Heidi Swapp Screen print kit

Screen printing with the Heidi Swapp kit

Screen printing with the Heidi Swapp kit

I LOVE a good craft kit – something where pretty much all of the materials to get started are included so I can try something out with a low commitment.

I did some screen printing in school, and LOVED it – but it is pretty involved with a number of tools needed, so when I saw the Heidi Swapp screen printing kit at Michael’s I thought I’d give it a whirl.

The kit comes with three self-adhesive small “screens” (no frames), some washi tape, two tubes of paint, a scraper, and a set of (limited) instructions. The box kind of looks like it will include a mini memory-book, but it doesn’t. The kit says that the screens are good to use on fabric, paper, metal, and more.

I started with a screen with a map – on paper. I found that the lines of the map were far too fine to show up well on the paper, so this screen isn’t particularly useable. Since the design is edge-to-edge, I used the washi tape to build a wall around the screen. The tape unfortunately damaged the paper mildly – so for the subsequent screens I didn’t use the washi tape.

The next two screens have text, with nice thick lines. I used these first on paper, with good results in the printing, but BAD results with the paper damage issue again – the self-adhesive screen also damaged the paper.

Close up on the screen printed paper - you can see the damage around the "h".

Close up on the screen printed paper – you can see the damage around the “h”.

Third, I tried the screens on fabric… with MUCH better results. However, I don’t know how the paint will hold up through washing. That will remains to be seen after I heat-set the paint, and give the fabric a test-wash! I do LOVE the colour blending on the paper version much better though, and would like to repeat that again on fabric.

Screen printing on paper (left) and fabric (right)

Screen printing on paper (left) and fabric (right)

So… I wouldn’t recommend using the self-adhesive screens on paper… though on a painted wall they’d probably be great. The find “texture” screens seem way too fine detail to work well, but the big, chunky designs with lots of open space seem to work really well! They’re not quite the same as designing my own pattern and making a screen print of my own, but it was a fun craft to get my screen-printing fix again, and I’ll likely make up a few little things (with fabric…) before the screens lose their adhesion.

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