STL Shirt Co. is one of the best t-shirt printing companies serving individuals, families, and organizations in the Carlsbad, CA area. We have been serving the screen printing and embroidery needs of the people of Carlsbad, CA and throughout the country for over 45 years. We stand out as the t-shirt printing company of choice in the Carlsbad, CA area due to our commitment to quality and service to our customers. We are sure you be wondering about what we can do for you, how we do it, or how to place your order. Ask us questions or start your order by reaching us at 636-926-2777 or sending us a message at 636-299-0162 today.
How it Works
Placing a custom t-shirt printing order can seem a bit mysterous. You give your order to your favorite t-shirt printing screen print shop and receive a package filled with custom-designed, nicely folded t-shirts a few days later. One might go so far as to call it magic, but we aren’t one to toot our own horn. To the unfamiliar, t-shirt printing is a mysterious endeavor. Many of our t-shirt printing customers come to us for special occasions and events, so we understand the excitement that surrounds these shirts. Have you ever wondered about the journey that plain cotton tee has gone through to become the beauty you see hanging in your closet or reflected in the mirror today?
The T-Shirt Printing Process
STEP ONE – Place your order.
You know you want some t-shirt printing done for some upcoming event, school group, athletic team, or something else. You place the order and that is where the Carlsbad, CA t-shirt printing journey begins. When you place your shirt order, you will have to determine the:
- What color, brand, style, and material the shirts will be
- Ink colors or special effects
- Design to be printed
If this already feels overwhelming, don’t fret! STL Shirt Co. is here to offer advice and help during the entire t-shirt printing process. Our expert screen printing artists and designers are at your disposal. For assistance in creating the perfect logo or design work with our professional design team. We can also help you select the right shirt and ink colors.
STEP TWO – We prepare the screen
Once you have created your design, we get to work on preparing the screen that will be used to print the design on your shirts. The design is first printed on a transparent sheet of film. Based on your desired end results, our t-shirt printing staff will select the best mesh screen to use in printing your shirts. We then coat that screen with a substance called emulsion, which is sensitive to light. We place the film with your design on it on the screen and the screen is exposed to light. Light is blocked from reaching the screen wherever the design is on the film and the rest of the emulsion hardens in the light. This produces the stencil.
If your design involves multiple ink colors, we go through the same process for for each color in the design.
STEP THREE – We print.
Then, it is time to add the ink. Screen printing such as t-shirt printing usually uses a special ink called plastisol. You might have noticed that the prints on shirts are slightly textured, a little rubbery, but still smooth and flexible. What you are feeling is the plastisol ink. It is great due to its ability to withstand p washes, move with the flexibility of the fabric, and display vibrantly on a shirt of any color.
Next, we mount the prepared screens to a printing press, and each shirt is placed on a plate below. We work deliberately to line everything up exactly so we know that your design will end up in the right place on your t-shirt. We add ink onto the screen and use a squeegee from end to end of the screen to smooth and press the ink onto the shirt. This process is repeated for every single t-shirt in your order, and if your design has multiple colors, we repeat it for each color on every shirt. It takes skill to get the ink precisely to where it stays vibrant and retains the sharp lines in the original design. Lucky for you, our t-shirt printing team has mad skills.
STEP FOUR – The ink cures.
The ink is now on your shirts! But there is still one more step. Once the ink is applied as a viscous liquid, it must be cured. In other words, the ink must be transformed into a solid that will stay in place on your t-shirts. To make this happen we introduce the ink to heat. It takes research and trial and error to perfect the curing process. It is possible to damage the shirt or the print with temperatures that are too high. We know what we’re doing, though, so you know your prints will come out great.
STEP FIVE – You get your shirts!
Once the ink is cured, it means that your t-shirts are officially printed! We fold them up neatly and hand them off to you. We can have your shirts or other items printed and packaged within just a few days. Ask us about having your order shipped to you. For those last-minute situations when you need your t-shirts printed even faster, check out our rush printing services.