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My husband and I are going to try our hand at the t-shirt business...mainly for fun and to do something together. We are leaning toward silk screening, but to be honest, I have only done it once. What would you recommend for two people just starting out? Keeping in mind we want to design our own stuff and get it out there as soon as possible. Thanks for any other advice you could give (websites, stores to visit, etc...)
 

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There are lots of standard responses for this, amongst them: heat press is easier (and potentially cheaper), screen printing is better quality, other options (vinyl, plastisol transfers, DTG) also exist.

As well as that I'd add though: depending on what you want to do together, screen printing may be a lot better. If you're content to just be working on a common goal, one person presses shirts, one person does the accounting, etc. that's fine. If you want to actually print together, share creative decisions along several steps of the process, go through an actual process/experience together... screen printing is better for that.
 

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Just starting you may want to consider using a contract screen printer or custom heat transfers (plastisol screen printing on special heat release/seal paper done by several companies - ends up very similar to "regular" screen printing) and print digital transfers in house. This way your investment is smaller and if you see you will get enough screen printing then you can invest in all the equipment for that. That is how I started and still contract out big jobs or jobs that are more colors than I can print - big automatic shops can do large runs (400+ usually in my case) than I can.

Steve
 

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The thing about screen printers is based on their equipment and knowledge of what they do are limited by colors and designs. They have to figure cost of each color and the process for making the design that they are going to screening. I just took away a job from a screener because the art was limited to just 2 colors because it made the price too much for client. They showed me the print and asked what I could do to it to make more colorful. They also had sponsors names left off the print because they had so many different logos and colors. I told them I do heat transfer and I don't charge for art work, I don't charge per color and I beat the price. I made a sample using "iron all" paper showed it to them and got the job. Most important the sponsors were on the design which I added back in for them. So there it is. Not to say that this will work all the time. But I believe there is place for both. I think cost wise, and you screeners can correct me if I am wrong. it is cheaper to do transfers process.
 
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