T Shirt Screen Printing Season


Boy it’s hot outside, and that means… It’s T Shirt Screen Printing Season! This is the busiest time of the year for us. (Notice the lack of posts on our blog? Who has time to write? LOL). But I snuck this one in just to let you know what’s happening. We’re currently printing promotional t shirts for the US Open. Yes, that’s right. The biggest tennis event in the USA! We’re also doing our typical 24-hour rush turnaround for everyone this time of year. Even though we’re packed to the gills with work, we can always handle more, since we’re networked nationwide with facilities across the U.S.

But enough about us, how can we help you? This time of year is great for printing shirts to promote your company. Everyone’s wearing t-shirts this time of year through September, and that’s why everyone’s ordering now. Typical turnaround is two weeks, but of course we can do rush orders.

If you’re on a budget, you can do a white shirt with a one color imprint for less than $4.00 each at 72 units. $2.55 for 500 units. Those are very inexpensive promotional items that will last for at least several years with normal wear and tear. And people love to wear shirts featuring logos from companies they support. All you have to do is peek your head outside your door, and you’ll notice someone wearing a promotional t-shirt.

Striking while the iron is hot, literally, will be worth it at this time of year because the more people are wearing your shirt, the more promotion you’re getting. In the winter, everyone’s covered up, but now is the time to take advantage of what nature’s giving you.

The other thing to consider is the proliferation of cell phones in our society right now. People are literally taking pictures of cool t shirts they see, typing in phone #’s and visiting website URLs displayed on shirts. So putting your company information on shirts is always a great idea, but now, more than ever. This is only going to increase with the rise of social networking.

We’ve got everyone from food companies, to cosmetics, to industrials, to TV shows, to charities ordering shirts now because they know what they’re doing. Taking advantage of the peak season.

If you haven’t worked with us before, head over to our facebook page where we’re offering a cool $25 off your first order. That plus our already low-cost pricing makes this a no-brainer IMO. Can you tell I’m a big believer in t-shirt promotion? Absolutely, not just because I sell them, but because they really work.

When you see a cool t-shirt design, it makes you take notice. Sometimes you may even get a “cool t shirt” comment. Hopefully that comes from someone you’re attracted to if you’re single, but even if not, it’s obvious that it’s an attention-grabber, and isn’t that what advertising is all about?

So whether you get that comment from the next love of your life or someone you can’t wait to get away from, either way it shows you have good taste! 🙂

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How To Save On Custom Printed T Shirts

custom printed t shirts

What you’re now reading is the first in a series of articles where we’ll be suggesting some easy to learn tips on printing, otherwise known as “getting your money’s worth, avoiding hassle, and getting yourself the best possible custom printed t shirts, hats, caps, polos, jackets, sweatshirts, towels and more.”

That’s quite a bit to chew on, but put simply, we’ll just look at some great ideas for getting the most out of a custom apparel order.

In our first article, let’s take a look at how quantity can figure into the bottom line.

What is the minimum quantity on custom printed t shirts?

While I’ve been asked the question, “what’s the minimum quantity on custom printed t shirts required?”, that’s really not the best question.

You may laugh, “why of course you don’t want to hear that question because you won’t make much money.” Well, I’m not going to lie. That’s true, but it’s also not good from the point of view of a prospective client.

Why is that?

While the minimum may be one dozen, cost-wise it isn’t an effective way to spend a dollar. See, the price for 12 vs. 120 is often dollars less per shirt. For example, at a dozen, a white shirt with one color print might cost over $13 each, at 120 units, it’s about $3.25 each. That means for the price paid for ONE shirt can equal  the price paid for  FOUR. That’s a 75% savings in this example.

The savings can really be mind-blowing.

But it’s understood that sometimes there is no reason to order large quantities if the situation doesn’t call for it. If a print job is placed for a good-sized run of promotional t shirts, it may make a lot of sense, but what if printing for the office and there is only a dozen workers to outfit? Well, in that situation, it will cost more per unit. There isn’t much that can be done in terms of quantity price breaks. (We’ll get into other ways to save in coming posts though.) However, if you CAN order more quantity, you can see how much better pricing can be.

So what quantity do I need to get to in order to get a great price?

The answer to this question really depends on the item, but I would generally suggest six dozen as a decent starting point. At that quantity, average value for a budget.

In the example I just gave, even stretching quantity slightly to 24 shirts rather than 12 would allow saving close to 50%, as the cost for 24 is under $7.00 per unit.

Why? Because the money is in the setup. Once a job is running, our customer is only paying for a bit of ink and the garment, which can be relatively inexpensive. The setup of the job is the main cost. This applies to almost any type of printing, but is especially true in the case of garment printing.

Garment Quantities

When it comes to 50 to 500 to 5000 to 500,000 the answer is always the same. Larger quantities means more money that can be saved. On one hand, you could order a small quantity now and reorder again in a few months. But that scenario could end up costing double than what it would cost to order a larger quantity up front.

While a budget may not allow for this, if it is affordable, certainly in the long run, ordering a larger quantity can save over 75% in many cases. We usually quote larger quantities than clients ask us for as additional options to consider.

As can clearly be seen, the savings written in our quotes, it begins to make sense. It doesn’t matter if ordering custom printed t shirts, jackets, hats, sweatshirts, polos, or other apparel. It’s the same in every case, whether apparel may be screen printed t shirts, sweatshirts or embroidered jackets, polos, hats or caps.

Less Is More

The old saying “less is more” really applies. Less IS more per unit in terms of cost, and “more is less”, because ordering a larger quantity will help save money.

So whenever ordering custom printed t shirts or any type of printing, ask a custom printing company about larger quantity price breaks and compare. You might be surprised at the savings.

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Custom Printed T Shirts For Bands

custom printed t shirts for bands

Bands, just like other artists in the entertainment industry, come and go. In order to remain in the limelight, bands need to develop their aesthetics, protect and improve their image, produce amazing songs and music videos, constantly reinvent themselves, improve their music, stay professional, create good connections with people in the industry, appreciate their fans, and to be more successful, branch out in merchandising.

One of the best merchandising ideas for bands to consider is selling clothes such as custom printed t shirts bearing their logo, photographs of members, song lyrics, and other things that can be associated with the band. T shirts can both help the band’s promotion and increase their income.

Band members can design their own band shirt or ask help from a professional graphic artist for better designs. Bands can share with their fans a bit of themselves by selling t shirts with certain designs. For example, bands can print lyrics of their hit songs and sell them on customized shirts. Putting individual photographs of band members in t shirts will surely generate a big amount of money especially if the band has a large fan base. Fans around the country and worldwide will surely try their best to purchase a t shirt with the faces of their idols in it. Another good example for promoting the band through t shirts is featuring the garments in a music video or a concert performance. Bands can also hold promos such as giving away free t shirts for the first 50 or 100 people who buys a ticket for their concert or a new album. The band’s popularity will surely generate the sales of their merchandising. Putting the t shirts on the band’s websites or facebook pages will also increase the demand of the shirt. With the band members modelling their own merchandise, their fans will surely do anything just to have a piece related to their idols.

Custom printed t shirts to enhance image

Selling custom printed t shirts doesn’t just establish the success and popularity of a certain band, but can also enhance their image. Customized shirts can also be a form of advertising. For example, if a fan buys a band shirt and wears it to a school or a social gathering, his friends who are also fans of the band will surely admire the shirt and want to buy their own. In this modern age when cd sales are affected by online downloads and pirated material, one of the best ways a band can make more money is through selling merchandise such as t shirts and other clothing pieces.

Choosing the right customized shirts can also be important. Some bands may find that their fans prefer a brand of shirt, so picking the right brand of blanks can be important. Just as it is with schools and universities screen printing shirts, all factors need to be considered.

Keeping Custom Printed T Shirts Fresh

Bands not only need to be creative with their music. They need to be innovative and creative in their graphic artwork as well.  Artists need to use their imagination and artistic skills in order to keep offering new ideas to their fans. Selling customized t shirts will surely please die hard fans who will do anything to acquire a certain piece from their idols. Band members should always remember that in a fast changing world like the music industry, creativity is crucially needed in order to survive.



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The T Shirt Screen Printing Process, Part 2: T Shirt Printing Methods


This is a continuation of Part One of The T Shirt Screen Printing Process.

Nowadays, there are a number of ways one can transfer designs onto clothes, such as t shirt screen printing, digital printing, vinyl, and heat transfer. Screen printing is the oldest method of placing designs on cloth though, and people can use this technique to design their own shirts at home. These four shirt printing techniques each have their own advantages and disadvantages, which are discussed below.

Digital Printing

Digital printing is also known as direct-to-garment printing (DTG), and it is the most recent method used to transfer designs onto t-shirts. This is similar to printing images on paper, except that the images (and in some cases, text) are printed on the shirt. This technique is ideal for making t-shirts that have high resolution and/or detailed designs. Although this is arguably the quickest way to print designs onto t-shirts, the quality of the design tends to be poor when transferred onto black or other dark-colored t-shirts. The design is also prone to fading and cracking.

Vinyl Printing

Vinyl printing, on the other hand, is mostly used to print patterns on sports clothes, such as jerseys and varsity shirts. This technique uses special cutters that cut the letters and designs from a sheet of vinyl. The unused vinyl is removed, while a heat press is used to place the vinyl design onto the t-shirts. Vinyl printing is a cheap way to transfer patterns onto cloth, but it is not ideal for prints that have more than two colors. The size of the prints is also limited, and it cannot transfer complicated images or patterns.

Heat Transfer

Heat transfer requires a heat press machine that irons a print directly on a shirt. Many small t shirt printing businesses use this method, which lets one apply colored prints on shirts in five minutes. However, this technique doesn’t provide high quality prints; the design would even wash off after some time. Just like digital printing, t-shirt prints made through heat transfer tend to crack and fade.

T Shirt Screen Printing

This technique has been around since the Song Dynasty in China, and it involves the use of screens and stencils that help transfer the design on the t-shirt. Unlike the other procedures, t shirt screen printing takes longer to finish, but it is ideal for large orders. The design is first printed onto film, which is then used as the basis for the stencils. These stencils are placed on wooden frames, and are set directly on top of the shirt. Ink is then smoothened over the stencil using a fill blade, which helps shape the print.

The t shirt screen printing process is the best way to apply prints on t-shirts. The only disadvantages of this procedure are that it takes a long time to print and can be expensive (depending on the number of stencils that need to be prepared). However, this procedure is able to produce long-lasting and high quality prints, which makes it more cost effective than shirt designs produced using the other methods listed above.


The T Shirt Screen Printing Process, Part 2: T Shirt Printing Methods was written by L. Taylor

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The T Shirt Screen Printing Process, Part 1: Step-by-Step


Ever wondered how designs are permanently “printed” onto t-shirts? There are several techniques that are used to transfer various designs onto t-shirts, and the most common technique that is used is t shirt screen printing. This technique involves the use of stencils and woven mesh plates, which are placed on top of the cloth. This is also known as serigraphy and silkscreen, and was first used in China sometime during 960 A.D. While screen printing may sound complicated, but it is actually quite easy to do. Here are the steps.
1. Gather all the needed materials. The materials needed to screen print a t-shirt are the stencils, a wooden frame, the mesh cloth, a squeegee/fill blade, and the fabric paints.
2. Prepare and print the design. Most t shirt screen printing businesses allow customers to send the designs that they want to be screen printed through email. These designs are turned into composite copies and the customer checks the proofs that are sent to them by email. Several copies of the design are then printed onto film and sent for processing.
3. Process the film. Now that the design has been printed onto film, it is covered with photosensitive emulsion. Finally, it is exposed to metal halide light and washed.
4. Block the screen. More complicated designs – especially those that have a lot of colors – would need a handful of stencils (one for every color), which is why several copies of the design need to be printed in Step 2. Each stencil is placed in a single mesh frame and helps block the other areas of the cloth that don’t need to be filled with a certain color and/or design.
5. Tape and setup the screen. These stencils are taped onto the frame and set up on a special clamp, which prevents the frame from moving while the ink is applied onto the t-shirt.
6. “Print” the design. Once the ink has been poured into the frame, a squeegee is used to push the ink through the mesh and onto the cloth. The frame is removed and the ink is left to dry. The next stencil is placed after the ink has dried, and the process is repeated until the entire design has been filled out onto the shirt.
One may also follow these steps to do t shirt screen printing in their homes, but the process would be slightly different. Instead of processing the film, one can directly trace the design onto the mesh fabric and use latex paint to block certain areas, such as those that need a different color. The needed materials for doing t shirt screen printing at home would be the stencil of the design that one wants to transfer onto their t-shirts, an embroidery hoop, a transparent curtain or fabric with small holes, latex, watercolor, and black fabric paints, a sponge brush, and a t-shirt. Most of these materials may be bought from a local crafts store.
There it is: a step-by-step guide to t shirt screen printing. Now that you know how to use this method, starting your own t shirt screen printing business should me a snap! : )

This T Shirt Screen Printing article was written by L Taylor for Nova Custom T Shirt Printing. Read part two here.

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