How to Make Screen Print Transfers Easily in 5 Methods

How to make screen print transfers needs some methods to do it. It requires a design and printing it onto a transfer paper with a variety of inks like plastisol, pigment, or dispersed dye.

The supplies and equipment can be diverse depending on the methods. So, here are a few screen print transfer methods to discover.

1. Plastisol Transfers

This method requires a piece of transfer paper and a heat press to transfer the plastisol ink into the design, like a t-shirt or other items. Here are a few steps to creating a complex design to follow:

  • First, follow the instructions on the package to mix up photo emulsion and the sensitizer in certain quantities. You will need a certain amount of water to add up to the mixture. This process is usually done in a dark room.
  • Pour the emulsion mixture across the bottom edge of the screen by putting it facing up.
  • Then, drag it in a smooth coating over the surface by using a squeegee. You have to repeat this process several times.
  • After that, dry the screen in a dark place for at least 8 hours.
  • Prepare your design for the stencil screen. You can create a screen and separate stencil for each color in the design.
  • Next, print the design onto a transparency or one sheet for each color layer.
  • Set up the light exposure and place it a foot away from the screen. Then, place the transparency upside down on the backside of the screen and put acrylic or glass over it.
  • Expose the screen by turning the light on for about 45 minutes to an hour.
  • Finally, spray cold water over the screen and let it dry before you transfer it with plastisol ink.
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2. Silk Screening or Screen Print

How to make screen print transfer is quite simple. You can create it by pressing ink through a stencil on the screen with the help of tools and transfer sheets. Here are some steps to do a screen print as follows:

  • You should make a mirrored design using a hand-cut stencil, a graphic design software program, and a Cricut.
  • It’s recommended to do screen print transfers in just one color.
  • After that, you can secure the stencil to the mesh screen. You’ll need a 150-thin thread mesh for transfer prints.
  • Then, try to dust the transfer paper or finished paper with adhesion power.
  • Next, start to spread the plastisol ink carefully over the stencil using an angle of 75⁰.
  • You can press the transfer paper below the screen or do it by hand and align the inked screen over the sheets carefully.
  • Last, you can remove the stencil and start to flash cure the transfer paper using 180 to 260⁰F.

3. DTF Transfers

DTF (Direct-to-film) is a method that applies to a sheet of transfer film with a mirrored design printed by using a DTF printer. Here are some steps to do DTG or DTF transfers:

  • First, prepare the DTF  film in rolls or sheets and cut it out into pieces that fit the printer.
  • Then, prepare the digital design. Print out the image and a white layer over it.
  • While the ink remains damp, you can sift hot melt adhesive powder over the design for the DTF transfers process.
  • Next, cure the ink and adhesive powder for two minutes using a heat press at 350⁰F.
  • Last, Set the heat press to 284⁰F to attach it to a fabric for 15 minutes. Let the film cool before peeling it away.
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4. Full-Color Transfers

How to make screen print transfers in a full-color method is a good option for a small business. All you need is a transfer paper and a sublimation printer. Besides, you can follow these steps to create full-color transfers:

  • First, prepare a digital design like a photo, lettering, etc. Make sure to flip it horizontally or mirror the image before the printing process.
  • Set up the sublimation transfer paper into the printer. Put the writing side facing down and the papery side facing up on the screen.
  • After that, you can print out the design. You can transfer it to fabric using a heat press.

5. Iron-On Transfers

This method is probably quite different from other types of screen print transfers. It is because you adhere the transfer permanently to the fabric using a heat adhesive on its backing.

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