STL Shirt Co. is one of the top t-shirt printing companies used by individuals, groups, and businesses in the Modesto, CA area. We have been serving the screen printing and embroidery needs of the people of Modesto, CA and throughout the country for over 45 years. We are commited to making the Modesto, CA t-shirt printing process an enjoyable one for each and every customer we serve. 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 start 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 can have an enigmatic feel. You put in your t-shirt printing order to your favorite screen printer and receive a package filled with custom-designed, nicely folded t-shirts a few days later. 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 want to have some t-shirt printing done for some upcoming event, work group, athletic team, or something else. You place the order and that is where the Modesto, CA t-shirt printing journey begins. When you order your shirts, you will have to determine the:
- Brand, cut, style, material, and color of the shirts
- Ink colors or special effects
- What design will be printed
If this already feels overwhelming, don’t fret! STL Shirt Co. is here to offer advice and help through every step of the t-shirt printing process. Our professional screen printers and designers are available to help you. For assistance in creating the perfect logo or 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 create the screen
After you determine your design, we get to work on preparing the screen that will be used 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 experts 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 the screen is exposed 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 creates the stencil.
For designs with more than one color ink, 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 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? That’s plastisol for you. 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 any color t-shirt.
Next, we mount the prepared screens to a printing press, with each shirt pulled taut and placed on a plate below. Our t-shirt printing artists take great care to line everything up exactly so that your design is oriented correctly on your t-shirt. We add ink on top of the screen and pull 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 several colors, we repeat it for each color on every shirt. There is an art to applying the ink just right to where it looks bright 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.
Now your awesome design is on your shirts! But they aren’t ready to go yet. Once the ink is applied as a viscous liquid, it must be cured. This means we have to turn the liquid ink into a solid so it becomes permanent on your t-shirts. To do this 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, your t-shirts are officially printed! Next, we fold the shirts up nicely and pass the finished product off to you. We can have your shirts or other items printed and packaged within only a few 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.