STL Shirt Co. is one of the top t-shirt printing companies used by individuals, groups, and businesses in the Fargo, ND area. People in Fargo, ND and all across the country trust us for their complete screen printing and embroidery needs, as they have for more than 45 years. Our Fargo, ND t-shirt printing abilities and excellent customer service set us apart. You may be wondering about what we can do for you, our methods, or how to place your order. Ask us questions or begin your order by giving us a call 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 put in your t-shirt printing order to your favorite t-shirt printing screen print shop and, a few days later, you have fresh-pressed, neatly boxed t-shirts on your doorstep or waiting for you at the shop. If you want to describe it as magic, we won’t object. For those who have never experienced the process, 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 – Make your order.
You know you need some t-shirt printing done for your upcoming event, school group, sports team, or something else. You contact your shop to place the order and that is where the Fargo, ND t-shirt printing journey begins. When you order your shirts, you will have to choose and specify the:
- What color, brand, style, and material the shirts will be
- Ink colors or special effects
- What design will be printed
! STL Shirt Co. will offer guidance and help through every step of the t-shirt printing process. Our expert screen printing artists and designers are at your disposal. If you need help coming up with a killer logo or shirt design, work with our professional design team. If you want to know which shirt or colors will work best for your needs, we can help with that too.
STEP TWO – We make the screen
Once you decide on a design, we go about preparing the screen that will be used to print the design on your shirts. First, we print the design on a transparent sheet of film. Based on your desired end results, our t-shirt printing experts will select the best mesh screen to use in printing your shirts. To the screen, we apply a photo-sensitive substance called emulsion. We place the film with your design on it on the screen and we expose the screen to light. The design on the film blocks the light from reaching the coated screen in the shape of your design, 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.
Now we are ready for 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. Plastisol works well for screen printing due to its ability to withstand p washes, move with the flexibility of the fabric, and display vibrantly on a shirt of any color.
The screens we made are attached to a printing press, with each shirt pulled taut and placed on a plate below. We are very careful to line everything up precisely so we know that your design will end up in the right place on your t-shirt. We add ink on top of the screen and use a squeegee from end to end of the screen to apply and press the ink onto the shirt. We repeat this for every single t-shirt in your order, and if your design has several colors, we repeat it for each color on every shirt. It takes skill to get the ink precisely to where it shows up nicely and retains 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 they aren’t ready to go yet. 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 becomes permanent 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 easy 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 turn 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 nicely and hand them off to you. We can have your shirts or other items printed and packaged within just a handful of days. If you need it, ask us about shipping your order to you. For those last-minute situations when you need your t-shirts ready in a week or less, use our rush printing services.