Today I wanted to show you how I made a set of Bride shirts for a job I did recently.
The job was a set of custom tank-top bridesmaid shirts for a party of 14 people.
The Bride, Stephanie, is having her wedding in Clearwater Beach, FL and mermaids are her thing!
In fact, when she learned we were going to use Triton Vinyl (named after a merman) she was delighted at the coincidence.
If you’re like most bride shirt printing companies, you’ll have an extensive range of sizes you’ll need to order. And, for this job, the sizes range from a children small all the way through 3X tops.
For these Bride shirts, I’ll be using stock art on 100% cotton tank tops, but you could also use plain t-shirts. I like cotton because it feels soft and is relatively inexpensive. Most people enjoy the soft feel of cotton on their skin. Don’t you?
Stephanie wanted both sides of the Bachelorette shirts decorated with Mermaid themed logos. She also wanted shirts to contain the bride party members name and their wedding title on the back.
We decided to use three great looking “mermaid” type colors of vinyl. I typically use the Triton heat transfer vinyl because it gives me the long-lasting quality and the soft feel that customers like when buying Bride shirts.
It’s especially fantastic that the Triton glitter vinyl isn’t rough on the skin. Since the shirts have some glitter, including the kid’s shirts, this makes a huge difference in the comfort of the apparel for the person wearing
For this job, I’m going to use equipment that comes with my Cut n’ Press system to create this set of Bride shirts.
There’s a great software system I use that helps me create the outlines of the art. It’s called Graphtec Studio Pro, and it will help me build the artwork ready to go to the machine.
I’ll then use the Graphtec CE6000-60 Plus cutter to cut out all the parts and letters of the bridesmaid shirts. You can get your system like this by checking out their Cut N Press HTV Vinyl System.
That’s where I got all the great looking vinyl for this set of bride party shirts. I use different apparel decorating methods for different situations.
Once I’ve cut the design, I’ll proceed to weed the design. Weeding is a technical term which means to remove all of the pieces that I don’t want on the garment. Once I’ve weeded the artwork, it’s just a matter of getting the correct placement correct on the bride shirts.
PRO TIP: To conserve vinyl I will cut out the glitter silver accent art separately so that I will not waste the middle area which contains the white lettering. Also, I will layout the names and titles as close as can on the opaque white vinyl to conserve as well.
Finally, Once I have prepared all of my pieces I will lay them on the bridesmaid shirts to ensure I have all the parts I need and that they are ready to take to the press.
If you get into the business, you’ll probably want to use the Hotronix Fusion heat press as I do. You’ll be able to thread the garment and on both sides quickly.
If I didn’t have this luxury, I would have used a Teflon pillow or print perfect pad to slip inside my Bride shirts to prevent it from overcooking the vinyl on the reverse side.
Now for the final step in the process which is heat pressing the designs onto the shirts. On the Fusion heat press, I will lay the bride shirts out and arrange the cut vinyl just the way Stephanie wanted them. It’s her big day after all.
I’ll press for the full 10-12 seconds at 302 F.
If I find that my parts of the designs are overlapping, I can both trim the edges of the transfer paper, or I can layer each piece. I would do this by pressing for 1 second and then removing the transfer paper. The final layer I will heat press each of the bride shirts for the full 10 seconds.
PRO TIP: Be careful not to let the edge of the transfer paper lay across any pressed vinyl It may leave a line indenting the side of the transfer sheet.
If this is unavoidable, then you can use a sheet of parchment and cut out the middle (where your cut vinyl design is) that way the parchment is blocking the edge of the transfer sheet but is out of the way of the design!
I’ll just repeat this process for each of the 14 Bridesmaid shirts.
There you have it! A whole set of 14 Bridal Party Shirts – Various sizes, customized entirely with two colors on the front, and two colors on the back.
Stephanie was thrilled with the shirts and can’t wait to reveal them to her bridal party at the rehearsal dinner! A happy bride and a job well done!
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