Originally designed as an undergarment, the T-shirt has undergone tremendous transformation to become a ubiquitous item in the wardrobe. Today, T-shirts have become fashion statements, and this has contributed to the rapid growth of the T-shirt screen-printing industry. A T-shirt printing technique that has become a staple for emerging T-shirt printing businesses is screen-printing. However, screen-printing T-shirts requires a careful hand because even a small mistake can be quite costly. This article highlights factors that determine the quality of T-shirt screen-prints.
Screen Mesh Count -- One of the essential tools for T-shirt screen-printing is the screen. It is crucial to note that different screens have different mesh counts, which is the number of fibres per square inch. Therefore, a 200-mesh screen means that there are 200 fibres per square inch of the screen. When screen-printing a T-shirt, it is crucial to choose a screen with the right mesh count. Ideally, screens with high mesh counts are the best for images with finer details and when using thinner inks. The reason for this is that such screens keep thinner inks from flooding a fabric while at the same time bringing out the finer details. On the other hand, screens with a low mesh count are ideal for specialty printing, such as projects where glitter or shimmer inks are used. The large spaces are large enough to allow flakes through the screen and onto the fabric.
Squeegee Blade -- When applying ink on a screen, there is no better tool to use than a squeegee. Most professional squeegees are made from rubber, neoprene, or polyurethane. Squeegee blades can be square, bevelled, or round, and your choice depends on the project at hand. For instance, square or straight-edge squeegees are used when applying thinner inks on screens. It is because the sharp edges ensure that enough ink discharges through the screen without applying too much pressure. A squeegee with a rounded blade is designed for applying thicker inks or when printing on heavier fabrics. However, you have to apply enough pressure to ensure that adequate ink goes through the screen.
Screen Registration -- Screen-printing is arguably the best technique for bulk T-shirt printing. All you have to do once you have prepared all the screens is set them up and start applying ink. However, you must ensure that each screen is positioned accurately so that the final image is a replica of the computer-generated design. If you do not align the screens correctly, then part of the images will overlap, thereby lowering your prints' quality. It is particularly the case for multi-coloured designs. The best way to ensure all screens align is to have registration marks on artwork and each screen. For instance, a mark at the centre of the artwork should line up perfectly with the centerline of the screen printing platform for better results.
To learn more, contact a resource that offers T-shirt screenprinting.