QUESTIONS

Do you have questions about screen printing? We’ve compiled a list of our most commonly asked questions. If you don’t find your answers here, please do not hesitate to call us.

Q: I want t-shirts! How much are they?

A: Since these are custom products, pricing varies depending on what kind of garment you are getting, what you are getting on them (how many colors or locations of artwork), and how many you are ordering. Submit a quote request and we will happily send you a customized quote for your project.

Q: I only want one (or a few) custom t-shirts.  What are my options?

A: Though our normal minimum is 5 pieces, we can, in many cases, find an affordable method to solve your problem.  For example, we often make transfers for small jobs - an individual shirt would cost $31 if we were to use this method.

Q: I know what I want, but I’m no artist. Can you help me create a design?

A: Absolutely. We have a team of talented artists here to make your t-shirt dreams a reality.

Q: We're in a hurry!  What is your turnaround time?

A: We work very hard to accommodate our customer's rush requests.  Normal production time is 5-7 business days.  In some cases, we can do an order placed on Monday or Tuesday by that Friday.  This, however, is dependent on our production schedule.  If you have a short timeline, please contact us by telephone as soon as possible.  For rush jobs (3 business days or less), you will be charged a $50 rush fee.  

Please remember that we will need all of your order information - shirt sizes/quantities, shirt color, art information, and payment of a deposit.  It is also critical that you be available for invoice and art approvals and for any questions that may come up.  Unanswered emails or telephone calls will greatly hamper the timely completion of your project.

For the fastest service possible, please use our website t-shirt designer and our stock art.

Turnaround time for vinyl or heat press orders is generally 2-3 business days. Depending on how complicated the order is, how many garments, and how busy the shop is, we may have to charge a $15 rush fee if the order is needed sooner than that.

Q: Can I see a design mockup before I place an order?

A: A design mockup is always provided for all orders.  You can see a mockup before actually placing your order with a deposit of $25.  This money will be credited to your final invoice, but is not refundable if you do not place an order with us. 

Turnaround time for a mockup is at least 3-4 business days.

Q: What are the differences between Hanes and Gildan?

A: Practically speaking, the basic t-shirts of all of the major shirt brands are very similar.  In some cases, one brand may have a color that you prefer, but otherwise it is simply a personal preference.  There is, however, one difference between these two brands: the Gildan youth shirts are at least one size larger than the (more normally-sized) Hanes products.

Q: What is the difference between 50/50 and 100% cotton fabrics?

A: Generally, 50/50 fabrics are lighter in weight. They also tend to wrinkle less and are somewhat more dye-fast. The polyester is also a stronger yarn and produces a more durable fabric. Both fabrics will undergo some shrinkage when washed.

Q: How do the shirts run, size-wise?

A: We use only name brand products that most people are familiar with. You may well already own some of the same types of shirts that you are thinking of ordering. Of course everyone has his or her own ideas about what is "big" or what is "small.”  To minimize the possibility of ordering the wrong size, we have samples available for inspection in our office, and can ship samples to those out of our immediate area. 

We strongly encourage those ordering women's styles to see size samples before placing an order.  Women's styles are smaller and cut differently than the standard t-shirt.  We do not assume any responsibility for sizing difficulties after an order has been completed.

Q: How much shrinkage can I expect?

A: All of the garments that we use are high quality name brands manufactured to keep shrinkage to a minimum. However, you should plan on some shrinkage during the first few times through the laundry. Typically, garments will shrink approximately 5% across the shoulders and 7% in length. For a Large or XL garment, this is about 1-1.25” in width and 1.5-2” in the overall length.

Q: Can I count on all colors/products that I want to actually be available?

A: If you are ordering basic t-shirts in a basic color, the answer is most likely yes. Unfortunately, though, not all colors or sizes of all products are available all of the time.  Colors and products sometimes get discontinued or are temporarily out of stock. Please have an alternate in mind.

Q: Can I order several different colors of shirts for my design, or will it cost more?

A: As long as your artwork stays exactly the same (same color, same location, same size, same setup), you can put it on any garment, and any color garment, you’d like without incurring any extra fees. If you change the color of your logo, we will charge a $10 ink change charge per screen. If you want to change the size of the design, we have to make extra screens at the new size. Each screen (each color, etc) would be an extra $35. If you want to change the location of the design (say, from a Full Front to a Left Crest), or if you want to change from a t-shirt to a hat, the two designs would then be considered separate orders.

Q: Can I supply my own garments?

A: Yes, you can bring in your own garments. For screen printing, you are charged $35 per screen and $2 per imprint of that screen on the garment. Each color in each location of the design is a separate screen. Unless you have a good source for really cheap t-shirts, it’s usually less expensive to order your shirts with us. For embroidery, there is a $35 embroidery setup fee if we have never embroidered your design before. If we have, your price per garment depends on quantity.

Q: How large can you make the design?

A: Our normal print area is 13" wide by 15" tall.  In some cases, we may be able to print a larger area.  Please contact us with details about your art and the garments you would like to use.

Q:  What kind of art can do I need to provide?

A:  We have great graphic artists on staff and our pricing includes art creation (except for extreme situations).  All we really need are your ideas, a sketch or description.  If you can provide an electronic version of your art, please do. 

Q: Are children’s sizes available?

A: Please check our products page or one of our printed catalogs for a specific product.  Most basic styles have an associated children's sized product, though usually with a more limited color selection.  Keep in mind that youth sized garments may require that your art be reduced to fit and that this would incur additional costs if you are ordering both adult and youth sized items.  For the basic t-shirt, an adult sized piece of art can generally be printed on large or medium youth sizes.

Q:  I have an electronic version of my art.  What kind of files can you use?

A:  We would prefer Adobe Illustrator files or other vector files or PDFs.  We can also use Adobe Photoshop files.  If you send JPEGs or other types of files please save at 150 dpi (or larger) at the art's full size, and our artists will determine if the file is usable.  If you are able to send Adobe Illustrator files, please back save to version 3.

Q: What does color separation mean?

A: If you don’t know, then you should probably consult with a graphic artist or send the best art that you have to our artists.

Q: How closely can you match your ink to the color I want?

A: We can happily provide you with a color card that shows our 30 standard ink colors. This is also available on our website. In most cases, you will probably find a color that is close to what you have in mind. In the event that our standard ink colors do not come close enough, we can do a simulation of over 1000 PMS (Pantone Matching System) colors. There is a $15 charge for each custom PMS color we mix.

Q:  Can you do full color printing?

A:  Full color printing, often referred to as 4-color process printing, is a way of reproducing a wide range of colors using only 4 or 5 inks.  This is a great way of reproducing photographic images on your shirt.  This is a more complicated art and printing process, so please allow extra time for any 4-color process orders.

Q: We are concerned about the accuracy of the color samples on our monitor. Is there any way we can get actual fabric or ink swatches?

A: Yes. Contact us to get swatches of the garments or ink colors you are interested in.

Q: Can I see a sample shirt before my full order is printed?

A: All of our customers receive a color mockup of their design before any order is printed.  Generally, this is sufficient for normal purposes.  For those who would like to see an actual printed shirt you have these options:  

  • If you are a local customer, we can arrange a time for you to come in and view the first print.
  • If you cannot come to our office, we can email a picture of the first print.   In either case, it is essential that you be available as soon as the first print is made so that our production schedule is maintained. 

The final option is to print one shirt and deliver it to you for inspection, but this would incur additional charges (dependent on the number of art colors). 
 All art must be approved before production and any changes made after viewing the sample print will necessitate additional charges.

Q:  What can I do to get a lower price?

A:  There are many things that you can do to save money on your order:

            
  • Reduce the number of colors in your art.
  •    
  • Reduce the number of locations that the garment is being printed.
  • Increase the quantity.  Take advantage of our great price breaks for larger quantities. In some cases, it may be cheaper to order a larger quantity (ex. an order of 50 shirts is less than an order of 49).
  • Switch to a white shirt.  Generally white shirts are about $.80-90 cheaper than a colored shirt.
  • Switch to a different brand or style.  For instance, a Hanes Nano or Anvil 980 could substitute for a basic American Apparel t-shirt and save approximately $2 per shirt.
  • Add our logo to your shirt!  A 2.5" logo gets you a 4% discount.  A 6.5" logo gets you a 6% discount and an 11" logo saves you 8%.

Q:  We are a non-profit organization.  Do we have to pay tax?

A:  If your organization can provide a copy of a sales tax exemption letter from the State of Illinois you will not be liable for State sales taxes.  Please be aware that we cannot accept anything from the U.S. Treasury as proof of exemption. Sales tax is strictly a State and not a Federal issue. 

Q: I placed an order, and now I don’t want it anymore. Or: I ordered American Apparel shirts and now I want Hanes. Or: I want to change a bunch of sizes in my order. Will there be any repercussions?

A: Yes, unfortunately, we must charge a 15% restocking fee for any product we have already ordered that you longer want. This is purely because we have to pay to return the items.

Q: How will my order be shipped?

A: Standard UPS Ground service is included in all screen printing prices, and approximate delivery time is shown on this map. Ground service is not guaranteed, so it is advisable to have a day or two of cushion in your schedule should there be an unexpected delay. 1 Day, 2 Day, and 3 Day service is also available at an additional cost. We also offer free local delivery!

Q: I just got my order and I realized that I need a few more. Can you print one or a few shirts more? And what will it cost?

A: Costs are normally based on quantity and this means small orders cost more per garment than big orders.  However, we understand that sometimes our customers encounter the situation of forgetting someone or miscalculating their needs.  As a special service, we will do one small quantity reorder at the same price as the original order if it is placed within 2 weeks of the completion of the first order.

Q: I just got my shirts and there is a spelling error. What do I do?

A: Since we only print orders after an art proof has been approved, we are not responsible for spelling or other errors.  We realize that mistakes can happen and we are always happy to help someone who has made an honest mistake.  In some cases, we may be able to correct the already printed shirt or we may reprint at a discounted rate.

Q: Can I get prints of an old design?

A: Absolutely!  We retain your original films and electronic files for at least 3 years and often longer.  Normal pricing will apply based on the quantity, number of colors etc.  If you need to make any changes to the old design, just let us know.

Q: How long will the design stay on the shirt?

A: The printing will last for the useful life of the shirt. What we mean by that is that the design will show wear and fading at about the same rate as the garment. Normally, this means a life span of several years. Vinyl will not hold up as long as a screen print, but still has a long life. Be careful when washing, and especially when drying.

Q: We have had trouble getting a good bright white logo on our shirts in the past. Is there something that can be done?

A: You were probably using a 50/50 garment. Polyester dyes can discolor printing inks over time. This is especially true with unstable dye colors such as red. We would recommend that you use 100% cotton fabrics, particularly when using reds and purples.

Q: Do you customize other promotional products?

A: Yes! There is a large variety of other products we can get for you, ranging from can cozies to pens, flash drives, mugs, etc. Just let us know what you’re looking for and we will see if we can help you out.