Are you looking for a way to create a stencil that will allow you to make sharp designs on paper and fabric over and over? Do you have patience and the ability to follow detailed directions? Then the new Simply Screen Printing Kit from Plaid might be for you.
I was sent a kit, some ink, and a refill pack to try out, but you can purchase your supplies at Hobby Lobby (the only store that carries the kit).
This home screen printing kit offers the ability to either print out your own design or draw your own with a Sharpie. I originally wanted to create a double screen design of my new Mad in Crafts logo, but after trying several times with terrible results, I gave up.
I found that this hand-drawn bow was much more successful, probably for two reasons: 1) The design is thicker and less detailed and 2) I weighted down the design in the light box with a piece of glass from a frame which prevented excess light from exposing my screen.
I may go back later and retry my logo design idea using the glass. If I do, I will share the results with you.
I won’t go into details about the whole process of exposing the design to the light and creating your screen. Most of my early attempts ended disappointment. If you follow the directions in the package EXACTLY, and be sure to use a piece of glass to weight down your design, you should be able to eventually create a nice screen. It took me LOTS of tries to get to that point, however.
Once you have a successful screen, the real fun begins. I decided to see how versatile the screen and ink were by printing on paper and two kinds of fabric.
First I wrapped a present in freezer paper, placed the screen in the middle, and spread the ink.
The Fire Truck red ink is a saturated red which is perfect for a Christmas package. The slight smudges along the lines of the design happened when I pulled the screen up off of the paper.
It would be handy to print off the names of each family member, and make them each their own screen. Then you could screen print their names on each of their presents, instead of using gift tags. Store the screens with your wrapping paper and they will be ready to use again next year!
Next I tried screen printing on a cotton onesie. I used the exact same screen as I did for the Christmas present above to make this cute, girl’s shirt. If you covered the section of the screen that makes the two trailing ribbons, you could use the same screen to make a bowtie shirt for a little boy!
The design came out very will without needing much ink at all.
This picture doesn’t do the Tin Foil ink color justice. In person it is a silvery-gray and has a nice shimmer to it.
The advantage screen printing has over freezer paper stenciling is the ability to reuse the screen over and over. It would be cute to make all the kids in the family similar bow shirts, each in his or her own color, for Christmas morning.
Finally, I tried printing on a synthetic fabric. Again, I used the exact same screen for this project. I wanted to try to achieve an ombre effect with two colors, so I tried staggering the ink and swiping the applicator straight down.
This is what the screen looked like before I pulled it up to reveal the design.
The inks didn’t mix as well as I had hoped they would, but you can see a slight gradation from one color to the next. The farthest right part of the design didn’t come through, so I had to take a paintbrush and fill in that part of the bow.
Some of the ink leaked under my tape, but I quickly wiped it off with a damp paper towel (hence the wet spot under the bow). Most of the ink washed out pretty well.
Once a successful screen is made, printing out projects is a lot of fun. However, I found the process of making a screen EXTREMELY frustrating and time consuming. And for the cost of the product ($40 for the kit, $20 for refill packets), this is not a purchase I would have been happy about making.
However, I did think of one situation when the cost and the patience required would be well worth it. If you have an event with a repeated motif, like a wedding for example, this could be a great way to DIY that motif over and over. With just one successful screen, you could create invitations, table markers, table décor, guests for your bridal party, take-home favors, etc. that would all match perfectly and look very professional.
Visit these other great sites and see how they used the Simply Screen Kit!
This post is part of a sponsored campaign on behalf of Plaid Crafts and Simply Screen. The screen printing supplies for this project were provided by Plaid Crafts. All opinions are 100% my own. Find my FTC disclosure here.