How To Print Glow In The Dark T-Shirts With Screen Printed Transfers
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Hey Friends! Dave here with Transfer Express and today, I want to show you the easiest way to print glow-in-the-dark designs on t-shirts.
Now just because I said easy, doesn’t mean we won’t have quality: we’re talking about using screen printed transfers today, which give you that same look, feel, and durability of a traditional screen print without all the hassles of inks, emulsion, squeegees and messy chemical cleanup- you get the idea.
So, using screen printed transfers all you need is a heat press. No other supplies are needed- no cutters or weeding, or any expensive software. I’ll show you how you can go from an idea or your design and order your own custom transfers that ship out to you as fast as one business day and apply in just 10 seconds. Did I mention the minimum quantities start at just six, too?! Yeah, so are you ready to dive in? Let’s glow!
Glow in the dark prints are perfect for events year round, not just the haunted hayrides and Halloween parties- everything from cosmic bowling, to golf, band merch, bar crawls and even fundraising.
Now, before we dive in to designing, ordering and printing our t-shirts, I want to cover a few tips to keep in mind when you’re planning a project for glow in the dark inks:
- First, it’s best to use dark navy or black t-shirts. The added contrast helps make your designs stand out better in the dark.
- The same goes for big designs, solid shapes, thick lines and bold fonts. Smaller areas and fine detail have a tendency to glow a little less, or at least they’re less noticeable in the dark.
- Small tiny prints like text only on a left chest or small logos aren’t recommended, as well as any distressing. The bolder the better.
Alright, with those little tips covered, let’s pop over to TransferExpress.com and get started!
Here, we’ll click on Order Transfers to open the Easy View online designer. All you need is a free Transfer Express account to get access to the online designer- no credit card number needed.
Here in Easy View you can upload your own artwork here using the upload button on the left hand side or here in the getting started menu. If you don’t have artwork, no problem! We’ve got a team of designers to help you work on a glow in the dark design. You can upload a napkin sketch and we’ll bring it to life.
What’s even cooler though- bringing it to life yourself here in real time in the online designer- even if you can't draw a stick figure, you can design here in the online designer.
For our examples today, Let’s say we need a design for a cosmic bowling night and some merchandise for a local planetarium- perfect projects for some glow-in-the-dark inks. Let’s start by searching for our bowling layout.
Here in the layouts tab, we’ve got a sports section, and even a whole selection of bowling layouts. We can browse until we find one we like. Layout QBW-39 looks perfect.
Next, with a few double-clicks, we can update our text to replace the placeholder text at the top and bottom, easily adjust our font over to something more retro, like Starlit, and then we can bring in some new text as the “bowl” text here isn’t editable. We can easily add new text, set it to Compacta, add an outline and change our ink colors in the edit menu on the left and bam- it’s really coming together.
Let’s edit the bowling pins to be solid fill, so we can swap on over our inks, too.
To add some nice little detail to customize this layout a little more, we can add some stars from the clipart library, and there we have it! A custom design that took just a couple minutes to create.
Once that’s set, let’s size it for a full front shirt at 11.25” wide- just enough to squeeze onto our gang sheet.
Now let’s toss another graphic here on our sheet. You can see this dotted line shows us the full area of our transfers.
This layout for the planetarium we can use the search feature and pull it up- we don't need to change too much here, we’ll just change the text. After sizing to 9” wide, we’re done.
Just to maximize the rest of the space here on our sheet, I want to throw some extra graphics here. A little skull and crossbones and then a little fun ghost guy sized for a cute minimalist left chest print for Halloween - we’ve got the extra space, so this printing is pretty much free.
Glow applies at 340 degrees for 10 seconds with a warm peel (pause about 5 seconds then peel).
I hope you guys are inspired and ready to light up your next print project with glow in the dark screen printed transfers.
Of course, here at Transfer Express we’re rolling out helpful tips for all apparel decorators every week, so be sure you’re subscribed to our YouTube channel to stay up to date on the new videos we’re dropping every single week! Until next time, I’m Dave - Happy pressing!