STL Shirt Co. is one of the top t-shirt printing companies used by individuals, groups, and businesses in the Jacksonville, FL area. People in Jacksonville, FL and all across the country trust us for their complete screen printing and embroidery needs, as they have for more than 45 years. We are commited to making the Jacksonville, FL t-shirt printing process an enjoyable one for each and every customer we serve. You may be wondering about our capabilities and services, how we do it, or how to place your order. Have your questions answered or begin your order by calling 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 seem a bit mysterous. 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. One might go so far as to call it magic, but we aren’t one to toot our own horn. 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’ve decided you need some t-shirt printing done for some upcoming occassion, school group, sports team, or some other use. You contact your shop to place the order and the Jacksonville, FL t-shirt printing process is set into motion. When you place your shirt order, you will have to choose and specify 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 counsel and support during every step of the 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 make the screen
After you determine your design, we go about preparing the screen that allows us to get your design printed on your shirts. First, we print the design on a transparent sheet of film. Depending on the specifics of your order, our t-shirt printing experts will select the best mesh screen to use in printing your shirts. The screen is coated with a substance called emulsion, which is sensitive to light. 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 your design involves multiple ink 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. T-shirt printing and other screen printing usually uses a special ink called plastisol. Have you ever noticed how, on a printed shirt, you can feel the texture of the design, but it is still soft and flexible? What you are feeling is the plastisol ink. Plastisol is ideal for screen printing because it withstands washes, moves with the fabric material of your shirt, and shows up vibrantly on a shirt of any color.
The screens we made are attached to a printing press, stretching each shirt on a plate below. We work deliberately to line everything up exactly so that your design is oriented correctly on your t-shirt. We apply ink on top of the screen and pull a squeegee across the entire screen to apply and press the ink onto the shirt. We repeat this for every single t-shirt we print, and if your design has multiple colors, we repeat it for each color on every shirt. It takes skill to get the ink precisely so 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.
The ink is now on your shirts! But there is still one more step. The ink goes on as a thick liquid, but in order to stay on the shirt, it has to be cured. This means the ink must be transformed into a solid that will stay in place on your t-shirts. In order to make this happen we have to apply heat to the ink. Ink curing is a science, and it’s 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 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 nicely and pass 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. And if you are in a jam and need your t-shirts ready in a week or less, we even offer rush printing services.