Guide to Branded Apparel Screen Printing Costs

There are many variants that affect the cost of printing on a garment and it can get quite confusing. I've had people in the past send me a design with many colors only to find out the cost was exorbitant.  

That is why I wanted to put together this guide to educate on all the costs that go into determining how much your screen printing will cost. 

Printing on Branded Merchandise

1. Color of Garment Matters

when printing a light color on a dark garment (let's say white print black top) in order for the white to show up well you need a white underlay (more screens, more time) so the price goes up. 

2. Fabric Content Matters

This one is unavoidable because most fabrics nowadays are a Polyester Cotton blend. it is $.80 extra, but worth it if you don't want 100% Cotton (fades quicker, shrinks, wrinkles easier) and most times you don't even know your paying that extra fee. 

3. Quantity Matters

This one is perhaps the most well know cost factor. the more you order the cheaper the price will be. Simple! 

4. Number of Colors Matter

The more colors printed the pricier the print will be. Here's why. Because there is one screen per a color. so every time you need to change the color in the artwork you need to take off the screens put the new ones on, cure the first color print to the shirt and then put them back carefully onto the screen so that they line up to the first print. Lots of work. 

5. Size of print Matters

Because bigger prints use more paint they will cost more. generally it's priced as a 4" x 4? (left chest, back yoke, sleeve) or 12" x12" (full front or full back)

6. Location Matters

Each garment needs to be laid onto the screen printing machine manually. back or front logo is pretty simple, but when it comes to prints over pockets, hoods, or zippers it takes time to properly lay out the garment on the machine. More time = more price. 

Does it cost more to change shirt colors?

Surprisingly no. you can have a mix of red, green blue whatever color you want as long as the print stays the same size and color. if we need to change color it's a $20 color change charge. 

Ending Notes

So to tally it all up, the most inexpensive print will be a white cotton shirt with a left chest logo in black - the more pieces the better.  that's not to say we can't do the multi color prints, however sometimes we may suggest a digital print instead especially if the shirt has lots of gradients or an actual photo as artwork. 


If you have any further questions or would like a quote on branded Apparel please email us at

Screen Printing Branded Merchandise

    Image of a screen printing machine. all the t-shirts have to be laid out on the screen and the print goes around pressing ink into all the screens to get the print onto the shirt.