Textile screen-printing has been our area of expertise for many years. We love this printing technique that lends itself extremely well to almost all designs and practically any type of fabric. At the same time it is a sustainable technique: the print is hardwearing and therefore long lasting. That is why screen-printing is often the best choice of technique for printing textiles.
The process of screen-printing
For screen-printing we use a screen-printing screen. This is a metal frame with a mesh stretched over it. The mesh is covered in a photosensitive emulsion upon which we print the design that we want to screen-print. We then expose the printed screen: the emulsion hardens, except where the print is. We rinse that part with water, thereby creating the template that we are going to screen-print. When the design is made up of multiple colors, we use one screen per color to compose the entire image during the printing process.
An artisanal process that has been in existence for years. The process is not particularly complicated, but it requires knowledge of the various materials that we work with: the fabric, the ink, the way in which they react to each other. We will translate your design to the graphic practice. Solid workmanship and experience are crucial. Luckily we have plenty of both on offer!
The most common positions we print are the front and back of the garment, the left or right side of the chest, the sleeves or the inside of the neck. But if you prefer a different positioning, we will discuss this with you to see what works.
Ink we use for screen-printing
In almost all cases we do our screen-printing with plastisol ink: plastisol has good color opacity and offers the strongest print. Mainly for that reason it is a sustainable choice. Plastisol ink sometimes still suffers a bad reputation (because it is plastic), but that really is a thing of the past: nowadays the ink no longer contains solvents. And because it keeps well and can be re-used, there is barely any waste during the printing process. That is an important argument for sustainability, in our opinion.
But of course, there are also good reasons for choosing water-based ink. And so, that is also one of our options. Just like when you are interested in a specific effect that requires a specific type of ink: a print in silver, gold, puff, fluorescent or ‘glow-in-the-dark’, for example.
In order to determine which colors we will use for the design you bring to us, we use Pantone. The Pantone color chart helps us decide which Pantone color to use and based on that choice, we will mix the ink by hand for you.
Textiles suitable for screen-printing
Most textiles are suitable for screen-printing. The choice for T-shirts, sweaters or polo shirts is an obvious one. Nevertheless, there are products that are less suited to direct printing. Examples of this are fleece clothing or caps and beanies. But also certain bath towels or products with a loose lining (something jackets often have, for example). In these cases embroidery or transfers are a better option. And so that is what we will advise.
Prices for screen-printing
Screen-printing offers many possibilities regarding price: because you pay per color, you can make the end product as cheap or as expensive as you like. And because the printing price goes down as the quantity goes up, a multi-colored design can still be highly affordable. Furthermore the choice of clothing is an important factor in determining the price. Are you opting for a promotional garment? Or are you looking for a product that must meet more requirements, such as a higher production quality or a more fashionable look? The choice is yours.
Would you like to find out what the possibilities are for screen-printing? Please contact us or request a quote.
You could also make an appointment with us to visit our showroom. We would love to show you examples of our products, so that you can actually feel them or even try them on. Together we can then make a choice that best matches your wishes and requirements.