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what is sim process?
min read

what is sim process?

Ever wonder what simulated process screen printing is? Here at Real Thread we discuss how this method blends spot colors with halftones and gradients.

If you have a photograph that you want to print on a shirt, odds are it will be printed using sim process. Due to the high count of colors in a photograph, a screen-printer needs to simulate all of those colors using just a handful of inks. The benefit of printing sim process designs using water based and discharge inks is that you won’t be able to feel the print on the shirt. Most other printers who default to printing with plastisol ink will need to lay down a base and then print even more ink top of that base layer of ink to achieve successful simulated process screen printing.

Photo? Check. Seps? Check. Now it’s time to decide what shirt colors you should have your design printed on? White will always work best. However, if you choose shirt colors that discharge well, such as black or navy, you will still get a fantastic print result. Simulated Process screen printing will work great on both light and dark garment colors.

In order to successfully print a sim process job, the design will first need to be separated. The separation process will allow screen-printers to get all of the needed colors onto their own screens. All of the red ink halftones will end up on one screen, all of the green ink halftones will end up on one screen, and so forth.  The separation process usually costs about $100 - $200 depending on the complexity of the design. The benefit to having separations done is that once you pay for them, they’re on file in our art database. That means when you come back to reorder the same design, you won’t have to pay a separation fee again. 


Simulated Process screen printing has been growing in popularity over the past few years. If you’re thinking about using this print method on apparel, let us help you get the best print possible with our water based and discharge inks. Visit www.realthread.com today to start planning your next project!