by Casey McKean April 22, 2024

Screen printed garments hold a special place in our wardrobes. Whether it's a t-shirt from a memorable event, a custom hoodie representing your business, or a tote bag from a fun concert, these items are not just pieces of clothing; they're keepsakes and statements. However, without proper care, the vibrant prints that make these garments unique can fade, crack, or peel, diminishing their value and appearance. To ensure your screen printed items remain in pristine condition, follow this comprehensive guide on how to care for them.

Understanding Screen Printing

Before diving into care instructions, it's helpful to understand what screen printing is. Screen printing involves pushing ink through a mesh stencil onto fabric. While this technique creates durable and vivid designs, the longevity of these prints also depends on how the garment is treated post-printing.

Washing Instructions

  • Turn It Inside Out: Washing your screen printed garments inside out protects the print from the abrasive action of the washer and other items in the load.
  • Use Cold Water: Always wash screen printed items in cold water. Hot water can cause the ink to break down and the garment to shrink, stressing the print.
  • Gentle Cycle Is Key: Use the gentle cycle to prevent the design from being stretched or stressed during the wash.
  • Mild Detergent: Opt for a mild detergent and avoid bleach or fabric softeners, which can degrade the print quality over time.

Drying Techniques

  • Air Dry When Possible: The best way to dry screen printed clothing is to air dry it. Lay flat or hang to prevent the design from stretching or the garment from shrinking.
  • Avoid High Heat: If you must use a dryer, opt for the lowest heat setting. High heat can cause the ink to crack or peel.

Ironing Screen Printed Items

  • Don’t Iron Directly: Never iron directly over a screen print. If ironing is necessary, turn the garment inside out or place a thin cloth over the design to protect it.
  • Low Heat: Use the lowest heat setting to avoid melting the screen print ink.

Storing Your Screen Printed Garments

  • Avoid Hangers for Heavy Garments: For heavy items like hoodies, fold rather than hang to prevent the print from stretching out of shape.
  • Keep Out of Direct Sunlight: Store your garments in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight, which can fade the colors over time.

Additional Tips

  • Spot Clean Carefully: If you need to remove a small stain, spot clean gently to avoid spreading the stain or damaging the print.
  • Preventative Care: Be mindful of where and how you wear your screen printed garments. Rough surfaces, Velcro, and sharp objects can snag or scratch the print.

Final Thoughts

Screen printed garments are more than just clothing; they're expressions of brand identity, mementos, and art. By following these care instructions, you can ensure that your favorite printed items remain vibrant and intact for years to come. Remember, a little extra care goes a long way in preserving the quality and longevity of your screen printed treasures.

Caring for screen printed garments is straightforward but requires attention to detail. With the right practices, you can maintain the quality and vibrancy of your screen printed items, making them last as cherished pieces in your collection.

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Casey McKean
Casey McKean