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How are you going to price your garments when you are a commercial screen-printer.

When you are a commercial screen printer, you need to come up with some kind of pricing schedule or pricing chart so that when you price different jobs with different customers.

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Consequently, you don’t want your customers in end coming together and charge you that they have paid more than the other for the same thing.

So, it is a good idea to have some kind of pricing chart to figure out your pricing in a standard manner.

Note: It is difficult to estimate accurate pricing because the pricing for screen printing can vary greatly depending on where you are, i.e. your location.

For instance, if you stay in the state of New York, you charge more for the same print job as compared to the one who stays in Arizona.

So, your geographical region can greatly affect the pricing for screen printing.

Advice:- You can call around for different printing shops and act as a customer to get an idea of what people are charging in the area for that particular print job.

Now once you have called around and got an idea of what other screen printers in your area are charging for that print job, the next thing you have to do is compare that to the cost of the garment that you are supplying for the print job.

Four Steps To Calculate Pricing In Screen Printing:

In screen printing, there is a lot of labor involved. So, in order to come to a profit margin where you can make enough money per hour on the job that makes you happy, especially when you are a small start-up screen printing operator.

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01. Monthly Expenses:

The first thing we have to put it in is monthly expenses like rent, electricity, internet, insurance, equipment, admin overhead and that be yourself or your partner.

Estimate the number of shirts that you print in a given month. This model always changes depending on your volume.

monthly expenses

So starting with rent. If you are out of your house, I would always suggest you associate a part of your house to rent.

Let’s say your rent is $450 a month. Electricity expenses figure out what costs you to run your business. Let’s say it is $80.

Then your phone/internet costs around $130 for your cell phone, internet.

Let’s say your insurance costs $120.

Well, if you don’t have any screen printing equipment then you take it on a lease that costs around $170 if it has a manual set-up.

Most importantly the administration expenses. If you are printing yourself or there are people around you do your work, say labor cost $3300.

And lastly some overhead expenses like your lawyer or accountant or payroll service. etc.

02. Job Specifications:

job specificationStarting with a two-color screen printing machine, and print 180 t-shirts in a job. If you are pretty fast at printing, then you are going to print 150 shirts per hour.

You need two screens. If you are buying a new screen, it will cost you around $27.

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Then you have a labor or you are hiring somebody then you get to pay $24 an hour. You get to associate some taxes and overhead with that.

Let’s say you want to make $25 an hour. So we write $25 on the list.

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Then your shirt costs, probably a blank t-shirt with nothing fancy makes $2.

Finally, your ink cost. You may assume that your inks cost $0.10/shirt.

This gives you some sub-totals like how many hours per shirt, labor per shirt, pre-press, etc.

sub-total per shirtSo, in total, you incur approx. $6.65 for printing a t-shirt.

03. Profits:

What kind of profitability you want to make on your t-shirt printing job.

Let’s say you want a profit margin of 65%. That means you should sell a t-shirt at $10.

profitsWhen you are printing a t-shirt you charge an extra amount, quite a lot when you are screen printing. Involving cost per screen, ink and most importantly your profit, you may charge $55 for screen printing.

Estimating your gross sales to be $1600 and the cost incurred for t-shirts is $900. Therefore you earn a profit of $700 selling custom t-shirts through screen printing.

04. Ink Consumption and Profit Margin:

If you are finding that you are running through ink, emulsion, consumables and you may be spending more and more on consumables than making profits from print jobs.

A lot of people don’t understand the importance of using metal screens as opposed to wooden screens. One of the reasons is that metal screens are aluminum screens that can hold a higher mesh tension.

When you have higher mesh tension you are going to print a higher quality print with less ink.

Contrastingly, if you are using a wooden screen with mesh that’s loose and not tight as in the case of metal screens, then you are using more ink than you need to.

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A loose mesh screen prints more ink than what is necessary.

If you are using more consumables like ink, solvents, etc, then you are going to lower your profit margin.

At the bottom line, if consumables are an issue for you better look at your pricing and consumable usage.


Besides the above calculation sample, you can use the internet or web to look at the screen printers website in your area. A lot of have published prices on their websites and you can go into the stores where they can give you a pricing list.

It is difficult to advise you particular pricing because, as previously said, it is the geographical region that greatly influences your pricing.

Lastly, do your research, don’t be afraid to call around and ask questions. Refer to the above pricing methodology. It is definitely going to help you a lot while framing your list.

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