Screen Printing or also known as Silk Screening, is the most popular method of getting your business name out to the public without a huge price. Screen Printing has been around since the early 1600’s but wasn’t really introduced to the United States till the early 1960’s. That is when more of the people starting noticing the capabilities Screen Printing had, being able to get graphics onto shirts that look almost like paintings. Then as the technology kept evolving, Screen Printing began to be seen more on, band posters, t-shirts, and other important media.
Step 1: Your Design.
The first step to get the ball rolling for the entire Screen Printing process, is a design is needed. Not any design, but YOUR vision. Depending on how the artwork is, from being a sketch on paper, an image or a vector – we highly recommend having your artwork in VECTOR form. Don’t know what that means? You can read more about it here. That allows us to produce your design at the highest quality possible. Meaning your final end product will have clean and sharp edge finish. At this stage in the process, once artwork requirements have been met, we then produce what we call a, Digital Mock-Up. A digital mock-up is a digital representation on a shirt that we use to give the both of us an idea of your final product. Our design team will send it via email before ANY Screen Printing order is gone to full production. With this extra step, this allows us to lower the chances of mistakes. (Pretty sure you don’t want a full box of 100 shirts not looking how you expected.)
Step 2: Screen Prepping + Films
At this stage, order has been approved and we’re ready to prep up for production. Many times, people don’t think the process it takes to create an order. The process is much more than what you think. It doesn’t matter if we’re doing just a dozen of shirts or doing thousands, the preparation is all the same. So films are printed at this stage, which is pretty much like stencils. They’re printed on special transparent paper and then passed down and exposed to screens with special UV Light.
Step 3: Prepping Your Colors
Now that we have some artwork approved and we have screens ready to be used, we now prep up the ink colors your design has. This is where the fun begins for our mixers. Did you know we can match up ANY Pantone: Solid Coated color? We have a special 13 color mixing system, that allows us to do that. (Minimums for Pantone matching is 36 pieces). So you can imagine the possibilities you can have here for your designs.
Step 4: Printing
Once the ink is ready and matched up, we load the screens onto our press and align them up so they can be printed correctly. At this stage, you’re garments get put onto the press and ink goes on them. This would be the climax of the process before final inspection and off to you. We have a few presses but our professional operator will load your garments, print them and then unload them on our special Dryer to fully cure your ink. Curing is one of the most important parts of this process. We have to cure the shirt at a specific temperature or else the print won’t be long lasting. At the end of the Dryer we have a big catcher that will have your shirts dropped into.
Step 5: The Finishing Touches
Order has been printed and now in the final stages of quality control. We have our professional care team, inspect all shirts for any misprints or anything that looks off. At this stage as well, if you have requested any add-on services, like adding hang tags, stickers, or even sewing your companies hem tags, this is the stage that all goes down. Once your order and each shirt has been checked down for perfection, we then fold and box the shirts up for shipment.
That’s it! A rough idea of our Screen Printing Process. You may ask? Why do you say 7-15 business days for turnaround times? We normally say that to give us some buffer time in case something delayed in distributor (back orders), or our production stage. We strive our best to make things smooth as possible without any mistakes but we as humans, can make mistakes. On average of orders, we push things out at six or faster business days.