A beautiful and ancient craft, screen printing first appeared in China about a thousand years ago. It is something I have always wanted to try but seemed out of my reach due to the costly equipment and intricacies of the art. I was therefore delighted when I was given the opportunity to try out the new Screen Sensation screen printing system.
What is Screen Sensation?
Screen Sensation is an at home screen printing system that makes beautiful screen printed designs at home accessible to everyone. It allows users to print on to a variety of surfaces including paper, fabric, glass and card. With a vast range of screens available to complement the kit it really does make this beautiful art far more streamlined and achievable to the home crafter and DIYer.
We were sent the Screen Sensation 12x12 Kit to try. Included in the box was…
- Frame, featuring 24cm square aperture.
- Squeegee, precisely sized to the screen ensuring you get an even coverage across the whole of your design.
- Palette Knife, perfectly shaped to allow you to transfer your chosen ink directly from the Ink Pot or Mixing Bowl to the surface of your screen.
- 10 Wooden Mixing Tools, which allow you to thoroughly mix a range of colours of your choice by combining different ink colours.
- Mixing Bowl shaped to allow you to quickly mix and thin down your inks and then transfer to the surface of your screen. The bowl also folds flat to minimise storage room.
How you use the Screen Sensation
Using the Screen Sensation is super simple. You merely tape your chosen screen design to the frame ensuring it is nice and taught. The structure then slots into the Screen Sensation, and you are ready to go. To provide a good result, the manufacturers recommend priming the screen first by starting with a test print. This allows you to check your design on a scrap piece of paper first before printing on to your final medium.
Stir your chosen ink and place an even layer across the top edge of your screen. Holding the squeegee at a 45-degree angle drag the ink down across the screen maintaining an even pressure and then scoop up any excess ink and return back to the pot.
Open up your Screen Sensation and admire your first print - ours was the 'You're Pawesome' print above. Spoiler: This is the moment you will totally fall in love with the process and start hunting around the house for items to print on to – you have been warned!
Once you have mastered the basics (which literally only takes one print), You can start mixing it up a bit. You can use any of the screens that don't have lettering or numbering on them either way around to reverse the design. You can mix colours together to produce multi-tone effects. You can mask off parts of the screen to print different colour layers or to use just elements of the design. The kit really is adaptable. To see more details about the kit or to watch videos of it in action please check out the Screen Sensation website.
What we Thought!
My daughter and I have totally fallen in love with the Screen Sensation. The minute we saw the first print we were hooked! The kit is far easier to use than I expected and my ten-year-old daughter finds it as easy to use as me. The print quality is fantastic, with perfectly crisp outlines and no smudging or bleeding and we love that you can print onto so many different surfaces. We are currently waiting for a whole range of plain tote bags, cushion covers, leggings and T-shirts to arrive so my daughter can make herself a new summer wardrobe plus her end of year teacher appreciation gifts with her own custom prints.
Cleaning is simple, just rinse in cold water with the ink being safe to wash down the drain. We haven’t actually got any on our clothes yet (which is a miracle in itself!), but until the ink is heat set, it should wash easily out of clothes. We will share our screen printing a new wardrobe adventure with you and test out how the ink washes before and after being heat set then.
The Screen Sensation kit is available from Crafting.co.uk and costs £89.99. With the inks retailing at £7.99 and the screens ranging from £12.99 to £17.99 for the various sizes. My regular readers will know that it is rare for me to promote crafts that involve a financial outlay, but in the case of the Screen Sensation, I feel the system really does offer excellent value for money. This is not a toy but a handy piece of equipment that should last for years and has so much potential. You could even start a little home business using this piece of kit, and it will undoubtedly take care of all your card, wrapping paper and present needs.
Screen Sensation have kindly offered us a unique discount code so that you can enjoy 25% of any Screen Sensation purchase at Crafting.co.uk. To take advantage of this offer enter SSBL25-FL7UI at the checkout!
Disclosure: We were sent the Screen Sensation Home Screen Printing System for the purpose of this review.