What is screen printing?
Screen printing is a printing process often used for apparel. Since so many steps are involved, it is typically best reserved for projects that will have multiple shirts printed.
The process basically breaks down to the steps below. :
- Art/Film prep
- A design is created digitally with each color separated into a separate layer.
- The design is printed onto a film (like a clear transparency) in all black ink. A separate film is printed for each color that will be printed onto the apparel.
- Screen prep
- A mesh screen is coated in emulsion (and dried in a dark cabinet).
- Each film with the design on it is burned onto a screen using with UV light.
- The screen is power-washed to remove the emulsion where the design was burned.
- The screen is then dried with a fan.
- Pre-Printing Prep
- Once dry, the screens are placed onto our manual printing press.
- Each screen's registration is set aka we make sure it is aligned, and if a multi-colored design requiring multiple screens are needed, this has to be very very precise! We use lasers to help with registration & alignment.
- Each screen is taped around the edges to ensure ink doesn't seep around the edges.
- Ink is applied onto each screen and a squeegee assigned for each screen.
- The platen (the board we put the apparel on for printing) is coated in adhesive and dried until it is tacky.
- The apparel is placed on the platen and positioned for printing.
- Ink is flooded across the screen using the squeegee to spread the ink across the design.
- The squeegee is pushed across the screen (some pull instead) at an angle with consistent pressure across the screen to push the ink through the mesh onto the shirt/apparel.
- If multiple colors are printed, often we "Flash" the shirt with heat to partially cure it before printing the next color.
- Once the design is printed on to the shirt, we carefully remove the shirt, and place it on our conveyer dryer to cure the shirt properly (depending on the ink, this is typically between 300-330° F.
- We then get another garment and repeat the printing process.
- We then count, fold and box up the garments.
Can you print on customer-provided apparel/items?
No, we only print on items sourced by us. There are lots of variables in printing and I cannot guarantee that the garments will be compatible with my inks, and have to account for a margin of error due to possible misprints.
Can I get the same design on both adult and youth size shirts?
Yes, however, there will be a screen fee of $15 per screen to resize the design.
Can you print a single shirt or a small run of shirts for me?
Yes, however, due to the nature of screen printing, single shirt printing is limited to 1 color and will have an increased price compared to an order of 20 shirts to cover labor.
How is your pricing determined?
Pricing is based on a few factors: shirt brand/style, number of print locations (front/back, etc), number of ink colors per print location, and labor.
I have an idea for a shirt, can you design it for me?
Sure, our art fees are $50 per hour.
What kind of art files should I provide to have a seamless transaction with Meister Made?
Please provide a vector file of your design. Any fonts should be set to "Create outlines" in illustrator. If you provide a raster file, there may be an art charge to either convert or recreate your file.
What is your turnaround time for orders?
Our turnaround time is typically 2 weeks AFTER payment is received in full. During covid-19, that timeframe could be delayed due to apparel manufacturing/shipping delays and will be communicated.
How is covid-19 impacting Meister Made?
Meister Made is taking covid protocols seriously as our household is high risk. We are vaccinated and boosted and wear masks. Pickup/Delivery will be handled outside and contactless. Covid-19 has caused manufacturing and shipping delays across the apparel industry. Some items may not be available or will have a longer shipping time.
What forms of payment does Meister Made accept?
Debit/Credit Card, Apple Pay, Google Pay, Zelle, Venmo, Cash,
What are your policies about transactions & payment?
Due to the custom nature of screen printing, all sales are final.
We require a full (100%) payment to be paid to Meister Made before we begin an order unless otherwise discussed in writing. There will be a 14 day turnaround once payment is received.