Friday Favorites: True Opaque White

As a screenprinter, one of the trickiest things to do is print white ink on a dark fabric. Most regular white screenprinting inks are semi-transparent, which is fine for mixing with other colors and printing on lighter backgrounds. But for direct coverage on something like a black tee, a true opaque white ink is necessary. Oddly, this is a tad hard to find. The only fabric inks available at my local art supply store are Speedball brand. Speedball makes a wide variety of colors, so for the most part I have no complaints with this. They even make a series of opaque inks, but they are all metallic. What’s a girl to do when she wants to print solid light colors on dark fabrics without them being all sparkly metallic?

She goes to the Google, of course. And finds this:

Versatex SUPER Opaque White. If anything’s going to work, it’ll be this, I thought. So I ordered some, and tried it out this week. I went for the ultimate level of difficulty, to give it a true test – namely, plain white ink on the darkest of tees (black). And the very first print turned out awesome:

So, this is my go-to opaque white from now on. I’ll have to see how it does mixed with other colors, but so far I’m impressed. Bonus: it’s also for use on paper (Speedball has separate inks for fabric and paper), so whenever I get back around to printing on all those handmade paper sheets, it’ll come in handy there too. Yay all around!

In other screenprinting news: I’ve haven’t had a chance to give the photo emulsion method another try with the elephant screen yet. It’s been super rainy and cloudy all week, and the process needs a good amount of direct sunlight for exposure & drying. On the upside, since the new screen is on hold I’ve been printing a bunch with existing screens, so there will be a bunch of new things in the shop soon. You know, as soon as it’s nice enough outside to take product photos. *sigh* I know we need the rain and all, but it’s messing with my plans! Hopefully it clears up this weekend and I can get all of that taken care of.

Speaking of weekends (yay!), I’ve got a friend’s birthday brunch, a clothes swap, and a karaoke outing all in the works. And all on the same day (tomorrow). Yikes! But it should all be fun. I’ll just be a blob of not-wanting-to-do-anything on Sunday, haha.

What’ve you guys got planned this weekend?

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Business and Birthdays

Shirt for Deb's birthday

So, I printed up some business cards for DA, for general purposes and also to serve as tags/labels to send out with the shirts. Check it out: Also, I had printed up a shirt for my friend Deb, whose birthday celebration was yesterday. Since she has received (and loved) her gift, I can now post pics without ruining the surprise. See:

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Partial Prints

I’m experimenting with doing partial prints off of the same screen. Here, it’s isolated decorative elements from the Myst screen. This is the back/sleeve view. Should hit the shop tomorrow. Also: the design for the next screen is underway, stay tuned!  

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New design is a go! Myst

First attempt at printing with this screen came out off-center and patchy. Second attempt went much better – measured to center and practically pounded the ink through. Result: perfectly centered and solid. Should hit the store tomorrow or Wednesday. Yay! UPDATE: New Myst-inspired design is up in the shop as of July 26! Check it out: Etsy Shop.

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New Design Coming Soon!

Sketch of new design

  Here’s a quick pic of the next design to hit the DD line. This is another thing I’ve been doodling for years. I’m currently working on blocking out the screen, which – as you’d imagine from the intricate details – will take awhile. Should totally be worth it in coolness factor when done and printed, though!  

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