PRINTING SMALL SPACES AND SMALL BUDGETS


If you've ever wanted to screenprint t-shirts or any type of apparel then you know this process can seem like it needs a college level course to figure out and a that sometimes going thru screenprinters when you don't have much money or any type of idea what you're doing can be taxing. First you to have to get the artwork print ready, make sure you meet their minimums, often the print placement is limited, and normally out of date clothing styles and cuts to print on and on top you're at the mercy of their production timeline. Then there comes the idea that you'll just print it yourself. Well that's gonna take another college level course to figure that out and a decent amount of investment of your time and money. Learning the in's and outs of printing can take some months to get right and really just doesn't interest most of us, we would rather spend more time creating, right ?. But the biggest issue that comes with printing yourself is that you need space, which a lot of us starting from the ground up just don't have. With what I'm about to explain -- all you need for this is a sturdy table top and about $335.

Ok so now that we've established the problem, you've got a lot of ideas to get out and we need a solution because you just got that stimulus pack and want to start printing your own ideas and concepts, or start a brand with all your drawings because the mass produced stuff that comes down the retail pipeline is wack and for the most part just wasteful. Or maybe you're an artist that wants to sell their artwork on a more accessible medium i.e t-shirts. When I was younger while working for an embroidery shop in Baton Rouge where I was introduced to the world of heat press. Which then wasn't nearly as advanced as it is now. I think we've all experienced those old heat transfer shirts where almost immediately they graphics are heavy, crack and peel very easily and the color/print options are very limited. Well it's changed quite a bit. Plastisol Screenprint Transfers are the new thing and they're amazing. They use the same process that traditional screenprinting does but applies the screenprint to the garment via heat press. A decent heat press machine with a surface area of 15"x15" will cost on average about $150-200 dollars. Here is a link to a good one to start off with.

So "what about the designs how to get them screenprinted onto the transfer paper?" Well there's a site that i've been using for about 4 years now that will print and ship them to you really fast a for a good price www.versatranz.com . For example, for about $185 I can print an average about 20 pages with as many 2 color graphics as I can fit on a 13"x19" space. Once they arrive you can just cut out the graphics as desired and place and print on the garment however you want.

ARTWORK SHEET SENT TO WWW.VERSATRANZ.COM

artwork sheet for fall 2018 "Outer Body" collection

(note: each individual graphic was then cut out of the printed sheet and placed on the garment as desired)

You can also get that $185 down to about $80 depending on the amount of full transfer sheets and number of colors in the design you order. They have this really neat and easy to use pricelist to determine how much you want to spend here. It's unreal how much I can get out of a sheet and if i'm smart about the design size and placements on the artwork sheets. Most of the time I can come out with about 150 prints with about 6-10 different graphics mixed in with that. If you've ever made an order to print shirts, you know that would be at least an $1800 order. This means you can get a heatpress machine and about 150 two color prints (broken up into at least 5 different graphics) for about $335. Pass that savings to the people so that more people can enjoy your stuff.

Here is a really good video breaking down how the process works. via www.versatranz.com

ARTWORK PAGE FROM THE "OUTER BODY" COLLECTION FALL 2018

(note: each individual graphic was then cut out of the printed sheet and placed on the garment as desired)

PRINTED USING VERSATRANZ SCREENPRINT HEAT TRANSFERS

Then of course then you have to purchase, make, or thrift the items you want to print on. It can be pretty fun sourcing materials. This may take some deep diving in the interweb but you can find some really cool stuff. I've definitely spent a lot of time searching for the best blank items. I'll make a list of some of my favorite spots to purchase blank apparel from soon. Another cool thing about the screenprint transfers is the placement freedom allows you switch up the variety of cool pieces you buy, sew yourself, find thrifting or whatever. Most times

I'm putting this here because I think collectively we can take some of the buying power away from the big brands and companies that suck money out of our community. I think there's no better time than now to use the time, creative energy and resources we have now to restructure how money is distributed in our creative community. Think about it... a big clothing brand from California can make a t-shirt and sell it in your city for about $30-$40 while local creatives with more heart and most the time bigger ideas can benefit from that dollar energy as well and the money stays in the community and circulates amongst us instead some warehouse in L.A. with a team of out of touch graphic designers and artists trying to just come up with some soulless shit just to meet a deadline for a check. Which in that business model of product Product PRODUCT it's fair they have to pay their team to make design it, pay to get it made, marketing and get it somewhere that's available to you. But I think it's about time we challenge that. With this we can take more control of printed goods that are sold in New Orleans or any city that benefits from tourism and/or fast fashion. It can come straight from you or some wholesale/retail situation that you have control over. Imagine walking down Bourbon or Decateur and instead of seeing the same corny New Orleans tees in all the shop windows you see some t-shirts with designs by local artists that don't make you cringe. Not only does the artist benefit but it gives the customers options and the satisfaction that they're adding on and supporting the community.

JUST AN IDEA!

Let's talk about this!


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