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Learn how to print sublimation designs from Google Docs, which is simple software freely available to everyone and easy to use!

So you have an awesome sublimation design, but you’re just not sure how to print it on your sublimation printer in the right size and color? This tutorial is for you! In this guide, I will teach you how to print sublimation designs in the proper size, orientation, and color profile from Google Docs, which is free software available to everyone on Mac and Windows computers. I will also show you how to add your own text to your sublimation design for some simple personalization!

Please Note: This sublimation print method works best for images that are already designed that you’ve downloaded from elsewhere. If you want to make your own designs beyond adding some simple text, I recommend you use Canva, Gimp, Adobe Photoshop, Inkscape, or Adobe Illustrator.

How to Print a Sublimation Design from Google Docs

  1. Download or make a sublimation design. I have several in my free resource library (such as design #394 in this tutorial), and you can also buy sublimation designs on or make them yourself in Canva.
  2. Open Google Docs in the Google Chrome web browser on your computer. You can also download and open the Google Docs app, but be aware that you won’t be able to install or access any printer profiles from a mobile device, and you’re also limited in features, so I do not recommend it on a mobile device. (Note: You will need a free Google account to use the free Google Docs software.)
  3. With Google Docs open, click on Blank in the upper left corner to open a new document.
  4. Go to the File menu and select Page setup. Change your margins to “0” and change your Paper Size to match your sublimation paper size.
  5. Go to the Insert menu, select Image, and select Upload from Computer. Locate the sublimation design you want to use (hint: it’s probably in your Downloads folder), and click Open. The image will appear and fill your page — it will not necessarily come in at the size originally designed.
  6. Resize your image to fit your blank To resize, either select the image then click and drag a corner or you can right-click the image and select Image Options and change the size in the fields. Make sure your design is the proper size for your blank. If you have a full background, I recommend making your design a touch bigger than your blank so the image will bleed off all edges.
  7. Reposition the image on your page by selecting the image, then click on “Wrap text” from the menu that appears below it. Once you do this, you can click and drag the image anywhere on your page. I recommend putting your design in the center of your page, as that ensures it won’t get cut off at the edges and you have plenty of space for cutting/tearing edges.
  8. If you want to add another image to your design, repeat steps 4-7 as necessary. Be aware that this can get tricky. If you need more control, design in Canva instead and save as a PNG and then insert the PNG in Google Docs.
  9. If you want to add some additional text to your design, go to the Insert menu, select Drawing > New. In the Drawing dialog box that appears, click the Text box icon near the top, then click and drag in the drawing area to create a text box, then release the mouse and a text box appears. Type your text, choose your font and size, and click Save & Close. Now just click on your new text and choose “Wrap Text (in front of text)” from the menu that appears below it. You can now reposition your text anywhere on your page. If you need to change anything about your text, click Edit from the menu below it.
  10. Give your document a name so you can find it later (you don’t have to worry about auto-saving, as it saves itself as you go).
  11. Go to the File menu and choose Print.
  12. Select your printer under “Destination.”
  13. Click the arrow beside “More Settings” and click on “Print Using System Dialog.”

The print settings now differ between Epson printers and Sawgrass printers.

Sawgrass Sublimation Design Print Method (Windows or Mac)

  1. On Windows:Select Sawgrass Print Manager as your printer and click Print.
    On Mac: Select the PDF menu in the lower left corner and choose Sawgrass Print Manager.
  2. Choose your settings that match your material. I also recommend High Quality over High Speed.
  3. Click the pink Print button in the Sawgrass Print Manager.

Epson Sublimation Design Print Method (Windows or Mac)

  1. Confirm that your sublimation printer is selected under “Printer” (change to your sublimation printer if not).
  2. Under “Layout” click “Flip horizontally” to mirror your image (virtually all sublimation prints should be mirrored).
  3. Other printer settings vary from printer to printer, but what you want to do is change your paper to a premium matte, your quality to best or high quality. If you’re using an Epson printer, choose “Print Settings” and change your media type to “Premium Presentation Paper Matte” (or the equivalent and Print Quality to “Best Quality.” You do NOT need to click Mirror image (if you see the option) because we already mirrored it in step 2. If you see an option for “high speed,” be sure to turn it off. One of the biggest keys to a good quality print is use high quality and NOT fast, draft, or high speed. Tip: Once you have your print settings the way you like, click on Presets and choose “Save Current Settings as a Preset” and then you can choose that every time from now on!
  4. Once all print settings are good, click on Print.

That’s all there is to it! After you’ve done it a few times, you’ll find it’s super fast and easy to do!

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