Let’s say you own a business and are trying to decide what kind of materials you’d like to use in your advertising — perhaps the lettering on your car or office windows. Where does one begin with decals and vinyl decal materials? This article talks about the different types of decals and answers the questions “What are decals made from?” and “What is the difference between decal and vinyl?”
Before discussing the different types of decals, it’s important to know what a decal is. A decal is a design made on special paper for transfer onto another surface. Some of these surfaces may include glass, metal, or other materials.
You might think that vinyl stickers and vinyl decals are the same things. That’s a fairly accurate statement, but there are a few differences, and it’s important to know what those differences are when deciding between the two. The type of surface you are sticking a decal on is a major factor.
Mainly, it depends on the final product you are shooting for. If you’re looking for a simple monotone, one-color design, a decal is usually sufficient. But, if you want something that is more detailed and has a number of colors, then it’s a vinyl sticker you’ll want to look into.
Vinyl decals are usually monotone in color and tend to be smaller and less intricate. A vinyl cutter is connected to the computer to read design files. A cutter uses a single blade to cut the vinyl material. The roll of vinyl is moved back and forth as the blade cuts the material. The cutting blade only cuts deep enough to cut through the vinyl material, and not the backing paper.
After the vinyl sheeting is cut, weeding is done by hand. This removes all the excess vinyl that’s not part of the design. The more detailed the design is, the longer the weeding takes to accomplish. Finally, the decal gets a layer of adhesive so it can be more easily transferred to the area it’s being applied to.
Vinyl stickers are colorful and more complicated by nature. Each of the vinyl stickers is printed onto vinyl using a wide format printing machine. The process uses special moveable vinyl for stickers, which is much easier to apply and remove than other types of stickers.
It benefits from all the longer-lasting tendencies of vinyl. This is particularly important for wall stickers, as you wouldn’t want to damage your wall when the time comes for removal. Shapes are either manually or machine-cut from the printed vinyl, wherever it is necessary, to create the design. The entire sticker is cut from the vinyl sheeting.
Understanding of the main differences between vinyl decals and vinyl stickers will help you choose the one that best fits your needs.