Saturday, 19 May 2012

For the love of craft: Screen Printing

I've loved the idea of screen printing for a while now, ever since I worked for The Papered Parlour in London. The girls at the Parlour run workshops from jewellery making, dress making, and domestic sewing goddess, to photography and screen printing.  I particularly love their print your own wallpaper workshops using block printing - there are some great photos of people's beautiful creations on their Facebook page.

Despite working at the Parlour, I never got round to actually taking part in one of the screen printing workshops and now I live in Nottingham it's a little too far to go for a lesson. So I decided to teach myself and I've just bought a screen printing starter kit from Amazon.

My kit didn't really come with any instructions and there are so many books out there about printing and all the different methods and equipment you can use, it's so confusing! Because I blew my craft budget for the month on my kit, my lovely Mum and Dad bought me 'Printing by Hand' by Lena Corwin to get me started.

Great book for beginners - and has made me want to start potato stamping. Book review post coming soon!

But for now, here's my first screen printing attempt, using a paper template (OK, technically this is my second attempt because I used screen filler rather than a paper template the first time and it was an epic failure)

Here's what you'll need:
  • Silk screen
  • Printing medium
  • Acrylic paint
  • Squeegee
  • Paper

1. Decide on a template - something simple to start with. I went for a flamingo silhouette (really want to print a cushion with flamingos all over it when I've fully mastered this craft)

2. Draw your shape on a piece of paper about the thickness of newspaper and then cut it out with a craft knife


3. Position the paper or card you want to print onto with your template on top, the place your screen on top of them


4. Mix your acrylic paint with screen print medium and dollop it on the screen


5. Squeegee (fairly sure that's not how you spell it!) the ink down the screen, covering your piece of paper, because you used fairly light paper, it should now stick to the screen so you can continue printing on other areas of your paper



Et voila - a terrible example of a flamingo... but not the worst second attempt... 


I will master this... eventually! ;-p

Happy crafting,
Marie ♥

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