It can be frustrating to know that your favorite screenprint is finally aging and showing signs of wear.
While there is no one way to fix this issue, I have found great success in the following process. If you do try this out, perhaps try it first on something that isn’t as dear to you just so that you get any errors out of the way on that piece.
- First, assess the damage. This is pretty simple to do, simply see if there is any peeling or if the ink is simply cracked. In this example, there was a mix of the damage.
2. Prepare your garment for reparations. If you notice the ink is cracked, use a preparer to take off the protective layer of the ink. A helpful tip is to place tape around the design and on areas that you do not want the ink to smear onto. This is because using a preparer can cause the ink to smear. For this example, I used Angelus Leather Preparer and Deglazer, but Nail Polish Remover works all the same. If there is more peeling than cracking, you may want to use a smooth sandpaper and gently rub off the excess ink that is peeling. In this example, I used 600 grit sandpaper as well, but only did very light swipes with it.
3. Once the garment is prepped, you will need to make sure that the ink you will be using is the same color so that it does not awkwardly stick out. Once you figure that out, you will need to mix it with GAC 900. I have seen people simply lay the ink on, but for safe measures I like to create a mix of both. My ratio is 3:1, so for every 3 ounces of ink I mix 1 ounce of GAC 900. In this case, I also added a hint of paint to darken the ink but it was not enough to impact the ratio. If you do mix the ink with some paint, be sure to mix it well with a paintbrush to ensure the ink sitting at the bottom of your container is also mixed.
4. Then, apply the ink onto your garment with a paintbrush. It is generally the same concept as painting. A good tip is to put a cardboard surface between the back and front of the garment to make sure the ink does not bleed through to the other side.
5. Give it time to cure. This should take about an hour and a half but lightly dab the garment to see if it is finally dry.
6. After, do small touch-ups around your design if there are any you need to make.
7. And that, in a nutshell, is how you reapply ink onto older, cracked screen-prints. It really brings those older screen-prints back to life without having to break the bank. I hope this was helpful!