STL Shirt Co. is one of the top t-shirt printing companies serving individuals, groups, and organizations in the Winston-Salem, NC area. For almost 50 years, members of the Winston-Salem, NC community and beyond have counted on us for all of their screen printing and embroidery needs. Our Winston-Salem, NC t-shirt printing abilities and excellent customer service set us apart. We are sure you have more questions about our capabilities and services, how we do it, or how to place your order. Ask us questions or place 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 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. We wouldn’t blame you if you described it as magic. 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 decided you want to have some t-shirt printing done for some upcoming event, club, athletic team, or some other use. You place the order and that is where the Winston-Salem, NC t-shirt printing journey begins. 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)
- Design to be printed
“But I’m not a graphic designer,” you exclaim. Not to worry! STL Shirt Co. is here to offer guidance and help through 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 create the screen
Once you decide on a design, we go about making 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 for your order. To the screen, we apply 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, but the rest of the emulsion hardens in the light. This produces the stencil.
If you want a design using multiple colors, we go through the same process for for each color in the design.
STEP THREE – We print.
Now we are ready for 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? That’s plastisol for you. Plastisol is ideal 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.
We then secure the screens to a printing press, and each shirt is 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 onto 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. For designs with 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 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 that will stay in place on your t-shirts. In order 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 when you don’t use the correct temperature or amount of time. We know what we’re doing, though, so you know your prints will come 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 hand them off to you. We will package them up and have your shirts or other printed items ready in only a handful of 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.