Cherry LA: A Lesson in Creativity for Any Small Business

When it comes to 2019 fashion, streetwear is still king. Brands like Supreme, Stüssy, and even Louis Vuitton, continue to buzz in circles of hype beasts and fashionistas alike. The rise and reign of streetwear is intrinsically tied to social media, with brands like I.AM.GIA proving that overnight success is just one Hadid or Jenner Instagram tag away from blowing up in popularity.

Though breaking into the landscape may seem impossible as a small business, Cherry Los Angeles has shown there’s plenty of room for the small guy to shine in the streetwear scene. While Cherry LA’s re-worked Dickies and bold graphic tees are worthy of praise, their ever-growing success can really be attributed to their bold and brilliant branding. If you’re looking to carve your own path in the streetwear sector, be sure to add Cherry LA to your inspiration board for ideas in creativity.

New to the brand? Don’t worry, we’ll get you up to speed!

Continue reading “Cherry LA: A Lesson in Creativity for Any Small Business”

PRINTING w/ Glow in the Dark Ink on a 100% Poly Rabbit Skins Cape

Wearing a cape can give you superpowers, but upselling with them can give you SUPER PROFITS! Imagine a client from a local school approaches you to print a bunch of tees for an upcoming event, and you have a Rabbit Skins Cape handy to show them. But, this is no ordinary cape. Its got a printed design on it using glow-in-the-dark ink! They see it glowing and instantly think, “WOW, this would be perfect to give our graduating kindergartners!” Now, you’ve turned that ONE job into TWO jobs from the same client.

When the right opportunity presents itself, these capes are the perfect way to increase your sales, and people will remember that you’re the one to go to, when they’re looking for cool ideas.

Check out the demonstration below to see Geno, from Learnhowtoscreenprint.com, show you how to use glow-in-the-dark ink on the Rabbit Skins 100% polyester cape (Style #1111).

Setting Customer Expectations for Optimal Screen Printing Designs

In the screen printing business, quality customer service and the ability to retain clients can have a huge impact on your bottom line. While many companies operate based on the coined phrase, “the customer is always right,” it doesn’t mean clients should walk all over your business or exploit your services. Part of operating a successful business is creating reasonable customer expectations upfrontespecially when it comes to screen printing designs.

Educating the client early about any artwork limitations helps build brand trust, ultimately leading to repeat customers. The last thing you want is Continue reading “Setting Customer Expectations for Optimal Screen Printing Designs”

3 Things to Know Before Starting Your Own Custom Apparel Business

With the prominence of graphic tees and streetwear in high fashion, custom apparel has seen an uptick in volume—especially among Millennials. In 2017, 34 percent of Millennials bought custom pieces, and 42 percent said they’re willing to pay more for customized items (as opposed to non-custom clothing). Considering that the global custom t-shirt printing industry is projected to exceed $10 billion by 2025, it’s a business with high-profit potential and a comparatively low initial investment.

Before taking the leap to start your own custom apparel business, we’ve listed three important things you should know. Continue reading “3 Things to Know Before Starting Your Own Custom Apparel Business”

HOW TO SCREEN PRINT using DISCHARGE INK as a BASE w/ PLASTISOL (feat. ComfortWash by Hanes)

Ever think about printing with both plastisol and discharge inks together? In this video, Geno shows us just how to do that, using Matsui High Mesh Discharge White Ink and GSG Vortex plastisol inks on the ComfortWash GDH100 Garment Dyed Tee.

Why would you want to print this way? Sometimes, using discharge ink as a base, allows the plastisol colors on top to pop and look more vibrant, as you’ll see in the video.

If your going for a vintage look, discharging on garment dyed apparel is the perfect option for printing, since the ink will be set into the fabric, rather than be set on the surface of it. This gives you that “worn-in” look that makes the design look aged.

 

5 Benefits of Direct-to-Garment Printing

With several, quality methods available to create impressive, custom apparel garments, direct-to-garment (DTG) printing is a newer technique gaining recognition among printers – especially small-business owners. Created in the late ’90s, DTG printing uses a custom inkjet printer to apply water-based inks directly to the textile. The garment’s fibers then absorb the liquid. The process is likened to printing a document at home — replace paper with garments. The outcome is some seriously impressive designs customers go crazy for.

Whether you’re considering contemporary tactics to add to your business services or just getting started and marinating on a customization method, direct-to-garment printing can be a lucrative option.

Below are just five, key benefits of what DTG printing has to offer: Continue reading “5 Benefits of Direct-to-Garment Printing”

Leasing vs. Buying Equipment: Which is Better for my Business?

One of the biggest decisions a business owner faces in the custom apparel industry is whether to buy or lease equipment. Investing in pricey machinery can seem risky, especially when the future of your company is on the line.  To help make the decision a little easier, we’ve provided the pros and cons of buying versus leasing equipment. Continue reading “Leasing vs. Buying Equipment: Which is Better for my Business?”

HOW TO SCREEN PRINT on Polyester (feat. The Badger ULTIMATE Softlock Tee)

Dye Migration Problems

Trying to print on 100% polyester can be a nightmare without using the right inks and the right procedure. Client’s printed designs can go from a beautiful work of art to a horribly discolored mess, in the blink of an eye. Or even worse, declaration will show up days later after they already have the products in their hands. This is caused by dye migration, which happens when dye from 100% polyester fabric turns into a gas and seeps into the ink of the printed design.

How to Properly Print on 100% Polyester

To help you out, Geno from learnhowtoscreenprint.com, is going to show us what steps you can take to prevent dye migration from ruining your 100% polyester prints. To demonstrate, he’ll be using our BRAND NEW Badger Softlock Tees (style 4020). 

“BEHIND THE INK” w/ Greg Gaardbo

“What I think makes our business successful is CREATIVITY, Number 1.” says Greg Gaardbo, owner of Shockwaves Promotional Apparel. His creativity and ability to think outside the box has helped him build a business that’s continued growing for over 23 years. We sat down with him at his shop, located just outside of Chicago, to find out how he got started, what his inspirations are, and what’s made him so successful. One thing is for sure. He has a thirst for creativity, dabbling in screen printing, embroidery, laser cutting, sublimation, drawing and even woodworking. AND…. that’s not all. In his SPARE time, Greg and his wife, Kristina, run an award winning Texas BBQ restaurant, named the Chicago Culinary Kitchen, on the weekends. This place serves up some tasty BBQ that’s so good, it’s even been featured on The Cooking Channel. A man of many talents, Greg definitely has the recipe for success.

BONUS FOOTAGE: See this dynamic duo talk about their delicious BBQ!