STL Shirt Co. is one of the top t-shirt printing companies used by individuals, families, and organizations in the Escondido, CA area. People in Escondido, CA and all across the country trust us for their complete screen printing and embroidery needs, as they have for more than 45 years. We have the Escondido, CA t-shirt printing abilities and customer service that will make every screen printing order you place a wonderful experience. We are sure you have more questions about our capabilities and services, our methods, or how to place your order. Have your questions answered or place 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 may come with an air of mystery. You give your order to your favorite screen printer and, a few days later, you have fresh-pressed, neatly boxed t-shirts on your doorstep or waiting for you at the shop. We wouldn’t blame you if you described it as magic. 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’ve decided you need to have some t-shirt printing done for some upcoming event, school group, sports team, or something else. You place the order and that is where the Escondido, CA t-shirt printing journey begins. When you order your shirts, you will have to decide on the:
- Brand, cut, style, material, and color of the shirts
- Ink type and color(s)
- The design you want printed
“But I’m not a graphic designer,” you exclaim. Not to worry! STL Shirt Co. is here to offer guidance and assurance through 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. Our experienced staff can advise you on the best shirt or combination of colors to use for your order.
STEP TWO – We prepare the screen
Once you decide on a design, we get to work on making the screen that allows us to get your design printed 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 for your order. To the screen, we apply a photo-sensitive substance called emulsion. That film we printed your design on is placed on the screen and we expose the screen 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 is how we create the stencil.
If you want a design using multiple colors, we repeat the process above, making a screen for each color in the design.
STEP THREE – We print.
Then, it is time to add the ink. T-shirt printing and other screen 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. That’s plastisol for you. 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.
We then secure the screens to a printing press, stretching each shirt on a plate below. We are very careful to line everything up precisely so that your design is oriented correctly on your t-shirt. We add ink on top of the screen and use a squeegee from end to end of the screen to smooth and press the ink onto the shirt. We repeat this for every single t-shirt we print. For designs with multiple colors, we repeat it for each color on every shirt. It takes skill to get the ink just right to where it stays vibrant and keeps the sharp lines from your original design. Lucky for you, our t-shirt printing team has mad skills.
STEP FOUR – The ink cures.
Now your awesome design is on your shirts! But there is still one more step. After the ink is applied, the ink has to cure. In other words, we have to turn the ink from a liquid into a solid so it stays 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 if you use the wrong temperature or cure it for the wrong length of time. 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! Next, we fold the shirts up neatly and pass them off to you. We will package them up and have your shirts or other printed items ready in just a handful of days. Ask us about having your order shipped to you. And if you are in a jam and need your t-shirts ready in a week or less, check out our rush printing services.