DIY screen printing with Mod Podge

Learn how to screen print with Mod Podge - it's easy and budget friendly!I finally did it! I screen printed with Mod Podge. I’ve talked about this before, always wanted to do it, and I finally did. Let’s not talk about the fact that I want to use wallpaper with Mod Podge too and haven’t done it yet – no, let’s not even go there. I’m so pleased with the results of my project that I bring you a DIY screen printing tutorial. I’ll start with something easy and then tell you about my shirt above.

Here’s my first try, the snowflake tote:

Finished Bag

To do screen printing yourself, you need to gather a few supplies. Here’s what I pulled together.

  • Embroidery hoop – doesn’t matter if it’s wood or plastic
  • Sheer curtain panel – I got mine for $1 at the dollar store
  • Screen printing ink – any kind or colors, Speedball is great
  • Fabric Mod Podge
  • Flat paint brush
  • Sheet of paper, any kind
  • Pencil
  • Cotton bag
  • Scissors

Pull from FrontI like to jump in, so you should to. Take your sheer curtain panel and fasten it into the embroidery hoop. Screw it closed and pull the curtain tight, tight, tight.

Cut from BackNow turn your hoop over and cut the excess curtain material around the frame. Put the extra curtain aside and then pull your screen taut again.

DrawNow get as crafty as you want to! You’re going to need an image, so either hand draw one or print something off of the computer. I wanted a simple snowflake, so I hand drew mine (I first marked off the hoop so I wouldn’t do it too big or small). Notice it would have been easier for me to print something or use a ruler, but I like to make things as difficult as possible and do lots of erasing.

Trace Onto ScreenGo ahead and place your screen on the design you just drew (or printed). Trace directly onto the screen with a pencil. All the tutorials I’ve seen use a pencil, so that’s what I used. Not sure what happens if you use a pen, but I really didn’t want to mess this up so I didn’t try and find out.

Fill with podgeYay, my favorite part! Using the brush, paint Mod Podge on your screen where you DON’T want the ink to go through. This is called the “resist” because it resists the ink coming through the screen. I thought about it long and hard, and I decided to use Fabric Mod Podge. Why, because if it’s washable, then it would be easy to wash the ink out (Mod Podge staying behind) and then use the screen again for multiple prints. I know, I know – I’m smart.

Let your Mod Podge screen dry for a few hours until it’s completely clear. I did a few layers of Mod Podge because I was nervous about the ink getting through in some areas if I didn’t do it well enough. Your host is also a neurotic screen printer.

PaintThis is the second fun part – place your screen down on the bag and paint! One important thing: place something between the layers of fabric, so that the ink doesn’t bleed through. You never know. Be sure when you are painting through the screen to get the corners well. I did several layers of paint before I pulled up.

Finished BagPull the screen off and allow to dry. Check out my finished project again! If you found you messed up in any areas, go back and touch up with the brush. Follow the directions on the packaging of your screen print ink to finish your project (wash or heat seal, etc.).

Snowflake screenOnce I did the bag I was more confident, so I created this mini snowflake screen in the same way that I did the large snowflake one for the bag.

I grabbed a gray t-shirt and mixed together some black and white screen printing ink, then followed the steps I listed above. You’ll notice I did several shades on the t-shirt. Gray tonal makes me happy, so printed one snowflake, then added more white. Then did it again. And again. And one more time. Finished t-shirt!

Screenprinting with Mod PodgeTo completely finish her off, I added some buttons, because you know I love them. Great thing is that the screen is reusable, you have tons of curtain material from your sheer panel to make more and now your friends and family all want you to make them a shirt. Are you ready to try DIY screen printing now?

 

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Comments

  1. Heather - CROQZine.com - Dollarstorecrafts.com says

    Woo hoo, that’s great. I love me some inexpensive craft hacks!!

  2. Crafterella says

    Wow, your prints turned out great! I have been wanting to try this forever too, do you know if you can squeegee the ink like you would with regular screen printing or is it best to just brush it on? I was thinking of trying to use an old credit card to push the ink through the screen.

  3. Becky says

    LOVE this technique and tutorial!
    Thanks so much for sharing, this is now on my must do list for sure!
    I can see my kids and I coming up with all kinds ways to play with this!

    B-

  4. Gonna Be His Mrs. says

    This is amazing! I can’t wait to try this myself……so what do you do to reuse the screen? Just rinse under warm water?

  5. Christine ~ JAZ Creations says

    Oh Wow! I Love this! I am going to try this on one of my 7 year old sons designs!

  6. Craftify It! says

    Wow! Modge Podge SCREEN PRINTING!?! I never knew you could do this…

    I think I will have to try!

  7. Jennifer says

    What a great, simple, elegant idea. So many ways to use this and it’d make a great personalized gifts! Thanks.

  8. RecoveryBabe says

    Whoa! This project totally ROCKS! I love the way the shirt turned out… No it’s time for me to be brave… Thanks for sharing.

  9. SisterDG says

    Holy Moly, that’s glorious! My mind reels with possibilities. Thank you so much for this excellent tutorial – I love that it renders screen-printing so accessible and affordable!

  10. Tresa Black says

    So clever! Love it! So wait… if Fabric MP will wash out, can you skip the screen step? Hmmmm….

  11. pfefi says

    ooo this is just like bubzy’s tutorial! ever since i saw that i’ve really been meaning to try it but i don’t know what i would screen print. a snowflake tshirt is a really cute idea though~ n_n

  12. Gail says

    Thanks Amy, I can totally see myself doing this with the kids at school….we already have class sets of embroidery hoops..Great idea!

  13. Lisa says

    Very Nice tutorial! I’ve been playing with the idea of screen printing for some time and I think you may have just solved a problem I was thinking through for a 12×12 challenge quilt. The think I like best about your tutorial is that I have everything but the curtain (easy to get) and the paint – but I know exactly where to buy it AND I have a coupon! Wahoo! It’s nice to know I don’t have to buy a fancy frame or a fancy rubber smoothing thingy. Thanks!

  14. Anonymous says

    Wonder if you could use multiple colors on one design? or would the ink all run together and ruin everything????

  15. says

    Thanks everyone!! And yes, you could do more than one color on one design. Just let the screen printing ink/paint dry before you do the second color (then the third and so on).

  16. says

    Hey everyone!

    Tresa – Fabric Mod Podge doesn’t wash out, it’s washable. So it sticks around after you wash it, which is good if you want to rinse the screen out and use multiple colors!

    To reuse the screen, simply run under warm water and the ink washes out. I ran my hand lightly over it – no need to scrub. If you do use the screen several times, best to touch up the Mod Podge as it will wear down over time.

  17. orange sugar says

    Awesome! I have been wanting to get into screenprinting but it seemed so complicated. Your tutorial just cleared things up. Thanks.

  18. Adriana says

    I would try this… I wanted to print in clothes since I saw that many people uses frezzer paper, but… In México I can’t find this… so… I will try this!!!… great tutorial… thank you so much!!!!

  19. Emily says

    OMG!! This is GREAT!!! I’ve been dying to try screenprinting, but if I buy one more large tool……I might find myself a swingin’ single again (hubby’s not too fond of all my crafting stuff taking over the office :) Thanks!

  20. Kim says

    What a cool idea. The shirt with the flakes on the side/ bottom is very nice.
    @cheapchichome.blogspot.com

  21. PJ says

    You can also use panty hose, if you have any spare laying around or you can get some for like a quarter at WalMart (boo!!) Just take a leg and cut off the toe. Cut up the side and you have more than enough screen to print!

  22. says

    I totally love these, and more of the projects done with the cure-all Mod podge..i have a question though..we do not seem to have it in India..can you tell me if any other company is marketing Mod Podge in India, so that I and several other crafters here can lay our hands on it, too? It will turn in so many new possibilities for crafting, if available here….

  23. Paula says

    Love it! I am going to try it! Very Cool! All I need is the fabric mod podge! Thanks Sew much!

  24. Dora says

    This is awesome. I love screen printing, but have only been able to do one color. I am not very good at creating mutiple screens and over lapping the colors to make a complete picture. I could with this method. You can see through the Mod Podge to line things up. I am excited to try it!

  25. lnwn says

    This is a cool idea but I am wondering how this is beneficial to just making a stencil? I make stencils with flattened out cereal boxes and paint on the fabric paint using the stencil. Does doing it through a “screen” make it looks better somehow?

  26. Katie Jean says

    this is so cool! I wonder if you could put your design on a sheet of sticker paper, cut it out and stick it to the screen and then place the glue around that & peel the sticker off. I’m definitely going to have to try this out!

  27. Katie says

    This sounds awesome! I am trying to figure out how many washes the shirt can go through after screen printing.. I saw that you can cure it with heat after it’s dry.. Have you read anything about it?

  28. Kristabelle says

    This tutrial was brilliant. i just made my nephew an easter shirt using three screens. He loved it thank you

  29. Amber says

    That is very cool, and call me lame but I didn’t even know there was ‘fabric’ mod podge.

  30. Jami says

    This is too cool…I have all of the stuff for it, as I was going to make party tees for one of my son’s b-days, but ran out of time/chickened out. You’ve inspired me to give it a whirl!!
    Thanks for sharing!
    Smiles!!

  31. ★All Thingz Related★ says

    I can not WAIT to try this! Thanks for joining us for Anything Related #14!! ~Bridgette

  32. Andrea on Third Street says

    Okay – brace yourself.

    I’ve never used mod podge before.

    Ever.

    I think I may now, cause this is totally awesome! Thanks so much!!

  33. Wen says

    I JUST DISCOVERED YOUR BLOG AND I ALREADY LOVE IT!! I TOO LOVE MOD PODGE AND HAVE BEEN WANTING TO USE IT WITH WALLPAPER, I JUST HAVEN’T CAME UP WITH THE PERFECT PROJECT. NOW I WANT TO TRY THE TOTE AND T-SHIRT :) THANKS FOR THE GREAT IDEA!!

  34. sheabella says

    I think you can also use pantyhose for the screen as well. I don’t think would be reusable though.
    ;-)

  35. So-N-LoVe2006 says

    Love, Love, LOVE this!! I have been waiting to try this and finally got some time to sit down and give it a shot. Booo hoo! I think i spent wayyy to much on my shower curtain because i had a ton of bubbles :( guess i’ll have to find a new screen material and try again. Thanks so much for sharing this. Great tutorial!

  36. Chris says

    This is so cool! I’ve been interested in screen printing but its always looked like such a lot of work! haha I have too many hobbies!! thanks for the simple method :)

  37. Its So Very Cheri says

    Super Cool. Thanks for sharing Amy. I love it. I have always wanting to try some screen printing.

    Cheri

  38. Leigh says

    Your DIY screen printing is fabulous! It was not only easy to understand and follow, but your fun personality shone through. I thoroughly enjoyed it!

    From Leigh.

    • says

      Hi G – Yes, you can! Though you might have to touch up the Mod Podge in some places depending on how many times you used it/how thick you applied it.

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