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Screen Printing Tote Bags

Tote bags are a staple for screen printers. There are a lot of companies that want to sell canvas bags with their logo on them. So what does it take to create screen printed tote bags? We clear up the mystery.

Find A Good Tote Bag Supplier

The first thing you need is a good supplier for tote bags. There are a lot around. We recommend S & S Activewear. Doing a quick Google search can help you find a lot of different suppliers. Make sure that they are reputable and that their prices are reasonable. The prices for totes are pretty low, but they usually require you to require a minimum amount.

Create Your Screens

This is where totes are different from screen printing garments such as t-shirts. When you screen print a t shirt you create the screen with the image upside down. That is not true with printing totes. You will invert the image for a tote. Otherwise the image will be upside down on a tote bag. 

Setting Up Your Screen Print

You will insert your screen into the press. Find the center mark. Tighten it down. At this point the logo should be facing you. This is because the tote will be slid onto the platen like you would with a t shirt. 

Before you start printing you will need to draw a line on your platen. This will show you how far up you need to pull your canvas tote on the platen each time that you want to print totes. This may take some trial and error to get the exact spot that you want to print.

Printing Your Tote Bag

Add the ink directly to the screen and then lift the screen up. Using a spray adhesive, spray the platen thoroughly. Then slide the tote onto the platen up to the line that you drew in the previous step. 

Pull the screen down. Then using a squeegee, you will flood the screen with ink. Once the screen is flooded you will print the tote. Run it through twice so that you compensate for any rough edges on the tote. That’s it. 

The Final Word On Screen Printing Tote Bags

Screen printing tote bags is not that much different from screen printing shirts. You have to remember to create the screen inverted. The logo should face you. Not away from you. Run the squeegee over the print twice so that you can accommodate for the rough fabric. You will have perfectly designed tote bags. 

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