We often get calls asking if we can screen print shirts for a same day pick up. Honestly, we wish we could. Screen printing is a complicated process that takes a bit of time and here is why…
The art for each order is custom made for the person, school, business, church or organization that is requesting it. Custom art takes time to create. I mean, it is custom right?!
We have an artist here on site that goes over what you want on your shirts, what color shirts you are wanting, how many print locations, how many colors you are wanting to use and then puts it all together for you. Because of all that we have going on, we do not create any art while you wait. It can be a time consuming process and can take a while to get it put together.
After the art is done, a proof is put together and emailed to you for you to look over and make sure it looks the way you want it to look. Generally, this process can take a day or two depending on how quickly we get a response and how many changes may need to be made to the art.
Pre-Screen Printing Processes
Once the artwork has been finalized and approved, we have to print films. Films are what we use to create the screens for your custom order. We print one film for each color being used.
Once films have been printed everything goes into the dark room so we can create the screens. There is an individual screen created for each color being used in your artwork. Screens need to be burned, rinsed out, and then they need to dry. Living in a humid climate some days this process can take a bit longer than other days.
While artwork is being done, we often get the deposit for the garments. We do not keep any blank garment inventory here. We order as we need the items. Our building isn’t large enough to house and inventory blank items. Most apparel decorators work this way.
Once we get an okay on the work order and a deposit (we will email you a work order that shows all the details of our order and require an approval) we place the order for the blank items you are wanting decorated. We can get most blank garments in a day or two, but that all depends on what items you pick, when we receive the okay on the work order and get the deposit on your order.
Sometimes, however, it can take several days to get the blank garments here. If we can only get the items from a distributors warehouse that is several days shipping from our location or if UPS or FedEx misplace a box it can take anywhere from 5-7 days to get the blank items. We generally try to inform you if the items are a 5-7 day ship to allow you to either okay that time frame or to pick a different item. We cannot control what happens with UPS or FedEx and do our best to notify you if this becomes a problem.
We place orders on the print schedule based on artwork being finalized and approved, having an approved work order and deposit, and when the blank goods arrive here.
While all of this is going on, we are going through this same process with others and often other orders are already on the print schedule and in line to be printed when your order is being worked on.
Your order will be placed on the schedule once we have all of the moving parts in place and it is ready for production!!
Set Up Time
The time it takes to set up a print job on the screen printing press is determined by the number of colors that are in your artwork and the complexity of the art. Fine details can be a challenge when lining everything up.
This is where the films and burned screens come into the process. An order that has just one color takes very little set up time as long as the films were done correctly and the screens were burned without any problems. We simply line up the artwork on the press, print a test to make sure everything is good and start printing!
With each additional color being used there is added set up time. We have to line up each color correctly or the final image will not be correct. An order with 6 colors in the print can take several hours to set up before we can even print a test shirt. Lining up all those colors can take a lot of time!!
Order Pick Up
Because of all the different steps involved in printing your custom order, it generally take 7-10 business days from the time we get the artwork finalized and approved, a list of sizes and a work order approved, and half down, to get your final project done. This is a general timeline and can vary depending on how many other orders are already on the print schedule when your order is placed.
Our ultimate goal is to get you a final product that you will love and get it done in a timely fashion. If the day comes when we can do same day printing you will be the first to know!!