WHAT EXACTLY IS SCREEN PRINTING?
First off, screen printing is one of the techniques we use here at The Bold Lion Label to print images on to fabric of any sort. Basically what screen printing is all about is pushing ink through usually a silk screen mesh fabric to make a design on fabric.
OK, SO HOW EXACTLY DOES AN IMAGE GET ONTO A SHIRT?
We all know that a mesh silk screen is fabric and is porous and will allow ink to be pushed through. To block ink from printing on undesirable places, the silk mesh is mesh is usually coated with a photo emulsion which is a type of hardener when exposed to light. When a silk mesh is coated with an emulsion, its usually impenetrable to inks.
WELL, HOW DO YOU GET THE IMAGE ON TO AN IMPENETRABLE PREPPED EMULSIFIED SILK SCREEN?
This is where the magic sorta happens. Remember the emulsion on the silk screen is photo sensitive and hardens when exposed to light as mentioned above. A silk screen printer must then have areas of the emulsified screen unexposed to light to get an image burned onto the screen. The way this is done of course is by blocking light from entering parts of a freshly coated emulsified screen.
To block areas of an emulsified screen, a silk screen printer usually prints a blackened image on to a transparent paper then places it on the emulsified screen. Light is unable to travel through the blackened areas of the print, leaving these ares of the screen unhardened to light. When this occurs, the screen printer can wash out the unhardened areas, thus creating an image on to the screen (a stencil at this point).
SO YOU HAVE THE IMAGE ONTO A STENCIL, HOW DO YOU GET THE IMAGE ONTO APPAREL?
This is the easy and fun part of silk screen printing. You get to see your image idea or work materialize onto fabric which is expressive and personal to people.
Once the image is burned onto a stencil, you line up the image to where you want it on the piece of apparel you’re printing on, then push int through it. The areas with the hardened emulsion will have no ink push through but the areas with the exposed mesh will. This is silk screen printing.
SCREEN PRINTING AN THE BOLD LION LABEL
Here at The Bold Lion Label, we use silk screen printing as one of the ways we provide customized apparel prints to our customers. The silk screen method is good for customers with a large quantity of t shirts, 1-6 colors in the design and also for bulk orders.