What is screen printing and how does it work?

Today, we have a new experience for all who follow our blog. We present the first in a series of videos about our customization methods, namely screen printing.

Today, we're answering some of the most frequently asked questions about screen printing and how it works.


Hello friends, my name is Jorge Vieira and today I'm here to talk to you about textile printing.

We'll talk a bit about screen printing, how it works, if it's durable, and in what situations we should use it.

Sure, let's break it down into bullet points for clarity.

What type of image can we use with screen printing? Can we use any image?

The answer isn't simple but we'll try and clear it up a little. Screen printing is a fantastic type of printing, and it's one of our favorites to work with, but it's not very versatile.

Screen printing was born centuries before I or any of you were born. It is much older than computers, which means it is extremely analog. For me, an excellent comparison of screen printing would be like painting a wall. When painting a wall, we have a roller that we dip into paint and then apply to the wall. Screen printing is essentially the same thing in the sense that we have frames where we apply ink, and then a squeegee is passed over them, transferring the ink onto the T-shirt.

This means that screen printing only allows for solid images in 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 colors, or as many as we want, depending on the size of the machine.

In the 21st century, many people want to create shadows, gradients, and illustrations with multiple colors, which are not suitable for screen printing. We have many customers telling us they want a photographic reproduction but in screen printing. And why? "Because it's the one with the highest quality." Nothing against it, it's a fact, but it's not always possible.

I have a few examples of screen printing with me.

This is a 2 color screen print. It's a simple job.

What can we take away from this? What is white is white, what is black is black. Each color is a color, each shade is a shade. If the image has a different color or shade, it's considered a different color.

Just like on a wall, you can't create shades of gray and turn black into gray and white, or yellow into orange, here it's the same thing. Simple.

What about when we want more than one color? In this case we have a 3 color job. White, pink and dark pink. This is the limit of screen printing, where we play with some shades and can simulate some tones, but screen printing is exactly this, it's a simulation.

What about in printing quality? Screen printing beats any other printing method hands down. Screen printing has a very large durability. When you go to a store to buy clothes, most of the time they are screen printed. This is because you can wash the garment dozens of times without losing quality.

We jokingly say that with screen printing, the t-shirt disappears faster than the print. In some cases, it's actually a fact, depending on the t-shirt. When you're looking for a low price, even cheap, and if you're going for promotional t-shirts, they last less than the print.

In terms of touch and appearance, screen printing is quite interesting. We can divide the touch into two situations: light backgrounds and dark backgrounds.

You can barely feel it in light garments. This happens because we only give one hand of ink. If we have a white t-shirt, we only print the yellow or black or whichever ink is needed. The ink goes directly onto the t-shirt.

When we're talking about dark backgrounds, what happens? To achieve a certain shade, white is applied underneath. Underneath any color of printing, we will always have white to ensure the shade, otherwise the ink would be translucent and we would not be able to achieve the tone we want. This is across the entire industry, it's really a necessity.

First, we print the entire image in white, and only then does it receive the layer with the final color. Now, when we have two layers of ink, it's natural that the touch is different. We have a thick layer, which is the white, and then we have a thinner one, which is the final color. This causes the t-shirt to gain some texture.




We hope you like this new communication technique that we are introducing today. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask. We'll be happy to answer them in the upcoming video blogs.

estampagem têxtil


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