What Is Screen Printing?

Silk or screen printing is a cutting-edge way of printing personalized hoodies and t-shirts with images.
Happy young woman in a white t-shirt

A screen printer uses solid inks that sit on top of a shirt rather than soak into the fabric. This enables the production of custom clothing and related products in a simple and efficient manner.

Screen printing

Most businesses utilize screen printing, which was once the only viable option for producing large quantities of personalized t-shirts. Screen printing, which uses thicker inks, is preferable for graphics that only employ one or double ink colors. This method will make colors jump out at you like jack in the box. When touched, the thick ink has a delicate feel and may create an incredible look. We recommend screen printing if you’re not in a hurry and only need a few colors for your t-shirt. It looks wonderful and is usually more cost-effective for greater numbers.

Screen printing

How Does This Procedure Work?

 On the screen, a negative of the graphic is printed to be laid against the shirt. Ink is rolled over the screen once it has been properly set, and only the regions with the printed design allow ink to pass through. You will find that the ink settles on the t-shirt, which is then laid aside to dry.

To further help you understand the procedure, here’s a breakdown:

The Screen

It’s time to get started after you’re satisfied with the mockup of how your shirt(s) will look. Try to picture the monitor on a door of a home. This is similar to what designers use but with a higher effect. 

A good designer takes the screen out of its wooden frame and starts to prepare it. It is then covered in an emulsion layer to prevent ink from penetrating. The ultimate effect is a color that is two-toned (green and the screen color which is a shade of yellow). The screen colors are insignificant and have no bearing on the final printing.

The Color

Color is where the magic takes place. A designer starts by matching and mixing bespoke colors until they achieve the precise colors requested by clients. They use inks of the highest quality that are developed to endure a long time. The inks are also thick, ensuring that the design turns out beautifully.

The Media

The shirt is silk-screened at the press. The t-shirt is stretched over a gadget that looks like an ironing board. Everything is aligned with lasers to ensure that the design on all of your shirts is in the same place.

After that, the screens are lowered onto the t-shirt where the bespoke ink mixture is poured on top of it and moved from one end of the silkscreen to another. The t-shirt soaks up the ink on the front as the ink moves over the screen, and the design begins to appear.

For a visual representation of what this procedure entails, you can check out this presentation.

The Dry

A dryer is then used to dry the shirts. It’s more of a conveyor belt system with an exact temperature adjusted to ensure the shirts dry in one run and the colors don’t spill.

The Finished Work

Silk screening, unlike DTG printing, is done entirely by hand. This printing method is ideal for artwork with only a few colors or large volumes. A silk-screened t-shirt can easily be identified. If you brush your hand over the ink, it will smear and have a raised appearance. This is because the ink was applied to the front of the t-shirt.

Advantages of This Procedure

The following are some advantages of this method:

  1. This is a cost-effective solution  when fewer ink colors are required 
  2. A low-cost option for large quantities.
  3. It’s possible to create intricate designs (e.g. fine lines, small text).
  4. Silkscreen printing is a versatile technique that may be used on a variety of materials (cotton, metal, dri-fit polyester, plastic, wood, glass).
  5. It is durable.
  6. The screens can be saved and reused, which cuts down on repeat order lead times.
  7. The prints are thin and light, resulting in a soft-hand feel to the clothes.

Drawbacks of This Procedure

The following are some drawbacks of this method:

  1. It is not cost-effective for lower quantities.
  2. It’s not cost-effective when a design incorporates a lot of colors, (that is 3 colors and above).
  3. It is only cost-effective if the design graphics are identical across all pieces.
  4. This method can be difficult to master since it necessitates specific knowledge and materials.

This article discussed relevant information about this procedure. You can also check here: https://www.wikihow.com/Screen-Print-at-Home if you need tips to help you print at home.

Conclusion

For simple company logos, team names, and text-on-t-shirts, we recommend screen printing. In addition, this option looks well on both bright and dark t-shirts.

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