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Quality Artwork Examples 0

I will go over a few examples of proper designs and images to be used with EZScreen stencils.

1 - Black & white designs, meaning monochrome (not photography)

Black & White Design for At Home Screen Printing

The image above (by Eric Casper) unfortunately will not work to expose EZScreen stencils. Actually, it wouldn't work with any form of screen printing. Because of all the shades of gray, the exposure light or sunlight will go right through and over expose those areas of the stencil. The only color that will properly block UV light is black.

DIY Silk Screen Printing Quality Artwork

Instead, the black clipart flower image above would work great. The only colors in this image is black and white. The black parts of the design will block sunlight from exposing the stencil and will render a perfect silk screening stencil.

2 - Quality of the image (jagged edges/pixelation)

Design Quality for DIY Silk Screening

It is extremely important to have a quality printout. The design should be solid black, without any jagged edges or pixelation from enlarging. The example above will produce a quality stencil; the example below will not work.

At Home DIY Screen Printing Artwork

3 - Some detail is too much

Our stencils can hold a surprising amount of detail, but they are not meant for precision screen printing or super detailed designs, either. There should not be any pencil thin lines in the design or it may not come out well.

DIY Screen Printing Stencils Artwork Detail

The image above would work great with EZScreen stencils. It is detailed, but the details are clear and visible.

DIY At Home Screen Printing Kits

This design unfortunately will have some problem areas in creating a good stencil. Some of the lines in the boat railing is too thin, and the small squares of the windows in the buildings will not be readable. The thin squiggly lines in the mountain may also be too thin to produce a quality screen printing stencil.

These are some basic examples of what quality artwork and design should look like when making an EZScreen stencil. Please contact us or leave a comment if you have any questions.

What are EZScreen's? 0

EZScreen™ silk-screen emulsion stencils are a user-friendly product for creating custom stencils to use on fabric, t-shirts, metal, wood, paper, glass, ceramic, plastic, cardboard, tile, polymer clay... the list is endless! EZScreen™ is a unique material made from fine silkscreen mesh coated with light sensitive, water-soluble emulsion. It uses black designs printed on transparency film, sunlight, and tap water to develop.  

Take your basic silk screen, remove the metal or wooden frame, do away with all those nasty chemicals and what do you end up with? EZScreen™; a simple yet innovative product for creating custom screen printing stencils without cutting. And because it's based on the old tried and true method of screen printing and photography, it's much more versatile than plastic stencils.   

However, unlike conventional screen-printing that relies on complicated chemicals and block-out paint, our product is coated with a light-sensitive emulsion that only requires sunlight and plain tap water to develop. This allows you to create custom screenprinting stencils with amazing details, plus, no expensive equipment or toxic chemicals are required. EZScreen™ stencils are flexible and can be used on a number of surfaces, with a large variety of paints and glass etching paints.

EZScreen™ stencils are reusable. Clean with plain water, latex paint remover, paint thinner or oil based paint remover, let dry and re-use. Glass etching creams won't harm the stencils. Etch glass with the same stencil over and over again. 

Anyone can use EZScreen™ Stencils

You don't need to be a skilled artist to use EZScreen™ emulsion stencils; anyone can screen print with professional results. Use it on fabric to create your own custom t shirts – just like the t-shirt printing shops. Design funny t-shirts for friends. Amaze your family members with family reunion t-shirts. Screen print custom polo shirts for club members, personalized t-shirts for your Internet business, or for school fund raising and other types of charity organizations.   

EZScreen™ stencils are not limited to t-shirt screen printing; try our screen printing kit to start your own screen printing business. EZScreen™ stencils are ideal for screenprinting decorative dishware, personalized coffee mugs, silk screen printing ceramic tiles; practically all ceramic projects. EZScreen™ stencils are very popular with polymer clay artists and particularly suited to polymer clay jewelry.  

Create lasting memories with beautiful wedding albums, photo album covers and inserts for your baby memory books.  Build creative memories with custom scrap booking pages. Use it with your rubber stamps to add a custom touch to your paper art projects. Create unique professional looking artwork with custom silk screening designs. From t-shirt screen printing, to adding a custom design on ceramic plates, let your imagination go wild!

Need Help Getting Started? 0

These are our recommendations of what you will need to get started using EZScreen™ silk screen stencils and on your way to create your very own custom t-shirts and crafts!
 
Complete T-Shirt Starter Kits - Comes with everything you need to make five 8.5"x11" EZScreen stencils and print t-shirts, wood or other fabric projects. These kits include your choice of fabric ink sets.
 
Basic Starter Kits - Comes with everything you need to make two 8.5"x11" EZScreen stencils. We recommend the basic kits if you only need one or two colors of ink (not included) or if you are printing on a surface that requires specialty inks/paints.
 
Standard Refill Sheets - If you have several designs, Standard EZScreen™ Stencils are available in refill sheets (optional). Standard silk screen stencils are typically used for fabric such as t-shirts, sweatshirts, tote bags and other porous surfaces. Choose from 3, 5, 10 and 20 packs in our regular size screens. Mini and large stencils are also available.

HiDef Refill Sheets - If you have several designs, HiDef EZScreen™ Stencils are available in refill sheets (optional). HiDef Stencil Sheets are intended for artwork with small details, fine lines, or halftones. Typically, used for hard surfaces such as glass, plastic, and metal. Choose from 3, 5, 10 and 20 packs in our regular size screens. Mini sizes are also available.

Mini Refill Stencils - If you have small designs, Standard or HiDef EZScreen™ Mini Stencils are available in refill sheets (optional). Choose from 6, 12, 24 and 50 packs.
  
EZScreen™ Large Stencil - For larger designs we offer 11"x17" stencils (optional)

  • Large Exposure Board - Used to expose EZScreen™ 11"x17" large stencil (Required if large stencils are purchased)

Transparency Film - Used to print your high quality design/artwork. Choose from ink jet or laser/copier transparency sheets. Regular printer paper is NOT recommended. Included in all basic and complete kits, but not mini kits.

Plastic Canvas
-
To support the EZScreen™ Stencil during rinsing and cleaning ink. Comes in various sizes and types. Included in all basic and complete kits, but not mini kits.
 
Cardboard insert - Used to cover EZScreen™ Stencil in exposure board unit before and after exposure to direct sunlight. Included in all starter kits except mini kits.

Squeegees - Used to apply screen printing ink onto fabric. Comes in different sizes. 9" Speedball squeegees also available (optional)
 
Plastic Frames - Helpful for multiple printing (optional)
Improve your efficiency with a plastic frame. There is no need to wash the stencil after each print. The number of prints depends on your skill level and practice. Also, helps to prevent the ink from going over the edge of the stencil and onto the shirt. Use tape (masking tape, scotch tape, etc.) to adhere the stencil to the frame. Plastic frames are available in a variety of sizes. Included in complete kits.
 
Screen Printing Inks - Speedball or Jacquard screen printing inks
Choose from Speedball and Jacquard screen printing inks. Both are ideal for EZScreen™ stencils. They are slow drying for multiple printing and washes off with water. Heat setting is required to prevent fading. Use a heat press or a dry iron set on the highest temperature. Keep the iron moving to prevent scorching. Wait one week before washing. Included in complete kits and also available in individual jars.
  
Versatex Fixer - Heat setting is not required if you mix fixer into the ink. It can be mixed with Speedball, Jacquard, or Versatex Inks. (optional)
 
Speedball Exposure Light - If you do not have direct sunlight (optional)
When direct sunlight is not available, expose/burn EZScreen™ Stencil any time, day or night, with our affordable light units.

Use Direct Sunlight 0

Direct Sunlight

One of the most crucial parts of making an EZScreen DIY silk screen stencil is the exposure process. It is absolutely essential that you use DIRECT sunlight to burn the screen. Cloudy weather will not work. Exposing the stencil too early in the morning when the sun is at an angle as well as late in the afternoon when the sun is going down will not produce a quality stencil. It is best to burn the EZScreen stencil when the sun is directly overhead.

NOTE: Per our instructions, please test exposure time with small test pieces provided in the black bag before using an entire stencil. If you encounter any problems, please contact us right away for trouble shooting assistance. Only expose EZScreen™ stencils in direct sunlight; no clouds or shade. If sunlight is not available, use our tested artificial lights.

If you do not have access to direct sunlight, please use one of our tested artificial lights to burn the stencil. Many lights will work, however, determining the exact exposure time and set distance from the stencil during exposure will be hard to do. It is best to use one of the lights provided on our website as it will come with complete exposure instructions.

Choose from two lights:

DIY Screen Printing Speedball Exposure Light

Speedball Exposure Light Kit for exposing EZScreen™ stencils. Exposes in just 7 minutes with Standard and HiDef 8.5"x11" stencils using transparency film. 

Includes:

  • One (1) - Lamp
  • One (1) - 250 watt photo flood bulb

Note: Bulb lasts about 3 hours. Replacement bulbs available


OR

DIY Screen Printing Exposure Light

EZScreen™ Exposure Light Table fixture comes with long lasting white fluorescent bulbs and legs for exposing EZScreen™ stencils. The fixture adjusts up or down to fit the height of exposure. Exposes in just 20 minutes with Standard and 40 minutes with HiDef using transparency film. 
 
Includes:

  • Two, 20 watt fluorescent bulbs
  • Two lamp 24" fixture
  • 17 inch tall aluminum legs
  • 3 wire cord (International customers must use appropriate adapter)
  • Light slides for easy adjustment
  • 17”h x 27”w x 10”d
  • Easy adjustment knobs

EZScreen FAQ 0

View our most frequently asked questions.

Q: What are EZScreen™ Stencils?
A: EZScreen™ Stencil is a material for creating custom stencils without the tedious process of cutting your own. Instead, it uses black and white images on transparency, sunlight and tap water to develop. And because it's based on silkscreen with a light sensitive coating, you can create very intricate designs that are virtually impossible with traditional stencils. Plus, no expensive equipment or toxic chemicals are required. EZScreen™ Stencils are reusable. Clean with plain tap water, latex paint remover, paint thinner or oil based paint remover; let dry and reuse. Glass etching creams won't harm EZScreen™ Stencil. Etch glass with the same stencil over and over again. When etching glass, be sure to use a light coating of stencil adhesive spray, tape, or slightly dampen the stencil. EZScreen™ Stencil becomes tacky when damp and will adhere to glass or hard surfaces.

Q: How do I know which EZScreen™ Stencil to use, Standard or HiDef?
A: There are a few things to consider when choosing Standard or HiDef.
Standard is typically used for fabric such as t-shirts, sweatshirts, and other porous surfaces. Standard is easier to clean after exposure to light source, easier to use when applying ink or paint, and is more suited for multiple printing. Standard is appropriate for most projects and can achieve incredible details. However, a mesh pattern transferred to the paint may be more visible, and the edges may not be as sharp on hard surfaces. Applying paint or ink to fabric or other types of porous surfaces will not have this problem.
HiDef is intended for artwork with smaller details or halftones. Typically used for hard surfaces such as glass and metal. HiDef has a higher thread count so the green residue may cling to the mesh making it harder to clean after exposure to light source. More pressure may be needed when applying paint or ink. Not all paints are suitable for HiDef, such as ceramic or metallic paints; the pigments may be too large and may not go through the mesh. It is important to test the paint first. You can achieve superb details with HiDef and the mesh transferred to the paint is less visible on hard surfaces.
 
Q: How long will the stencil last and how many times can it be used?
A:
With proper care, EZScreen™ Silk Screen Stencils will last a long time and can be used over and over again. After applying ink or paint immediately clean the stencil, let it completely dry then use it again and again. Do not allow paint to dry on stencil.

 
Q: Can EZScreen™ Stencil be exposed on a cloudy or overcast day?
A:
No. Exposure time may vary too much if it’s cloudy or overcast, therefore, we DO NOT recommend exposing on a cloudy or overcast day as it may filter the UV at different levels. Expose EZScreen™ Stencil in DIRECT SUNLIGHT only. You can expose EZScreen™ Stencil anytime day or night with our exposure light units.

 
Q: Can EZScreen™ Stencil print in multiple colors?
A: Typically no. EZScreen™ stencil is intended for one color printing. The color separation is a challenge. The silkscreen mesh will shift and will not align properly for the next layer of color. However, you can achieve simple multi color application that does not require precision registration, such as a heart on an "I heart New York" t-shirt.

 
Q: Can EZScreen™ Stencils be cut to the size I need?
A: Yes, you can cut EZScreen™ Stencil to the size you need. Allow at least a half-inch border all around the artwork.
 
Q: What can I use to hold the stencil in place?
A:
Use tape or try stencil adhesive spray. Just a light spray will do the job. The stencil will remain tacky even after cleaning it. For hard surfaces, wet the stencil, then blot on paper towels. The stencil becomes tacky when wet and adheres to hard surfaces like glass, plastic, and metal. Make sure the stencil is not too wet otherwise the paint will bleed.

 
Q: How large are the EZScreen™ Stencil sheets?
A: Our regular sheets are 8.5"x11". Mini kits comes in smaller sheets 4.25"x5.5". Our largest size is the EZScreen™ Large Stencil, 11"x17", to be used with the large exposure frame 13"x19" sold separately.
 
Q: Will EZScreen™ Stencil work with printed circuit board (PCB)?
A:
In theory it should, however, since printed circuit boards require precise alignment, it is not recommended. The fact that EZScreen™ Stencil comes in sheets can cause it to deform beyond the ability to make a good circuit board.

 
Q: Can I make EZScreen™ Stencil with halftones?
A: Yes. Unlike traditional plastic stencils that are essentially silhouettes, our stencils can do halftones and line art and even contain floaters. Test out a small piece first before committing to a larger piece of EZScreen™ Stencil. Use larger dot per inch halftones. For best results use transparency printed on the best print quality and heavy ink. EZScreen™ HiDef Stencil is recommended for more detailed images and halftones.
 
Q: How do I clean the EZScreen™ Stencil?
A
: EZScreen™ Stencil typically cleans with regular tap water, soap and water, latex paint remover, acetone or paint thinner. Type of cleaner depends on the paint being removed. Test small area before cleaning. Although EZScreen™ silk screening stencils are fairly rugged, do not scrub film side, fold or ring out to dry. After cleaning, place on flat surface on top of paper towels for drying or plastic canvas. Lay stencil with shiny (tacky) side facing up. Note: Never place shiny side of EZScreen™ silkscreen on any surface while drying. Doing so will cause the stencil to stick to the surface. If this happens, re-soak the silk screen stencil until it releases.

 
Q: Do I need a photographic dark room to develop EZScreen™ Stencils?
A: No. EZScreen™ Stencils can tolerate a few minutes of exposure to light levels found in typical homes as long as it is kept several feet away from artificial light sources and is protected from direct sunlight. Minimize exposure to florescent tubes; they emit more UV energy then incandescent bulbs. Illuminate work area with yellow bug lights (60 watts or less) if additional lighting/working time is desired. Fully developed EZScreen™ silk screen stencils do not require protection from light. Do not remove protective clear backing until ready for use. Once backing is removed, handle EZScreen™ silk screen stencil from edges only. Avoid putting fingerprints or scratching surface of photosensitive film.
 
Q: How should I store EZScreen™ Stencils?
A: Keep undeveloped EZScreen™ Stencils in black bag and store in refrigerator. Protect from freezing and high humidity. Ideal temperature range is 65 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit. EZScreen™ Stencils degrades quickly above 110 degrees.
 
Q: Does EZScreen™ Stencils have a shelf life?
A:
Yes. We recommend you use it within six months of purchase. Shelf life can be dramatically affected by temperature conditions while storing. For longer shelf life, store undeveloped EZScreen™ Screen Printing Stencil in your refrigerator.

Note: Once the stencil has been developed there is NO longer a shelf life. Be sure to store the stencil flat such as in a folder or sheet protector in a binder.
 
Q: Can I use my own artificial light source to expose EZScreen™ Stencil?
A:
Many artificial light sources may work. However, there are too many to know what the individual exposure time would be or if it will work properly at all. Therefore, we do not support alternative light sources, other than our own exposure light unit. If you choose to use your own artificial light source, you will need to experiment with the exposure time using small test pieces. Halogen and blue lights do not work. Use direct sunlight if possible, or our own exposure light unit.

 
Q: What do I need to get started?
A: If you are new to EZScreen™ Stencils, view our Help Guide - Getting Started page.