How to Make a Silk Screen Stretcher

Written by linda shepard
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How to Make a Silk Screen Stretcher
An embroidery hoop can be used as a silk screen stretcher. (magnifier for embroidery image by Aleksandr Ugorenkov from

A silk screen stretcher is a handy tool used to make multiple prints of an object or message. For small designs, an embroidery hoop makes a quick and inexpensive silk screen stretcher. Use this technique to print T-shirts with a family name or slogan for the next summer reunion gathering, or create your own silk-screened greeting cards.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Paper
  • Pencil
  • Masking tape
  • 14-inch embroidery hoop
  • 1/4-yard nylon netting fabric
  • Scissors
  • Découpage glue
  • T-shirt or napkin
  • Fabric paint
  • Foam paintbrush
  • Iron

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  1. 1

    Draw the message or picture to be printed on the paper.

  2. 2

    Take apart the two pieces of the embroidery hoop. Place the netting fabric over the smaller hoop and put the larger hoop section over it, tightening the screws very securely.

  3. 3

    Cut the excess netting fabric from around the hoop.

  4. 4

    Place the paper with the image on a flat surface under the hoop. Secure the paper and the edge of the hoop to the flat surface with the masking tape.

  5. 5

    Apply découpage glue to all negative space on the fabric netting, leaving the image or letters to be printed clear.

  6. 6

    Let the glue dry for several hours or overnight.

  7. 7

    Place the flat side of the netting over the item that will be printed.

  8. 8

    Apply a small amount of paint with the foam paintbrush with a quick dabbing motion. Select a paint that is appropriate for the surface you will be printing on.

  9. 9

    Let the paint dry thoroughly.

  10. 10

    Heat-set the paint by placing a sheet of paper over the print and ironing for five seconds.

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