STL Shirt Co. is one of the top t-shirt printing companies used by individuals, groups, and businesses in the Laredo, TX area. For almost 50 years, members of the Laredo, TX community and beyond have counted on us for all of their screen printing and embroidery needs. Our Laredo, TX t-shirt printing abilities and excellent customer service set us apart. You may be wondering about what we can do for you, how we do it, or how to place your order. Ask us questions or begin your order by reaching us at 636-926-2777 or sending us a message at 636-299-0162 today.
How it Works
Custom t-shirt printing orders may 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. 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 – Place your order.
You’ve determined you need to have some t-shirt printing done for your upcoming occassion, school group, sports team, or some other use. You contact your shop to place the order and that is where the Laredo, TX t-shirt printing journey begins. When you place your shirt order, you will have to decide on the:
- Brand, cut, style, material, and color of the shirts
- Ink colors or special effects
- Design to be printed
“But I’m not a graphic designer,” you exclaim. Not to worry! STL Shirt Co. is here to offer advice and assurance through every step of the t-shirt printing process. Use our professional printers and designers. If you need help coming up with a killer logo or shirt design, rely on our professional design team. We can also help you select the right shirt and ink colors.
STEP TWO – We create the screen
After you have created your design, we go about preparing 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 unique parameters, 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. Light is blocked from reaching the screen wherever the design is on the film but the rest of the emulsion hardens in the light. This is how we create 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 typically 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 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, stretching each shirt on a plate below. Our t-shirt printing artists take great care to line everything up precisely so we know that your design will end up in the right place on your t-shirt. We apply ink on top of the screen and pass 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, and if your design has more than one color, we repeat it for each color on every shirt. It takes skill to get the ink just right to where it shows up nicely and keeps 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! We aren’t quite done, though. After the ink is applied, the ink has to cure. In other words, we have to turn the liquid ink into a solid so it becomes permanent on your t-shirts. To do this we have to apply heat to the ink. Ink curing is a science, and it’s easy to damage the shirt or the print with temperatures that are too high. You can rest assured that we have the curing process figured out, so you know your prints will turn out great.
STEP FIVE – You get your shirts!
After the ink is cured, it means that your t-shirts are officially printed! We fold them up nicely and pass them off to you. We will package them up and have your shirts or other printed items ready in only a few days. Ask us about having your order shipped to you. If you find your self in a tight spot and need your t-shirts ready in a week or less, use our rush printing services.