AC Milan Stilscreen Review
by Enrique Mendoza Jr.
Stilscreen, an Italian company, has been producing heat transfers for over thirty years. They manufacture thousands of different brands for thousands of different uses, but perhaps their most well-known product is their heat transfers for names and numbers of football clubs. In Italy alone, Stilscreen produces the customization options, such as the player details on the back of a jersey, for the big three, AC Milan, Inter Milan, and Juventus, and even more teams regionally. They even produce the heat transfers for Barcelona, FC Sion, and other clubs around the world, even national teams!
I have the opportunity here to take an in-depth look at the details of Stilscreen heat transfers, in this case, the 2012-2013 AC Milan heat transfers produced for the jerseys. I have had many jerseys with Stilscreen printing on the back and I can confidently say that their work is stunning. MMSports has many of Stilscreen jerseys in stock and here is an overview of just one of many shirts you can enjoy with some professional, quality printing.
Every year, the design of jersey printing, such as font, outline, and color, changes for most teams. In the case of AC Milan, their home jersey always sports white text with a black outline. What does change is the visual style of the name and number. In the 10/11 season, Stilscreen produced a sharper, more straightforward design; last year, the text was bubbly and rounded; this year, they have gone for a thinner, nobler look.
The jersey in my possession is that of Kevin Prince Boateng. He now sports the number 10 rather than 27. The letters are a little bit taller and thinner than that of previous years, and the number has the same changes. All of the characters are spaced in an organized way and it just looks great, no matter which player you choose to adorn. The same thin black outline of previous years is here and it always helps smooth the look of the white text on the red and black shirt design.
Like last year, the expressive amount of white on the home jersey helps make the printing match even more, as well as the “Fly Emirates” sponsor on the front of the shirt. Of the heat transfers seen from Milan in recent years, I probably rank this one as the best in terms of appeal. Last year’s printing, with rounded, fat characters, was nice, but I find it less compatible with its respective jersey compared to the current text. I think the new font helps match the more refined look of the jersey; it brings about a sense of pride and nobility. I feel that Milan as a city is embedded within the new text design, and it feels just right.
Stilscreen’s production quality, in my opinion, has always set the bar for the printing sector. The printing on the new AC Milan jersey follows the trend. The printing quality is perfect; there are no flaws, no uneven edges or unruly spaces. You can hold up a ruler to ends of the text and you will find everything neatly aligned. The color and contrast levels, though I understand that in the case of this shirt it is just black and white, are clean and accurate. To the touch, the text is strongly attached to the jersey, without creating any bubbles or deficiencies beneath. Though at first you will be hesitant to place the jersey down awkwardly, you will find that the Stilscreen printing is strong and not so vulnerable. So long as you do not abruptly rub the heat-transferred text against something with a rough texture, you will not have an issue being stubborn with it. I have had many shirts over the years, not jerseys mind you, with designs that faded or became disrupted over time. On the other hand, I have quite a few Stilscreen shirts, some of which are almost five years old, and they look as good as new, even though they go through some vigorous use on occasion.
It is easy for me to say that the quality of Stilscreen heat transfer is superb and it shows in Milan’s new jersey as well as that of the other clubs that Stilscreen supplies.
One of the most important values of printing on jerseys, no matter the method of transfer, is the feel. Now, I do not mean how it feels to touch, I mean how it feels to wear. It is never any good when you put on a player-customized jersey and find that the name or number on the back feels uncomfortable or disjointed as you move.
The Stilscreen heat transfer on Milan’s new home jersey is very good. Last year, with the font that covered much more space and was rounded, you could feel the printing on your back and shoulders. It was not such a big deal, but with the new, more refined font, it is noticeably easier to move about without feeling the printed text shift with your every movement. I have worn this and other Milan Stilscreen jerseys for some time and I would consider this to be the ideal feel. The printing quality means that you will not have to worry about ripping or splitting the text with the movements of the shirt, and I really do think that you have to go out of your way to damage it significantly.
Stilscreen is a very experienced company; through years and years of creating and designing heat transfers for, among other clients, football clubs, Stilscreen can easily be considered among the best. Their latest venture in AC Milan’s jersey is as good as ever. Their new font is better for comfort and more attractive with the shirt’s design, the text feels a little bit thinner than in previous years and allows more comfort, and the quality and build of the heat transfer and the adhesive are top class.
If you worry about getting customization on a Stilscreen affiliate, such as AC Milan or Barcelona, take this review to heart. The name and number of your favorite player have a lot of value and you can trust an industry veteran like Stilscreen to make a stunning display on your jersey, just as you see on the field.