I ran to Staples in Marthahalli. Guess what! I even found that paper. It wasn’t quite cheap, but if it worked out, we’d still have cheaper branded t-shirts than anything else I could get. Spent next one day looking for some plain, reasonably priced t-shirts on the shopping streets of Bangalore. Finally the moment came. I took a printout – remembered to take a mirror image. Even tested this mirror image thing on a normal paper before wasting a pricey transfer paper. Finally, the printout came on the transfer paper. With hope in my heart, I searched for my old iron, found it after rummaging through the entire house, heated it to fullest, pressed it on the paper and held my breath. 15-20 seconds later – I lifted the iron, but there was no change in the t-shirt. Or in the transfer paper. Both were intact with some warmth coming out of them. What happened? I tried everything else possible. Printed on the other side of the paper and tried transferring it. No effect. Peeled off the part of the paper that should be peeled off only after the transfer and pressed iron on the remaining layer. The colour never got transferred to the t-shirt, but the paper got stuck to the iron (thankfully after the iron cooled off, it came out easily and no permanent damage was done).
I gave up. Abhaya searched for some instructions on Internet. After watching a You-Tube Video discovered by him, I realized that my old iron was not getting hot enough. The next morning I borrowed an iron from my neighbour. Again went through the same process from hope in heart to holding of breath. The results were different this time. The colour still did not transfer, but the parts of the cloth, which were in direct contact with iron did get their share of burn. That was the disaster. Three days, purchase of 10 transfer papers and 4 t-shirts, and a burnt t-shirt later, I still haven’t figured out how to transfer that damned thing to the t-shirts 😦