In addition to custom printing all of the volunteer and attendee shirts for the Maker Alliance camp event, I also brought my whole kit with me to give a workshop opportunity for all attendees to have a hand in making their own shirts. The 90-minute workshop started with talk + slideshow covering the digital design aspects of preparing screens. Then, with a little bit of Martha Stewart scheduling tactics, was able to provide hands on experience covering:

  • How to add emulsion to your screens
  • How to use UV light to transfer your design onto them
  • How to register/align the screens onto the 4-colour press
  • Applying the inks and how to screen press through
  • Aligning your shirt on the platen and timings for heat
  • Making your own shirt

The workshop was a whirlwind of fun – including a ‘best way is to learn by doing’ moment that one of the screens got UV exposed backwards (the white base layer) that only got caught as we were about to put the screens on the press. Turning lemons into lemonade and crowdsourcing the solution, the most limited edition and sought after shirt ended up being one where the back contained Makers Gonna Make Mistakes and the front with the corrected designs and colours.

The workshop was scheduled early in the 4-day event, and throughout the rest of the time the equipment was available with support of myself and some other now experienced shirt making volunteers to guide makers of all ages and skill levels to print as many shirts as we had stock for.

This was an absolute joy to put on. Big thanks to the Maker Alliance for hosting, and I’m looking forward to bringing more shirt related workshop adventures back next year!

The difference between watching a process happen on YouTube versus being able to try it for yourself.

One of the designs from camp applied to black cardstock made for a really nice album cover effect


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