Key Specifications Of Silkscreen Printing

Silkscreen Printing has been in use for many decades. Along the way it has made vast improvements to its technology in terms of inks and Machine functionality in order to be able to provide more customized prints for customers. However, there are still a few limitations due to the complex process surrounding Silkscreen Printing.

An example of a Design which does not meet the printing Specs for Silkscreen ( Sublimation is the only method to print this design)

An example of a Design which does not meet the printing Specs for Silkscreen ( Sublimation is the only method to print this design)


Printing Position

From purchasing countless numbers of Apparels throughout our lifetime, most of us are familiar with the standard print positions on our own garments. The standard positions of prints would normally be :

  1. Across the Chest

  2. Left and Right Side Chest

  3. Across Upper Back

  4. Left or Right Sleeve

  5. Full Front Print

  6. Full Back Print

On top of that, it would be best to note that Silkscreen Printers generally require a space between 1.5 inch - 2.0 inch from the seams of the apparel in order to print an artwork (An example of what cant be printed with Silkscreen Printing is displayed in the image above) .This is done in order to avoid any uneven print when the frame of the screen in pressed on the seam of the shirt. Not to mention, printing on seams, cuffs , and collars are not able to be done due to the same problem.

However, for some Custom-made Garments, printers would be able to print from the seam as normally Printing would be done on the fabric before being sewn into the actual garment. In this case, it would be best to check with your local printers in regards to the artwork and position you are looking to print.


Print Size

Another important Specifications of Silkscreen Printing is the size of print which can be done using Silkscreen Printing. Normal Printers would generally have 4 different screen sizes which customers can pick from in terms of sizes:

  • A6 Print Size - 4.1Inch W X 5.8 Inch H ( 10.5 W X 14.8 H cm )

  • A5 Print Size - 5.5Inch W X 8.3inch H ( 14.8 W X 21 H cm )

  • A4 Print Size - 8.3 Inch W X 11.7 Inch H ( 21 W X 29.7 H cm )

  • A3 Print Size - 11.7 Inch W X 16.5 Inch H ( 29.7 W X 42 H cm )

Any prints that exceed the above size area may require an extra screen to be done up in order to meet the desired result of print. It would be best for designers to tailor their artwork within the provided size range in order to create the most affordable costing of prints.

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Artwork File

When it comes to printing high definition prints, it all comes down to the quality of the artwork file sent through. If low quality files are sent through which are pixelated and stretch, the print will be replicated once put onto the screen.

Files which are recommended are:

I) AI (Adobe Illustrator) File

ii) High Definition PDF File

iii) High Definition PNG File

iv) High Definition Photoshop File

Files not recommended are :

i) Low Definition JPEG File

iii) Low Definition PNG File

In order to ensure a smooth transition between the design team and your local printers, before sending the full artwork in an AI file it would be best to Create an outline on all Logo/Text prior to sending. This is done to ensure that all details of the artwork is locked in the file which will prevent any missing details.

All in all, if you looking to start your own clothing line or to create fun company shirts for the first time. These few tips on the specifications for printing would go a long way in helping you better understand the printing industry and avoid any unnecessary mistakes during the printing process. If you would require any further information, feel free to pick up the phone and give your local printer a call.