Screen printing our t-shirts.
I’d like to elaborate a little bit on the process in case anyone else is considering doing the same. We had the screen made (to save money on screen and photo emulsion) by a local art store. They used one of their old, somewhat damaged screens to give us a break on the price. We then bought Speedball Opaque Fabric paint. It was around $8 for each 32 oz container of paint. We purchased gold, blue, red, and white. A squeegee added another $8 or so to our bill. (Careful, if you’re printing on black shirts you MUST buy opaque paint!) As you can see in the video, we used a weird screen printing technique. Instead of dragging the squeegee across the screen on the shirt, we would cover the stencil on the screen in a very thick layer of paint. This is because our cheaply made screen was uneven in how well it allowed paint to go through. The unevenness in the screen resulted in a lot of time wasted. We often had to hose down painted t-shirts to remove paint after a mistake had been made, dry them, iron them, and then try again. I suppose that the moral of the story is that if you make your own shirts, try not to save too much money on your screen!
PS: If anyone is wondering more about where we bought our equipment…
we bought our black t-shirts at Corporate Apparel Unlimited, our screen printing supplies at the Utrecht Art Supplies store in downtown DC, and the skull design was generously contributed by Marc Harkness.