The History of Screen Printing

screen printing MAWe have all seen materials that promote a particular business.  But have you ever stopped to think about the process of getting the company name or logo onto the product? Whether it be a polo shirt or backpack, screen printing in MA is a favorite go-to for business advertising.  Screen printing is a method of printing where a mesh is used to transfer ink. However, the process was not always seamless and readily available.

Early Origins

Screen printing is believed to have originated in China somewhere between 960-1279CE during the Song Dynasty.  Although some historians show “processes” back to the caveman, the Song Dynasty most resembles the beginning of modern-day techniques.  The process was then slowly adapted throughout other Asian countries, particularly Japan. 

It was not until the late 1700s that screen printing made its way into European countries.  The slow growth can be attributed to the lack of available product.  Because of slow trade with the East, and hard to acquire materials, screen printing was costly and extremely time-consuming.    

Modern Day

In 1907 a man by the name of Samuel Simon officially patented a screen-printing technique.  Although it was still a costly technique, it grew in popularity.  Because of the high cost, screen-printing during this time was mainly used by the wealthy.  The printing of high-quality wallpaper was a luxury that not many could afford but caught the eye of all. 

However costly, popularity and interest sparked.  This new-found printing technique caused more and more people to experiment. Thus, around 1910, a group of three gentlemen revolutionized the commercial screen printing process by introducing photo-imaged stencils.  Roy Beck, Charles Peter, and Edward Owens can be called the founders of modern-day screen-printing.

The 1960s truly brought screen-printing to mainstream America.  Once considered a trade secret, the techniques were now available and known to all interested.  Popularity sky-rocketed when the famous artist, Andy Warhol, incorporated screen-printing into his work.  The hugely popular rendition of Marilyn Monroe is one of the most famous works coming from the pop art culture.  Hence, the eye of the public was truly opened to screen printing.

Although it was a prolonged process, popularity furthered interest.  In 1967, Michael Vasilantone patented a multicolor garment screen printing machine.  The machine was designed for the printing of logos onto bowling garments.  Particularly onto t-shirts, the industry boomed. 


Providing your company with all of their logo wear needs, consider Greco Graphics for your screen printing in MA.  Offering a variety of products from t-shirts to mouse pads they are a full-service company with decades of experience.  Contact Greco Graphics today at (978) 663-9122 or visit them online to see what they can do for you!