How Is The Perfect Screen Print Achieved?
You can drive yourself crazy trying to get the perfect print. There’s a lot of different variables in screen printing including fabric choices, design choices, ink, and more, but knowing a few best practices to employ can make all the difference. Today, we’re taking you behind the scenes with t-shirt screen printing tips from top pros so you can pull off that perfect signature looks every time you print.
Taking Your Print from Okay to Great Takes Purpose
Any kind of screen printing needs to be done with a purpose and specific to its audience. Consider what type of fabric is being employed, where the garment is destined for, and the intention of the order. When considering your shirt, a fantastic base shirt that turns heads, gets noticed, and is a joy to wear is one of superior quality like the Bella Canvas 3001.
It All Starts with Design
Great prints are made, not created. The final use of the T-shirt should be considered during the design. Again, everything is intentional. Think about the styles used in the graphics, the types of ink, even the way the dress is made, all of which are greatly influenced by the type of shirt. For example, if you’re designing for a company’s softball team, you don’t need a large block of plastic ink on the chest. Using both functional and fashionable garments requires a design that serves the purpose of the shirt.
You need to work with designers that can see the end goal and create designs that work for that purpose. Consider the type of ink and process that needs to be used. If you’re working with a big brand that wants a consistency in tone, you may want to look at plastisol inks to ensure quality. A certain type of shirt is going to hold better with different inks. Using 100% cotton like the Bella + Canvas 3001 is an easy way to gain consistency across the board.
Mesh Count Matters
You also need to consider the mesh count used in the screen prints. Details are important here because different mesh counts produce different results. Water-based inks are better in some meshes. With them, you want good saturation of the ink on the clothing so you should look for 156 or 200 mesh numbers. With others, using plasticosols such as half a ton too much, you will need more mesh counting. Bottom line, find out how the mesh count affects the medium you choose.
Pro Tip: Use Squeegee Edge
During the printing process, you may want to use the sharpest part of the squeezing blade to remove the ink instead of meshing it. Too much pressure and a mesh will completely ruin the print. You definitely need some pressure to drive in saturation clothing but make sure you don’t turn the squeegee. Plastisol requires a little less pressure because the water-based ink is applied, so here too, you need to know your ink.
Achieving the Proper Cure Temp
Most inks are fine at 320 degrees, which requires a long time to release and water-based inks. 212 degrees is ideal and you may need to slow down the belt to keep it in the dryer until it heats up to 320 degrees. Use a temperature measuring device to ensure consistency.
We are a leading manufacturer, distributor and exporter of sublimated apparels like t-shirts, jackets, towels, hoodies, pants, polo t-shirts, capri shorts, gloves, bag pack and more. We also equip you with the custom clothing option, so that creativity and that vibrant feel of sublimation gel well and you can flaunt the look you desire.