How to Screen Print with Vinyl on Swimwear

Jun 22, 2020 | Cricut Projects, Project Ideas, Screen Printing, Screen Printing Press, Vinyl Projects

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It’s time to make a splash with screen printing!  Have you thought about personalizing swimwear, but not sure what will hold up in the pool or at the beach?

Screen printing is a great way to make a permanent design on a rash guard shirt or your swimsuit.

how to screen print speedball cricut vinyl swim

Personalizing Swimwear with Cricut or Silhouette

If you are looking for a way to personalize your swim gear, screen printing with vinyl is a great way to make a permanent design.

One of the reasons I prefer screen printing over iron-on vinyl (HTV) is that screen printing ink holds up better in the long run.  It won’t peel off after a few washes.

With your Cricut or Silhouette machine, you can cut any design.  Then, use the adhesive vinyl to make a stencil for screen printing.

Supplies Needed for Screen Printing

screen printing easy press heat set ink

How to Screen Print on Swimsuits or Rash Guards

The process of screen printing on swim gear is the same as screen printing on t-shirts. If you are new to the process, this is a great place to get started: Screen Printing with Vinyl for Beginners.

I used my 1-color press to take the guesswork out of the process.  With the press, if you miss a spot, you can lower the screen back down and add more ink.

After screen printing the design on your shirt, allow the ink to dry completely.  If you have time, 2-3 days drying time is ideal.  You can speed up this process by placing your item in a well ventilated area with a fan (or use a heat gun).

Once your shirt is completely dry, heat press the design to make the ink permanent on your item.  With your Easy Press2 or heat press set to 320 degrees, press for 40 seconds. Note: it’s always best to test your item to make sure it can withstand the heat of your press.  For more ways to heat set your screen printed projects, check out 6 Ways to Heat Set Your Screen Printing Ink

Process Video

Here’s a quick look at the entire process.

Tips for Screen Printing on Stretchy Material

If you are trying this process on a swimsuit, keep in mind that the design will stretch when worn.  For some sizes, your 1-color press will help by stretching over the pallet.  Screen printing the item while it is stretched out a bit will help prevent as much distortion when it’s worn.


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