Ever wondered how you can create your own T-shirt designs or how you can make prints on fabrics? One of the easiest and most inexpensive ways to put patterns and prints on clothes is by using a silk screen. Here’s how you can learn the art of silk screening.
- Basics. First of all, you should know the mechanics behind silk screening. Essentially, a silk screen is composed of two layers, where one is literally made of a screen where liquids can easily pass. This will allow the paint to pass from one end of the screen to the cloth that is found on the other end. The other layer is a film that is made of plastic, which will prevent the paint from flowing completely. The film will delineate the shapes and the patterns that you are trying to create. Silk screens are great when you need to mass produce shirts on a budget.
- Research. Next, you will need to find out the various steps involved in creating a silk screen, as well as the various materials that you will need to use and the various techniques that are applied in silk screening. Generally, your best sources for learning about silk screening techniques are the Internet. There are plenty of resources on the Internet. Not only are there many websites that can offer you information on how to proceed with silk screening, but there are also various media that are offered on the Internet. For instance, you can read about silk screening, or you can listen to podcasts, or you can even watch video tutorials which are generally the easiest way to learn about silk screening using the Internet.
- The process. When you have done your research, the next step is to take the materials and prepare the silk screen itself. You will need a frame, where you will tack on the screen. Afterwards, take the print that you want to turn into a silk screen pattern, and put the layer of green film over it. Take a cutter and then incise the pattern out of the green film, making sure that you do this carefully, since any mistakes will become apparent when the silk screen is used. After you have cut out the pattern from the film, tack the film onto the screen and then use thinner to attach the film to the silk.
- Application. Once your silk screen is made, you can use it by taking a squeegee and then applying some paint on top of the silk screen, with the cloth on the bottom of the screen. Use the squeegee to run the paint over the silk screen. Make sure that you protect the inner layer of the short on the bottom, so that only one side of the shirt is silk screened. When adding colors, you can create a separate silk screen design for each particular color in the print.
With these steps, making and using the silk screens should be easy. With a little practice and patience, you should be able to master the art of cutting out the pattern from the film and applying paint, which are the most crucial steps in silk screening.