STL Shirt Co. is one of the best t-shirt printing companies used by individuals, groups, and organizations in the Oklahoma City, OK area. For almost 50 years, members of the Oklahoma City, OK community and beyond have counted on us for all of their screen printing and embroidery needs. We stand out as the t-shirt printing company of choice in the Oklahoma City, OK area due to our commitment to quality and service to our customers. 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
Custom t-shirt printing orders may seem a bit mysterous. You give your 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 – Place your order.
You know you need to have some t-shirt printing done for some upcoming event, school group, sports team, or some other use. You place the order and that is where the Oklahoma City, OK t-shirt printing journey begins. When you place your shirt order, you will have to determine the:
- Brand, cut, style, material, and color of the shirts
- Ink colors or special effects
- Design to be printed
Don’t sweat it if you are intimidated by the thought of creating a design and making all these choices! STL Shirt Co. can give you advice and assurance through the entire t-shirt printing process. Use our professional printers and designers. 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 prepare the screen
Once you have created your design, we go about 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 unique parameters, our t-shirt printing staff will select the best mesh screen for your order. The screen is coated with 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 produces 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.
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 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.
We then secure the screens to a printing press, stretching each shirt on a plate below. We work deliberately to make sure everything is registered and lined up exactly 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 pass a squeegee across the entire 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 multiple colors, we repeat it for each color on every shirt. It takes skill to get the ink precisely so 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.
You can now see the design on your shirts! But they aren’t ready to go yet. Once the ink is applied as a viscous liquid, it must be cured. In other words, the ink must be transformed into a solid that will stay in place on your t-shirts. In order 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 with temperatures that are too high. 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 them up nicely and hand 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. For those last-minute situations when you need your t-shirts ready in a week or less, check out our rush printing services.