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Craft Knowledge: Important Difference Between SVG and Sublimation

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SVG vs Sublimation, maybe not a lot of crafters know what exactly the difference between these two is. But this is sooo important to know! Maybe even dare I say it should be basic knowledge before you start your journey into the crafting world.

The thing is, once you understand the difference between SVG and Sublimation, you will also get why they are soo contrasting with each other! By using the wrong format, the consequences could genuinely be dire!

But fear not! I am here to tell you all about the important facts and everything you need to know about the difference between SVG and Sublimation!

Here’s Every Difference Between SVG and Sublimation You Need to Know!

Let’s start off with SVG Scalable Vector Graphics. As the name suggests, SVG formats allow you to change the size of the design without distorting the ratio or quality of the final result. 

No matter how much you resize, zoom, or edit an SVG file, it will never become blurred or pixelated like other types of files. This is possible because an SVG file saves the information as sets of points and lines instead of pixels like PNG, JPG, or other types of raster images.

From this fact alone, you should get big hints of what is included in this SVG vs Sublimations post.

So basically, an SVG is actually a bunch of coded texts! Isn’t that so cool? This also makes them able to be edited with text editors as well as drawing software.

However, this text form is also why SVG files are made of clean-cut lines with not many colors. Since SVG formats do not save your designs as a set of pixels but rather as a series of numbers and texts, they cannot retain information regarding colors.

Difference Between SVG and Sublimation - Floral Wreath 3D Paper-Cut

The Floral Wreath 3D Paper-Cut Design above is an example of an SVG. As you can see, the design is pretty simple and made of clear lines. 

The color itself came from the paper that was used as the base material when printing the design. With the right colored paper combination and the layering method, the result will show a beautiful 3D design.

Another common use for an SVG design is a decal sticker. A decal sticker is a design that is typically printed on vinyl and then transferred to your desired surface using transfer tape.

Difference Between SVG and Sublimation - Christmas Stocking and Mittens Decal

Take this Christmas Stockings and Mittens Decal Sticker for instance. Since the design consists of only line works and no colors, an SVG format is the right format to use so that it will be easier to cut by your cutting machine. 1 point for SVG in this SVG vs Sublimation showdown!

SVG vs Sublimation for fabrics?

What you might not know is that SVGs can actually be used as a sublimation on fabric or other surfaces. Let’s see what makes an SVG sublimation different!

SVG vs Sublimation Gnome Butterflies Floral Motivation Quotes Sublimation

This Floral Motivation and Positive Quotes Design is a perfect example to see the difference between an SVG and Raster Image sublimation. Even as a sublimation, SVGs will still have more evident lines. The colors that are in the design are all color blocks with no gradients.

So, the difference between SVG and Sublimation is that sublimation typically has more colors and less-distinct lines. Which is why it is rare for sublimation to take form in an SVG file.

Difference Between SVG and Sublimation - Gnome with Butterflies

Take this Gnome with Butterflies print for example. As you can see, this design is clearly more colorful with gradient colors and more fluid lines.

As I have explained, if this design were to be set as an SVG, it would lose all the patterns and color details. Hence why the design is accessible in PNG format and not SVG. I think it’s safe to say PNG wins out this time in the SVG vs Sublimation battle.

Difference Between SVG and Sublimation - Glamour Gold Tumbler Wrap

Another example of a sublimation product is this Glamour Gold Tumbler Wrap. The most distinct feature of this design is the pattern and elegant gold color that won’t be able to be transferred ideally with a Vector Image Format like SVG. 

The difference between SVG and sublimation is that sublimation uses Raster Image Formats. So unlike SVG which saves designs in codes, Raster Image Formats uses pixels so they are able to save the data that include patterns and colors.

It’s safe to say that the most commonly found and perhaps the best image format for a sublimation print is PNG or Portable Network Graphics. This is because the standard PNG design usually has a transparent background so the main object in your design can be the ultimate focus.

But you can also use other Raster Image formats other than PNG such as JPEG and GIF. 

One thing to remember when using a design in Raster Image Format is to pay attention to the size of the file as it will directly affect the resolution quality of your final result. This also applies to the ratio of your design.

So be careful when you resize your Raster Image designs!

Aside from that, another difference between SVG and sublimation is the form of the final product, of course. Designs with SVG format will typically produce a one-line output or print. 

On the other hand, sublimation will result in a printed design on a fabric or other compatible material. This is done by using special sublimation dyes directly onto the final product or with the help of a transfer sheet.

To print a design as sublimation, you also will need a special printing machine and ink. Usually, to print a sublimation you will have to get your hands on a thermal or heat technology printer.

Did you know that if you don’t have the proper equipment to print your own sublimation design, you can still use the designs you like for other things? The most frequently found example would be cute stickers.

The difference between SVG and sublimation designs when it comes to stickers is that of the design and the production process. Whereas with SVG stickers or decals which you can print out using only your cutting machine, sublimation or Raster Image stickers require a tiny bit longer process.

You will need an inkjet printer that you have at home and the Cricut machine or other cutting machines you have available, with that you can utilize the Print Then Cut technique.

To do this, you can simply print the designs you desire on sticker paper with the inkjet printer you have at home. Then get on to your cutting machine, adjust the file, and the machine will automatically cut out your stickers.

For more detailed instructions on how to do Print Then Cut, please refer to this guide by Cricut!

Was that too complicated? Haha! I hope not!

With all the difference between SVG and sublimation I talked about above, I hope you can find it a little easier to decide what types of files and designs you want to use.

I think the most important thing when it comes to deciding whether to use SVG vs Sublimation, you need to be careful and pay attention to what your desired final product is in your vision.

Now it’s time for you to go out there and explore your crafts with all the available designs and resources you can get on Drizy Studio! From SVG shadow boxes to wood decorations, shirt and mug sublimations, or cute stickers, all you can get for low prices and even completely free!

You can also join our Facebook Community for exclusive freebies and a community of creative and full-of-love crafters! So what are you waiting for? Let’s become a part of Drizy’s community now!

Follow our social media for more How-To videos and other great offers!

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