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I recently found these cute small tote bags on my favorite blanks website and knew they would be the perfect size for hauling around “mom stuff.” These will be great for taking to the pool this summer or carrying my iPad and notebooks.
Before you dive into trying DIY screen printing on a tote bag like this one, I have a few tips to help you execute it perfectly.
Supplies You Will Need for Screen Printing with Vinyl
- Screen Printing Frame
- 6″ Squeegee
- Fabric Screen Printing Ink (I used black)
- Oracal 651 Vinyl
- Cricut Maker
- Cricut Mat (I used the 12×12 for this project)
- My Favorite Transfer Tape
- Painter’s Tape
- Heat Gun or Flash Dryer (optional)
- Blank Tote Bags
- Mom Stuff SVG Cut File
Screen Printing with Vinyl
If you’ve been following along, you know that screen printing with vinyl is my go-to method for personalizing shirts, bags and so much more. If you are new to screen printing, this is a great place for beginners to start.
If you are just getting started screen printing, I recommend the 9″ Speedball squeegee. It’s a great size paired with the 10×14 Screen Printing Frame. However, you may occasionally run into a project where you need to use a different size squeegee.
Trick for Screen Printing on Tote Bags and Items with Uneven Surfaces
Choosing the right size squeegee for your project is key! In order to avoid the seams on this smaller tote bag, I found that a 6″ squeegee was a much better fit for this project. If you watch the video below, you can see as I explain why this is a better size.
Process Video Explaining How to Avoid Seams when Screen Printing
A Few More Helpful Tips
- You may notice in the video that I have a piece of masking tape marking the top of my bag. After carefully lining up the first bag (before adding ink to the screen), I marked the top line of the bag. This made it easier to align the remaining bags.
- Picking the right type of bag is important to avoid bleeding. I’ve found that some canvas materials with a lot of texture tend to cause the ink to bleed outside the design. This cotton canvas bag that I used was a great surface for screen printing. I didn’t have any bleeding issues. My larger go-to tote bag is this BAGedge Canvas Tote. For more of my favorite blank, check out my list of favorite blanks for screen printing.
- Scoop up the remaining ink after you are all done and put it back in your jar. This will help your ink go so much further!