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Discussion Starter #1
First off, I would like to apologize if anything that I am about to ask is already posted somewhere in here. Seems easier to post a new thread and have someone answer you.

Anyway, for someone that is just starting and does not know too too much about the tshirt making business....what supplies would I need to start off with. Is there somewhere I can go that would help me get started.

What is the difference between Screen printing and pressing? I figured that I would start out with pressing first but, what would I need to make my own press designes as well as is there a machine that cuts letters?

Sorry to be the newbie with all the dumb questions! :)

Thank you all SO much for your help!

BurqueMike
 

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Seems easier to post a new thread and have someone answer you.
Sometimes that's easier for the poster :) But if the question has been answered many times, then it may take longer for an answer to be reposted. That's why we sometimes suggest that you use the search feature on the forums to find the answers you need and if you still can't find the answers, then you can post. It can also give you something to do while waiting for your questions to be answered :)

Anyway, for someone that is just starting and does not know too too much about the tshirt making business....what supplies would I need to start off with. Is there somewhere I can go that would help me get started.
It depends on what type of printing you want to do (and how much you want to do yourself).

You can outsource the printing (heat press or screen printing or direct to garment) OR you can buy the materials and equipment to do it yourself.

Heat press is basically using a big heated machine to press a design from transfer paper onto a t-shirt. The design on the transfer paper can be printed on your home printer or even printed on transfer paper by a screen printer (plastisol transfers).

Screen printing is pressing ink through an actual "screen" directly onto a garment. This is the "traditional" way of printing t-shirts. Sometimes called silk screening.

what would I need to make my own press designes as well as is there a machine that cuts letters?
An optical cutter can cut letters shapes, logos and all types of things:
http://www.t-shirtforums.com/showthread.php?t=5073
 

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Hi Mike,

Like Rodney said, you need to determine what type of materials (screenprint, heat press, or any combination) you want to use, then build your list out of what you need.

I use mainly vinyl materials and a cutter to make my shirts so I went to a Sign supplier and bought my equipment. They had a nice starter package for the curretr, software and other tools I needed.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I am looking to do all the work myself....no out-sourcing for me. I never even considered going to a sign store for the materials I needed. Thank you very much for the idea. Right now, I am just trying to get clarrification on the pressing vs. screen printing. I am thinking that I will be doing both if need be. I have read here though that they are pretty much the same now days....is this true? I just want to make sure that I have everythign I need to be successful at this.

LionsGate Studios is opening up a production lot here in New Mexico so I wa sthinking of trying to get a contract with them to provide shirts to them.

Again...thanks for the feedback guys! It's much appreciated!!!!

BurqueMike
 

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he pressing vs. screen printing. I am thinking that I will be doing both if need be. I have read here though that they are pretty much the same now days....is this true?
No, they are pretty different processes.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
So just from your experiences....which do you prefer....screen printing or pressing? Which do you find you selling most?
 

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So just from your experiences....which do you prefer....screen printing or pressing? Which do you find you selling most?
I'm an old school screen printing fan :)

That said, the more I've learned about quality printed transfers done with a professional quality heat press, the more impressed I've been.

The recent Printwear tradeshow I attended really opened my eyes to the possibilites of heat pressed garments.

As to which sells more, I would guess, VERY generally speaking that screen printed shirts sell more since it is what is normally used for the shirts you see in retail clothing stores. It's what the big sites like threadless/tshirthell use to print their designs.

But there are also high volume sites selling heat pressed designs, direct to garment printed designs (like cafepress.com and spreadshirt.com).

So I don't think it's necessarily the printing medium that will decide the sales volume.
 
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