How Custom T-shirts are Made

How do we get the image you see on your computer screen to onto your T-Shirts?

First we work very closely with you until you are totally happy with the design, then the fun begins…

Step 1.) Create Film Positives
We make a Film Positive by printing each color of the design onto a piece of translucent film or paper. We use Software like Adobe Illustrator or Photoshop to break your image apart into a different piece of film for each color getting printed.


Step 2.) we make the screens
To transfer your image from the film positive to the screen, the film must be put in contact with an emulsion-coated screen and exposed to UV light for a controlled amount of time.  We will make 1 screen for each color being printed.

Step 3.) we develope and prepare the screens
We Develop the exposed screen with water. This removes the emulsion where the positive image was on your film, making a stencil that ink passes through when you print.  Then we let the screens dry off, and seal the edges and frame with special tape that makes cleaning up later easier.

Step 4.) Register the screens onto the press
We register screens by aligning the image on each screen to the image on each of the other screens.  Remember when we broke your design apart in step one?  This is the part of the process were we carefully put it back together.  Once all the screens are registered we are ready to put ink in the screens and start printing.

Step 5.) Print the shirts
Now the fun begins, as we load each shirt onto the press to print them one by one., each color at a time,  To get a bright, opaque image on dark colored garments, it is often necessary to flash cure or partially cure the ink and then print another layer on top. This print, flash-cure, print technique is also used for multi-color printing on dark garments.

Step 6.)  Dry the shirts
The last step is to fully cure the ink with a conveyor dryer. Getting the proper ink-cure is the key to a long lasting image.