Screen Printing Tips


Screen-print

/ˈskrēn ˌprint/

verb

Definition: force ink or metal on to (a surface) through a prepared screen of fine material so as to create a picture or pattern.

Screen printing is a printing technique where a mesh (screen) is used to transfer ink onto a substrate, except in areas made impermeable to the ink by a blocking stencil (emulsion). A blade (squegee) is moved across the screen to fill (flood) the open mesh apertures with ink, and a reverse stroke then is used to push (print) the ink through the mesh and onto the substrate (t-shirt).

Each individual color is printed at a time, so several screens can be used to produce a multicolor image or design. Dark substrates require a white underbase for bright colors.

 

 

The minimum order for screen printing is 12 pieces. Setup is one of the largest parts of our jobs, preparing screens and pre-press time. First time orders are charged a $15 per screen setup fee. This fee is waived on re-orders as long as the 12pc. minimum requirement is met. The average order turnaround takes 7-10 business days from the time Artwork is approved. If you order requires artwork services please plan ahead as this can add 3-7 business days to your order timeframe. Rush orders are accepted and available for an additional fee.

Good clear high resolution or vector artwork is best for screen print. When you zoom in on the artwork on screen it should appear crisp with clean edges free of pixellation. Our preferred file formats are Adobe Iluustrator or Photoshop files at a minimum 300 pixels per inch at 100% print size.  If  your artwork has gradients these will need to be halftones for print. Unless you are a screen ready artwork pro, leave the halftones to us, we'll set the right line count and angle for color gain. Our current standard print size is 13 x 16 keep this in mind when you create your files.

No artwork? No problem!  We can create artwork if you, or clean up you existing file- for an additional fee (you'll be surprised how low our artwork rates are).

 

The most popular ink used in the garment printing industry is Plastisol ink. Screen printing plastisol ink is easy to print, does not dry in the screen, is opaque on dark garments, and features great adhesion to most t-shirt, athletic jerseys, hoodies, heat transfers, and most textiles in general.

For printed ink colors, we use a standard set of inks that match the digital colors used for proofing. Do realize that everyone’s computer monitor will display colors a little differently so you may see some variation from the proof and final physical shirt print. PMS color matching is available and priced based on the amount of ink needed.

 

Vintage / Soft Hand Printing

A very popular technique for lightweight garments. We can get that vintage "semi-transparent look" with a soft hand feel by utilizing a special base with our standard inks- at no extra charge to you.

Metallic Inks

Puff Inks

Water Based / Discharge Printing

 

 

Print Washability

The washability of properly cured direct screen print and transfer prints is excellent. When washing, it is always recommended that the garment be turned inside out. Dry cleaning is not recommended. We suggest hanging to dry your shirts, but if using a gas or electric dryer we suggest using the tumble dry or low setting. Do not iron the printed part of the garment.

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