Here are the top tips for print-on-demand shade matching for digitally printing fabrics. All you need to know for a perfect match on your fabric and your pattern. In this article we will explain all about the shade systems, how to prepare your files and how to achieve the closest match to any existing collections or desired colour. 

Colour is extraordinary. The vibrance and beauty we see in nature or even in our décor can affect our perspective, emotions and influence us. That is why hues play such an important role in design, fashion and interiors. Look at digitally printed fabric products to see how your fabric design can be affected. 

Understanding different colour systems in digital printing

It's a matter of fact. You need perfect shades when you print items digitally. It makes no difference what industry you're in, whether it's fashion or interiors or you're creating an original item. You can easily achieve these using the digital fabric print process.

Remember, it's the 21st century, and we expect the digital print to match our computer screen.

You’ve probably discovered the hard way that this isn’t always the case. Computers, phones, note books and other devices all display tints in Red Green Blue shade gamut). For this reason, it's important to save your artwork in this large format when you print.

Designers use the Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Key system for screen (lithographic or offset printing), for various media including mixed media. This includes posters, banners, book and magazine pages, greeting cards, booklets with a number of pages, a table plan, business items for the office, business cards, greeting cards, single page leaflets or flyers, quality luxury stickers or stickers for house use, labels and more. People use digital printers to screen-print on fabrics.

We calibrate our printers to quick view compare and match your screens. We use hex codes profiles in our printing service to get the best quality results.

Whilst the Red Green Blue system gives the biggest shade space (extended shade gamut) for your screen, if you used only those inks – no black –you would get very disappointing results (which is why we will never do that).

We recommend that you use a physical atlas (the chart guide). It has over 2400 hex blocks, which ensures your file matches your textile print. Learn all about digital printing here.

Color profile digital fabric printing

A colour print profile is a way that a certain device (say a computer or a phone) captures or displays colours.

This profile tells a device how it displays and prints hues for a digitally created print.

A camera captures the profile. When it appears on your screen, it will look exactly the way your fabric will look when it’s printed.

This is where the journey to a perfect match begins.

It all starts with calibration

This is the first step in the print service – once that’s begun, you’ll never look back!

Calibration is a specialist print process. It involves printing over 10,000 chips (Pantone spot colour) onto each fabric.

We scan these chips using a specialised tool called a Spectrophotometer.

The Spectophotometer sends a message to the printer software giving details of what the shade should print like.

Watch this video!

With this information, the software ‘builds the colour space’. This involves creating the range of possible hues it can print on a fabric. You choose a particular setting and the software does the rest.

You can also alter the shades of ink you use for printing in percentages. This ensures high print quality. Our print team are expert in this specialised skill.

This print method involves reproducing the closest possible match to your screen for high photo quality.

Matching screen shades to fabric bases

When you're digital printing on textiles, it’s hard to know whether the final result will match your artwork. This is why shade gamut ink is so important for printing. It helps to create the closest match possible for quality results.

Hopefully you’ll be happy with the shade match and can see the design come to life. However, if you want to get an exact match, it’s important to use sampling.

If you like, why not use our handy mini atlas to get the perfect match. It doesn’t cost a lot and is an excellent shade matcher. 

Let’s say you’re creating a piece of custom fabric that needs the print to match other textiles or items currently in your possession.

maake’s professional quality printing services ensure a close match for your products. All you need to do is use the specific guide.

Pantone offers excellent an shade matching service. The 'Pantone Shade Guides' are ideal for artists, designers, printers, manufacturers, marketers, and clients in a variety of industries.

These guides give you accurate identification, design specification, quality control, and communication.

Pantone to RAL Conversion Chart | Pantone Chart

Remember: we cannot guarantee a perfect match to any colour system except when you match to our atlas.

Create the perfect colour digital print

Fabrics all have different bases, textures and finishes, and printing them involves a variety of different inks to create a print.

All computer screens have different brightness and shade strengths (for example, some are warmer, some are cooler or more blue). 

So it’s important that you not only match the hue to your screen if you want excellent accuracy.

Get your colour atlas

Textiles can have different base hues(beige/white). When you order your atlas you need to pick the fabric you intend to use. Different bases display the colors in a slightly different shade depending on the fabric composition, therefore only the correct base can show you a realistic representation. 

Once you find the right base then you can use the hex code. Rest assured, it will look just as you envisioned it. Another option is our easy 20 x 20 cm sample printsLearn how to use the printed maake atlas here.

Colour digital print suggestions


    • Order a sample prior to a big run to ensure you are happy with the shades

  • Set your file with a standard Red, Green, Blue profile, extended gamut
  • Order a shade atlas on the fabric you want to order if you need an exact colour match to ensure a perfect match
  • Get in touch with our team if you need help – we have a full artwork studio to help you create original design, colour manage print or tweak and re-colour existing artwork and PDFs. Please contact our art working team at: or call us on 02036955442.


  • Design and submit your files in the right colour format (ideally cyan, magenta, yellow and key).
  • Match to screen when you are using fabric printing – always match to a print sample where possible to avoid disappointment. Use the screen only as a guide, not a guarantee, not even if it’s a calibrated screen.

You don’t know anything about colour printing? Let us help you

Make sure you contact us if you need help. We offer all the solutions and every service you need.

We have a full art printing studio on hand with every modern service to help you create original designs for your business, manage printing or tweak and recolor existing artwork.

Please get in touch with our art working team at: or call us on 02036955442

Contact us

Whether your business is in fashion, interiors or you are putting together your own business project, perfect hues are essential. You can easily achieve this with this particular fabric print process and our fast turnaround. 

Check out the Pantone to RAL Conversion Chart | Pantone Chart.


March 30, 2022 — Alexander Wills