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Post image for Tips for getting a soft print on a dark shirt from Vudog [Submitted]

I just wanted to share some tips to people new on getting soft prints on dark shirts. On this “Born 2B Wild” shirt I used half tone underlay instead of solid under the red and light colors. A lot of people just use a solid underlay when not needed which just gives a plastic shield feel. Also I thinned out the white ink. On plastisol I tend to thin ink whenever possible. I also use a high mesh screen (305) to lay on a thinner layer whenever possible.This print was done with 5 screens on an automatic. When the print was done I heat pressed it. Be careful with the heat press to not go above the temp the print was cured at in the oven, that breaks down the ink and will shorten the print life. I use about 60 pounds of pressure. Heat pressing a shirt can make a big difference in softness. When I finished this shirt, the print was virtually undetectable and super soft to the touch. I washed this one a couple dozen times and its still like the day I printed it.

On this “Punk” shirt, because of its large size solid area, I decided to go with discharge ink. Discharge ink bleaches out the shirt dye and puts the new color in place. Its a pain in the ass to work with, especially on larger numbers. If you get a pin hole in the screen or slip with the ink, the shirt is wrecked cause you can’t zap off a bleached mark. But the end result is a print that you cannot feel, its awesome. On the other grey areas of this shirt I just used solid thinned white ink for the cheeks and levels of half tone for the ears and around the eyes. I only used 2 screen passes with this shirt on an automatic. Each screen is money, and the more you can reduce screens the better by making different colors with halftones. I didn’t need to heat press this one, you can’t feel the print at all after a wash.

Andy: I’ve made it pretty clear in the past that I don’t like the designs over at Vudog, but I do like Keith, the guy that runs the brand, and I appreciate him stopping by with a submission trying to help out other printers, even if some of it went over my head.


T-shirt News for March 23rd

by Andy on March 23, 2012

hunger games t-shirt

TeeFury have a Hunger Games shirt today.

Shirt.Woot have a delightful flower shirt.

I’m sure I’ve seen this design before but it’s nice to see it at RIPT.
[click to continue…]

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Sleepy Dan : Vinyl Thoughts Event Shirt Printing

by Sleepy Dan on March 19, 2012

An inspiring night requires an inspiring shirt design… The theme of this year’s Vinyl Thoughts event was Next Level. A retro video game tribute, so I had to create a shirt using one of my favorite games growing up, the classic Donkey Kong! With the help of Alexa Machine this shirt printing went perfect.

To line up a four color print on the press, you gotta tape one of the films to the pallet in the same spot you want all the prints. So you can line up all the screens in the press to that film, this is the basic registration of the print.

You will be able to see the film thru the negative space of the emulsified screen, and just gotta line them up perfectly and tighten the screws on the press…

Once all four screens are taped off on the back and loaded with the correct ink color, the printing begins!

This four station, six color manual press is perfect for two people to print at once. Just gotta print the colors in the correct order and communicate so no mistakes are made. Check out the final color printing

Then you get perfect prints like this! I wanted to design something with huge letters, so the levels of the Donkey Kong board were a perfect large surface area.

Hot off the press, I picked up the shirts and rushed over to the event where all the shirts sold out that night! I am reprinting some more shirts now, so they will be available on my Sleepy Dan web shop this week.

The two color back design showed off all the sponsors for this year’s event. The show was packed all night and has become such a hit for the up and coming Dallas vinyl arts culture.

I’m so proud to be part of this event and becoming a contributing vinyl designer. If you check out pics of the event and custom vinyls, I created a tribute to Mike Tyson’s Punch Out by creating two vinyl characters Bald Bull and King Hippo!


Screen printing at Print Club London

by Mr Four Fingers on February 25, 2012

Nylon mesh screens

For those of you you who know anything about placing designs onto fabric you will know that the most common if not popular and widespread way of transferring these images, is by screen printing.

Recently the duo that is Mr Four Fingers had an induction at Print Club London to learn more about the screen printing process. We chose the printing to paper induction to break us in easy as printing to fabric is more challenging.

We took some photographs of the day with our new idiot proof camera, so check out the images below for a peak ‘behind the scenes’ of the screen printing process. I recommend this induction (London) if you want to learn more about screen printing your own designs or maybe you just want to know what the process is capable of.

If you are interested in seeing more, as we took a kak load of photographs, you can check out the rest over at Mr Four Fingers website.




Sleepy Dan : Customized Hood Sweatie

by Sleepy Dan on January 29, 2012

Sleepy Dan hood sweaties released in December, I had to release one cut n sew project for the first year so you can be sure there will be some more customized designs for the upcoming years! I can not emphasize enough, process is the most important part of any project. The rugby style hoodie is a design just recently hitting trend so I had to make some comfortable enough to bear the Sleepy Dan brand! In my day job as an apparel designer, I have learned how to work with embroidery shops to create apparel patterns, but sometimes several of the finishing steps have to be done on your own to save on cost. That’s how I was able to make these hoodies so affordable.

Coming from the manufacturer, I had to make some custom modifications past adding the logo embroidery appliques and the new custom neck labels for outerwear… This hoodie has several exposed cover stitch seams, so you can easily see it’s custom made, but the excess seam fabric had to be trimmed up a little more to be finished.

After finishing, the logo embroidery appliques are hand stitched to the garment, then the size labels are machine stitched into the neck seam. What makes this hoodie so special is the herringbone cotton twill neck seam, rugby placket, and hood seam edge. The time invested to this project is longer than a t-shirt design, but the fan and blogger reviews of the hood sweatie are amazing for the first cut n sew design. Research and development are a key role in the process of a successful project, so don’t overlook your process at any stage! Hope you got one before they sold out…


threadbird discount

30 cents off per shirt may not sound like a huge amount, but who would turn down getting $30 off their next print run of 100 shirts at Threadbird?

Offer runs from now until the end of October, and no, you can’t place the order on November 1st and get the special offer “because your designer didn’t send over the file in time.” If you’re late, you’re late.


How to prepare your t-shirt design for printing

by Andy on September 28, 2011

how to prepare artwork for printers

Blake from YouDesignIt (who guest posts here from time to time) has written a guest post over at Design Juices explaining to people that are new to the t-shirt game how to go about preparing your file for the printers, which is something that may not be immediately obvious to everyone. It’s by no means an exhaustive guide, but it definitely sets you along your way.

3 Helpful Tips to Get Your T-Shirt Design Print Ready


monster press sample

I had the HYA tri-blends (still available in the HYA store) printed by Monster Press, and I have to say that I couldn’t really have been happier with the service, or with the final product I received. Good service, good printing, good price, that’s pretty much all you can hope for when you’re getting shirts printed. For the rest of the month they’re offering 15% off printing & delivery (garment cost remains the same, hardly surprising with the state of cotton prices at the moment), so e-mail them for a quote if you’ve got some printing that needs doing.

If you need convincing of their print quality (and don’t want to buy one of my lovely shirts) they’ve also just released a sample t-shirt designed by Luke Drozd that is a mere £5 + shipping, that you can see above.


Need some cool custom t-shirts?

AMB3R designs and prints awesome custom shirts, and if you include the coupon code “hideyourarms” on your project of 50 shirts or more, we will give you $50 off!

Ready to get started? Then go to and click “start a t-shirt,” and we will get in touch with you to chat about your t-shirt needs!

[Andy: These guys aren’t a ‘custom tee’ company as I would usually think of them (Spreadshirt, Zazzle, Cafepress), they seem to be more of a normal printing company that also offer design services, they’ve got some impressive clients on their roster (including Johnny Cupcakes), so whilst their website seems a little idiosyncratic (it took me a while to work out what they actually do), chances are they’re pretty good at what they do. Has anyone heard of Amb3r before?]

This post was submitted by Mike Wall.



Storenvy are one of the more popular printers out there for indie brands, because they offer good service, at a good price, and they understand what folks want. I used them for the HYA tee and I don’t really have any complaints (there were a couple of slight misprints, but that is just part of the process). Storenvy is also home to a lot of brand storefronts, except they aren’t a fulfillment service (printing and posting the tees to customers for you), and from now on those two aspects of the business really are separate, as Storenvy is now the storefront side, and Threadbird will be handling all the printing dutries.

In reality, nothing has really changed, it’s the same products, service and staff (with a couple of extra hires), it’s just got a new label now. To celebrate the name change theyre offering 70 cents off each shirt you get printed, which may not sound like a huge amount, but if you get a few hundred shirts printed it’s a nice chunk of change that you can spend on something else. The offer is available until the end of the month.

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Storenvy have a good rep for printing tees within the indie community, by which I mean that people on Emptees rarely bitch about them, and from what I can tell their storefront hosting service is also held in high regard. A couple of days ago they released a new version of their site which aims to help those stores owners make more sales, and help make it easier for t-shirt buyers to find shirts across their network of stores. To put it basically, you can search what they sell, it’s that simple, I’d add more words to this sentence but they’d be superfluous.

Search isn’t the only new feature to be included in the new Storenvy site, they’ve also introduced a concept called ‘Markets‘ which groups together stores that have something in common (such as fine art, eco-friendly, or urban wear), it’s an idea I like and thin that as it evolves it would work well for people trying to discover new companies in the same vein as ones that they already like. The forum is likely to be a useful hub for store owners, though as you would imagine so soon after launch things are still a bit quiet around there.

In the past if someone asked me about a third-party storefront to run their brand from I would have immediately said Big Cartel, but Storenvy could be an option worth looking at for a lot of budding tee-preneurs.


Cotton Filter: 270508

by Andy on May 27, 2008

I bet you thought you’d never see the cotton filter again!

Shirt.Woot: As spotted by Jay, Shirt.Woot is now shipping to 45 countries beyond the US & Canadian borders, and are doing so for the low price of $5 too.

FFee Clothing: In other shipping related matters, FFee clothing are offering free shipping on all orders (even international ones) until the end of May.

T-Shirt Magazine: This site claims to be the only magazine about T-shirts whether online and off, which is… wrong (and Tcritic‘s new look is farily magazine-like too), but lets not hold that against them, since there is some decent content on the site.

laFraise: They can now print up to 12 colours on a shirt rather than the 8 that they had before, which is an increase of 50%… hurrah! To celebrate, they’re making up a test design (only 250 to be produced) called ‘Let’s Get Ready To Rainbow’, which I think is a pretty splendid phrase.

Threadless: If you’ve ever wanted to know, these are the people that do the screenprinting for Threadless (the art prints, not the tees). Also, here’s another magazine article fawning over Threadless and their business model, there’s pretty much nothing new in the article, but it does provide a decent overview.

Pete Wentz: Apparently he likes Local Celebrity clothing so much that he asked to take some after wearing it for a Fall Out Boy video shoot. Presumably he’s trying to save some cash for when Ashlee pops that baby out.

Creative Directory 101: A directory of sites for creative people, obviously, this will be helpful for people trying to get themselves set up in the tee biz (especially if you’re in the UK). [Disclosure: I’m still working on a HYA Directory that would crush compete with this site]

Pikiware: Mashable described this site as being the “WordPress of Online Tshirts”, and since I love WordPress and t-shirts I figured it was worth a peep, especially since the last time I found out about a t-shirt store from Mashable it was Design By Humans. From what I can tell, pikiware is basically a storefront system for people that print their own products, so that you can make your own Cafepress or Spreadshirt kind of business, though I have been known to make mistakes in the past, so I could easily be wrong. I don’t really see this being of huge interest to “HYA kinda people”, but since it does represent something kinda new in the tee world then I thought it was worth a mention.

Instructables: Here’s an instructable about photo-emulsion screenprinting, which I assume would be helpful for those of you that would like to print your own tees but don’t know how.

HipHipUK Discusses Crowdsourcing: This post seems to have become rather business-y, and this is the most business-y of the lot. Adam wrote an article a few weeks ago called “Which risks and problems will companies, that run Crowdsourcing business models, face in the future? Amongst other things” that I think should probably be a must read for any of you out there that are running a design competition or thinking about running a design competition.

Photojojo: They’ve got an article all about shooting pictures for use on eBay, but a lot of the techniques can also be applied to taking products shots for your tees and hoodies. There’s also a video on the same subject at Etsy if you don’t feel like reading.

Dadawan: They’re selling cool cushions now!


Lists: Ten Great Videos About T-shirts

by Andy on April 8, 2008

After seeing rather a lot of sub-par t-shirt videos being posted to YouTube (and therefore my new baby, TeeBurst), I felt that I needed to raise my spirits by finding some videos that were actually worth a few minutes of your time.

1. Justice – D.A.N.C.E: I thought I’d kick off the list with one of my favourite French DJ duos of the moment, Justice, and their amazing music video for D.A.N.C.E which features loads of clever CGI’d tees. I’m amazed that no one has ever released these designs as I’m sure they’d be popular with more than just fans of Justice.

2. The Most T-shirts Ever Worn At Once: There are two videos on YouTube claiming to hold the record for most t-shirts ever worn, one posted by an American radio station, and this one posted by the Guinness Book of World Records… I know who I’m going with (that and the 155 tees to 244 tees discrepancy).

3. How To Fold A T-Shirt: I think this video is proof that I am so manly, I actually need to watch a video to teach me how to fold a shirt! In reality I actually watched it several times before nailing the technique completely, and it has turned into a great space saver for my ever-growing collection of t-shirts.

4. How to Screenprint T-Shirts by Make Magazine: There are lots of tutorials out there showing you how to make your own t-shirts, but Make‘s video (with some help from Etsy) is a bit more professional than most out there.

5. How To Stencil Your Own T-Shirts: If you want to design your own tees but aren’t ready to take the leap into screenprinting, the Threadbanger crew have you well covered with this great instructional video about how to stencil your own t-shirts.

6. The human flipbook: Already HYA featured, but still worth another viewing. How this is promotion for a sandwich shop I don’t know, but it is cool!

Lip Dub – Flagpole Sitta by Harvey Danger from amandalynferri on Vimeo.

7. Connected Ventures Lip Dub: I’m stretching a bit with this one, but I couldn’t really have a list of videos without putting in a lip dub, could I? Here, the Connected Ventures crew (the people behind BustedTees and defunker & some other non-tee related sites) lip dub to HarveyDanger’s “Flagpole Sitta,” and trust me, it’s awesome, and kinda makes me wish that I worked in a cool office.

8. Spreadshirt’s Hands Per Piece: A very, very cool video from the Spreadshirt team showing just how many people are involved with the production of a tee from Spreadshirt. Its reassuring to see how much effort goes into the creation of one of their garments, considering when people usually think of POD services they imagine them to be a rather soulless process.

9. T-Shirt Folding Machine: If #3 was too much effort for you then this t-shirt folding machine might be for you (providing you aren’t too lazy to make one). This is a pretty cool promo by All-Tribes too.

10. Origami T-Shirt: Here’s a video showing you how to make an origami t-shirt out of a £5 note. May I suggest that you try this with a regular piece of paper first?Do you know of any other cool t-shirt related videos? Post ‘em if you got ‘em.

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