This project came about because I wanted to create some t-shirts to be able to wear and represent my makerspace at Maker Faire Atlanta. I didn't want to pay the inflated prices online for just a few shirts, so I decided I could try to make my own screen prints. The process was relatively easy and turned out better than I expected.
In order to get started, I needed an image for the shirts. I took our makerspace logo and added a nifty maker-themed phrase, "What will you make today?", and our location and web site address. This yielded a nice yet simple shirt design. In order to print adult and youth sizes I decided to create two screens of different sizes. Trying to use one size for both just didn't look right in my samples. The main image is about 12 inches across for the adult sized shirts and about 9 inches across for the youth sized shirts. The design will be printed on the back of the shirts and I will also print a smaller image of the logo only, on the front breast pocket area of the shirt. The small logo is about 2.5 inches across.
In order to create the screens for printing, I needed frames. I took the sizes for the images and then added a few inches of buffer space around them to come up with the frame sizes. The adult size frame is 16"x16", the youth frame is 12"x12" and the small frame is 7"x7". This should give me enough room to work with the images on the frames later and still have room to tape off the sides to prevent bleed through.
The frames were constructed with some scrap wood from my shop. The wood for the larger frames was from 2x2 stock (1.5"x1.5" nominal). This yields a heavy, sturdy frame with plenty of lip to contain the ink when printing. After measuring and cutting the pieces, I glued and screwed them together. Now they are ready to have the screen applied.