There are two main methods used for screen printing onto garments. The method most commonly used
and best suited for a large variety of graphics is called 'Spot Colour' printing.
These examples below are all printed using the spot colour method. It’s a versatile method and can be adapted to suit most design requirements from basic to mutlicolour (or photographic representation).
This method of spot colour printing is particularly suited to the printing of branded promotional garments
or merchandise where colour identity (pantone specified) and uniformity must remain constant throughout
a diverse range of products.
There are of course a variety of different types of inks that can be used to create a ceratin look or to suit a particular kind of artwork. Metallics, Glow in the dark, Raised inks, Glitters and so on. These are all suitable for this kind of print method.
notes on spot colour printing onto dark garments
If you require a solid bright colour to print for example onto a black t-shirt, we would use a white base print. This base white layer is dried first, before the bright colour is printed on top. This process is to ensure the brightest and most opaque colour reproduction (otherwise impossible to do without a white base print)
4 colour process printing
Another method of screen printing used is called '4 Colour Process'. This method of printing is used mainly for photographic images and illustrations that consist of a wide range of colours, tones and graduations. 4 colour process is also the same method of printing by which all images in books and magazines are printed. The inks are translucent and merge together on a white backgrounds to reproduce all the hues and tones of the original. This type of printing will work best on white garments and will not really be suitable for coloured fabrics. Here is a simple example of how it works below.
other types of garment decoration
There are other types of garment decoration that are not actually inks, and that are perhaps more suited to
fashion printing rather than promotional design work. For example Foil prints (a metallic foil application)
and Flock prints (a fluffy fabric application). Particular finishes can also be applied to prints like soft feel
matt or high gloss.
It is best to ask us about your designs suitability for such applications if you are not familiar with this sort of thing.
If you have questions regarding printing your designs, please send us an example by e-mail.