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Using inferior equipment/techniques for distressed, "vintage" look

 
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Old May 2nd, 2007 May 2, 2007 11:13:54 PM -   #1 (permalink)
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Default Using inferior equipment/techniques for distressed, "vintage" look

Since there are SO many posts asking about getting a "distressed" or "vintage" look to their shirts, I thought I'd share what I've learned.

I've found that by using home-made screens, not thoroughly rinsing my screens, and just doing an all-around crappy job of spreading the dye, I've been able to get some great vintage looks on American Apparel tees. I got the idea from a google hit that turned up a method for do-it-yourselfers to screen print.

Basically, I went to the Salvation Army and picked up some picture frames for about 30˘ a piece. Then I got a piece of polyester bolting for $4.00 a yard (actually, I got it at 60% off, so it was less than that)- I went with a pretty loose weave (no actual meshcount, of course). Stretch the bolting over the picture frames with a staple gun, and you have a pretty crappy screen that works great for your vintage needs! I've also purposely not rinsed all of the emulsion out of some of the screens to give a faded/crackled effect. Obviously, this only works for smaller runs, since you can't really sync up very well and have to line up your prints by eye basically. For one color jobs (which many of the vintage looks use) it works great, though. If you put them together well, they can hold up for 250-350 prints. Oh yeah, I also use about 15% transparency base to give the shirts a washed-out look.

Not really useful for a crisp, "professional" look, but if you are wanting something that looks old and worn out, it works. The clarity is actually MUCH better than I had expected (and you can save a TON of money on screens!)

Last edited by lasttuesday; May 2nd, 2007 at 11:14 PM.. Reason: Formatting errors
 
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Old May 3rd, 2007 May 3, 2007 5:25:23 AM -   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Using inferior equipment/techniques for distressed, "vintage" look

Great little tidbit. Glad it worked out for you and thanks for sharing. You ought to post a pick of the materials/screens and shirt/print.
 
Old May 3rd, 2007 May 3, 2007 5:57:52 AM -   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Using inferior equipment/techniques for distressed, "vintage" look

Yea can you post a pic of the finished product?
 
 
Old June 15th, 2007 Jun 15, 2007 8:08:59 PM -   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Using inferior equipment/techniques for distressed, "vintage" look

Something I have toyed with with some pretty cool results...

Screen your image. DON'T FLASH. Give it about a minute to set. CAREFULLY lay a scrap tee over your design and flash(about half your normal). Peel the scrap tee off, then flash and cure like you normally would.
 






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