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    Interview: Jon Thom- Print Room New Zealand

    In August 2019, Jon Thom from the Print Room in New Zealand visited the MagnaAcademy at head office to learn more about our products and to learn new printing techniques from our In-house Print Team.

    He sat down with us to chat about his business and using MagnaColours waterbased inks.

Magna: Can you tell me your name, where you’re from and your print shop?

Jon: I’m Jon from the Print Room, Based in Dunedin, New Zealand. We’ve been operating for about five years and have been using MagnaColours inks for about 18 months. 

How long have you been fully water-based? 

About eight months. We changed because we wanted to be more ecologically friendly, and also wanted to be able to achieve softer handprints (feel). Originally we were printing with Plastisol exclusively, and now we are fully water-based printers, using 100% MagnaColours Inks.

How long have you been in the industry for?

Five years. I started a streetwear label while I was at university, and people began approaching us to print shirts for bars and cafes – thinking that we were printing them, but at the time we didn’t.  We learned how to print from watching YouTube videos and we started printing, it’s kind of grown from there.

You mentioned earlier about about wanting to be more ecologically friendly in your print production processes, and that’s why you made the switch to water-based. Was that the main reason for the change?

There are two sides, prints are much better, nicer, crisper and are also softer versus the plastisol we were printing with before.

The other part of it is the ecological side. New Zealand as a country is quite conscious of the environment, people are really aware about what they’re buying. There are quite a few organic garment companies or brands and we often sell organic T-shirts, so why if you’re buying or selling organic T-shirts, why would you slap a plastic print on it?

Also since using MagnaColours products, we have been able to remove a lot of the toxic chemicals that we used when we were plastisol based. Including the cleaning products – there’s no turps or anything like that, its it’s faster to clean up because you’re only hitting it with water.  From a wellbeing and health perspective for my staff it’s been a good switch, and you don’t go home and smell like turps! So that’s good. 

“If you’re buying or selling organic T-shirts, why would you slap a plastic print on it?”

Why have you come to the MagnaAcademy today? 

I have a pretty close working relationship with Jason, we Skype and message, and MagnaColours has given us help if we have run into any technical issues.  It is nice to be able to meet face to face, also its good to learn more about the range of inks, so I know more confidently what I’m selling to my customers. I think it’s always better to see things in the flesh as well.

I’m also visiting a few print shops around England too. Looking at improving our production processes so we can grow the business.

Why were you wanting to learn about printing High Density inks at MagnaAcademy today?

The streetwear market is quite large in New Zealand and we work with quite a few brands already. Large sportswear companies are doing High-density prints at the moment and there aren’t many printers in New Zealand doing this. I wanted to upskill in that area as I hadn’t done it before. It’s a lot easier than I thought it was going to be, which is always good. 

It is a different mindset to print with water-based inks, you’ve got to be pretty onto it compared to the Plastisol. It’s pretty rewarding, and learning with the support and explanation from MagnaColours, means it works right away.

“We’ve definitely grown a lot since we’ve started working with MagnaColours.”

Is support and training that you get from MagnaColours is a benefit to your business? 

Yeah, we had reps in our own country from previous ex-suppliers with not much assistance at all.  I think in terms of our skillset, we’ve been able to grow a lot with MagnaColours’s assistance. 

It’s more than just ink, there’s a lot of experience in the production side, helping us to become more efficient and grow our business. So I think that’s the big difference to other consumables companies that I’ve worked with, they just try to sell you some stuff and that’s where it stops. We’ve definitely grown a lot since we’ve started working with MagnaColours.

All photography courtesy of the Print Room, New Zealand.

For more information on the Print Room, visit their website.

For more information about training at MagnaAcademy and our products, contact your local sales representative or Distributor.