How Much Does Cotton T Shirt Printing Cost? Guide to Starting a Screen Printing Business


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Thinking about starting your own shirt printing business, particularly investing in the screen printing method? If yes, then you will want to read this guide to answer the questions you have in mind.


What is Screen Printing?

It is a printing technique that’s comparable to stencil. It transfers a design on the product (substrate) through a screen made from a synthetic polymer.


Can I Make Money?

An estimated amount that you can make in a year is at least $100,000.


What is the Average Cost?

There are elements that you need to take note of in running a screen-printing business. Below are the details.


  • Cotton T Shirt Printing Cost – the wholesale cost for cotton shirts would be about $24 for every dozen, 100% heavyweight cotton white tees. Price varies on quantity.


  • Silk Screens – It will cost you around $25 for the pre-stretched mesh screens. The images can be changed, and the screen can be used repeatedly. You can reuse the screen beyond 20 times.


  • Making Silk Screen – to make the screen, you will need to spend about $1.50 on supplies. If you prepare it ahead of time, making the screen will be faster. What takes a lot of time here is waiting for the mesh screen frames to dry.


  • Screen Printing Ink – from a gallon of plastisol ink for screen printing, you can produce thousands of prints. It is recommended to calculate the cost at $.05 for every t shirt. Tip: When you choose the best plastisol ink for screen printing, do not just base it on price alone. Why? Because your low price can become expensive since it will take more time (labor-wise), and you will need to buy more chemicals or ink modifiers to get the right consistency of the ink. Buy high-quality, premium ink.


  • Time & Labor – it takes time to make screens and print on the shirts. You will be more productive if you reclaim, pre-clean, or coat some screens gradually. If you already have on your shelf ready-to-expose screens, in less just than an hour, you can expose and make preparations for the screen printing.


  • Business Utilities – you need to calculate shop space, electricity, heat, lights, as well as added space that you need to use. It is crucial to choose the right location and environment so that your silkscreen will function well, given the right conditions.


Benefits of Having Your Own Screen Printing Business

  • There is a big market for small printing jobs that most big printing firms do not need.
  • In an hour, you can make money even in the small space of your own home.
  • Being the middleman, you order and print the customer’s exact order.
  • A shirt with a brand name can add recognition to what you are selling.
  • Little to no inventory, wherein in a day, the local distributor can deliver the t-shirts.
  • You are the boss.


The cost may be affordable or expensive at the start. However, if the business goes well and you get many printing orders, you’re assured of a good stream of income.







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