Design

Custom Desk Name Plates with Sublimation

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sublimation desk name plates

Are you ready to make some custom desk name plates with sublimation? You could use any design you would like for these. I’m going to use the idea of making these as a teacher gift, but you could make these for friends, family, to sell, or whatever you would like. Yes, they do stand up on their own because we’re going to sublimate them flat and then bend them. If you saw my previous post on sublimating on metal, I did photos in a similar way on bigger blanks.

teacher desk name plates

Custom Desk Name Plates

Want to see me sublimate and bend these metal desk name plates? Just click play on the video below! I will walk you through the entire process.

Can’t watch the video or miss some of the steps? You can follow along below as well!

Supplies Needed

custom desk name plates supplies

Designing in Cricut Design Space

I’m going to print these out from Cricut Design Space. You can use whatever program you would like. Upload your image (here I am using one pink and one blue). Add whatever words you would like in any font. The font I am using is called BFC Santa’s Candy. I changed my font color to gray instead of black. Locate your words on the image, then pick both the font and the pencil and click “flatten”. This makes it a print then cut design. Repeat for all of your pencils. Then make them approximately 1.75 x 7.5 inches to fit on the front of the desk name plate.

designing in cricut design space

Click “make it”. Both of my pencils will fit on one piece of paper but I wanted a bit more room between them. Click and drag them around the page to move them. Then click “continue” and click “send to printer”. Pick your printer, turn off bleed, then turn on use system dialogue, and click “print”. Choose print preferences to make sure you have a matte paper setting, high quality, mirrored image, and turned off high speed. Then click “OK” and print. 

printing sublimation in cricut design space

Prepping Your Blank

Once you have your print, cut each piece out with scissors discarding the black box around the edge. You do not need the black box as it is for cutting on the Cricut machine. You will note that everything is mirrored on these prints.

preparing sublimation blanks

The side of the metal panel with the scoreline is actually the back. The front is plain. We only want to use the top portion of the front because that’s all that will be visible when it’s sitting on the desk. I like to take two pieces of heat-resistant tape, place it where it’s directly on the line on the back, flip that over, and push the heat-resistant tape over to the front. Now I have a guide for placing my design.

metal sublimation blank

Clean the blank with a lint roller then put your print on with the ink side down in the correct location. Once located, use some additional heat-resistant tape to hold it in place. You can remove the placement pieces you added above during this stage. Now my plate is ready for the heat press. 

how to add a design to a metal sublimation blank

Pressing the Blanks

Heat your heat press to 385 degrees Fahrenheit and set your timer for 120 seconds. Place the Nomex pad in the press then cycle your heat press a couple of times in order to heat up the pad. You want that Nomex pad to be hot when you start sublimating these custom desk name plates. Set your press to medium pressure during this step. Place the blanks inside the heat press with protective paper on the top and the bottom. The sublimation print should be up in the press.

heat press for sublimation

NOTE: I did press two blanks at one time. Once they are done, remove everything using heat-resistant gloves and put it on a heat-resistant mat in order to cool. You can allow this to cool completely or you can do the next steps hot. 

Bending the Blanks

First, remove your sublimation print. You can see just how cute these custom desk name plates are turning out.

removing sublimation paper from blank

To bend each one, you’ll just want to bend along the score line along the back. I like to put thumbs on both sides of the score line and just press in.

bending metal sublimation blanks

You may do it in a couple of different places, but the panel should bend fairly easily. Just work your hands up and down the panel bending each place equally until you get the look you want.

making custom desk name plates

Once you have it bent as you would like it, your name plate is done and ready to be gifted. Such an easy teacher gift and you can make them in minutes!

how to bend a metal sublimation blank

Customizing This Project

Remember, you can customize these to be whatever you want. Whether these are name plates for your boss for Boss’ Day, gifts for holidays, or teacher appreciation gift ideas. You could even make custom desk name plates for friends getting a job promotion. I think this is something that’s unique that you can do with your sublimation printer, plus it is easy to make. 

I used Cricut Design Space for my design, but you could use other programs as well. You could do a more complicated design in something like Photoshop. You could even try Canva for making a design.

custom desk name plates

If you are looking for a way to make custom desk name plates at home with your sublimation printer, this one is for you. If you don’t have a sublimation printer and want to use Infusible Ink for this one, you’re more than welcome to do that as well. Infusible ink will definitely work on these types of blanks. 

sublimation desk name plates

Love these custom desk name plates and want more ideas? Try the links below as well!

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These sublimation sheets are perfect for those that don’t have a sublimation printer but want to try the craft!

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Make a flag for your garden, car, or even just a fun party with a sublimation printer and any design!

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Sublimation License Plates

Make your own custom license plates with sublimation in minutes!

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Glow in the Dark Sublimation Shirt

Make a cute Halloween shirt that really glows using sublimation and your Cricut machine!

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Want to print the instructions for making these name plates for desks? Use the card below!

custom desk name plates

Total Time 15 minutes

Sublimation Desk Name Plates

Make your own custom desk name plates with your sublimation printer and these metal blanks!

Supplies

  • Desk name plate blank These have a groove in the back that will allow you to bend them into shape.
  • Sublimation printer
  • Sublimation ink
  • Heat Press
  • Sublimation paper
  • Lint Roller
  • Heat Resistant Tape
  • Artesprix Protective Paper
  • Heat Resistant Mat
  • Heat resistant gloves
  • Nomex pad
  • Pencil image

Instructions

Designing in Cricut Design Space

  • I’m going to print these out from Cricut Design Space. You can use whatever program you would like. Upload your image (here I am using one pink and one blue). Add whatever words you would like in any font. The font I am using is called BFC Santa’s Candy. I changed my font color to gray instead of black. Locate your words on the image, then pick both the font and the pencil and click “flatten”. This makes it a print then cut design. Repeat for all of your pencils. Then make them approximately 1.75 x 7.5 inches to fit on the front of the desk name plate.

  • Click “make it”. Both of my pencils will fit on one piece of paper but I wanted a bit more room between them. Click and drag them around the page to move them. Then click “continue” and click “send to printer”. Pick your printer, turn off bleed, then turn on use system dialogue, and click “print”. Choose print preferences to make sure you have a matte paper setting, high quality, mirrored image, and turned off high speed. Then click “OK” and print.

Prepping Your Blank

  • Once you have your print, cut each piece out with scissors discarding the black box around the edge. You do not need the black box as it is for cutting on the Cricut machine. You will note that everything is mirrored on these prints.
  • The side of the metal panel with the scoreline is actually the back. The front is plain. We only want to use the top portion of the front because that’s all that will be visible when it’s sitting on the desk. I like to take two pieces of heat-resistant tape, place it where it’s directly on the line on the back, flip that over, and push the heat-resistant tape over to the front. Now I have a guide for placing my design.

  • Clean the blank with a lint roller then put your print on with the ink side down in the correct location. Once located, use some additional heat-resistant tape to hold it in place. You can remove the placement pieces you added above during this stage. Now my plate is ready for the heat press.

Pressing the Blanks

  • Heat your heat press to 385 degrees Fahrenheit and set your timer for 120 seconds. Place the Nomex pad in the press then cycle your heat press a couple of times in order to heat up the pad. You want that Nomex pad to be hot when you start sublimating these custom desk name plates. Set your press to medium pressure during this step. Place the blanks inside the heat press with protective paper on the top and the bottom. The sublimation print should be up in the press.

  • NOTE: I did press two blanks at one time. Once they are done, remove everything using heat-resistant gloves and put it on a heat-resistant mat in order to cool. You can allow this to cool completely or you can do the next steps hot.

Bending the Blanks

  • First, remove your sublimation print. You can see just how cute these custom desk name plates are turning out.

  • To bend each one, you’ll just want to bend along the score line along the back. I like to put thumbs on both sides of the score line and just press in.

  • You may do it in a couple of different places, but the panel should bend fairly easily. Just work your hands up and down the panel bending each place equally until you get the look you want.

Tried this project?tag us to show off your work!

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