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Ashley’s Graphics opens in Tribune

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Story Photo

A popcorn bag, soon to be marked with a bright pink Jackrabbit logo, is stretched across the printing surface at Ashley’s Graphics ahead of the Pink Out volleyball game at Greeley County Schools. Ashley Grubb, owner and designer at Ashley’s Graphics, lays the screen on the bag, squeegies the ink across it, then moves a heat element into place over the design to cure the ink. The process seems simple, straight-forward. But it’s only the final step in the creation in one of the many personalized creations Ashley has been turning out for clients from Tribune to Topeka to Austin since her very first order in April of 2017. “It’s more of an art than a science,” Ashley says as she uses a hand-held thermometer to gauge the temperature being applied to the design. “Too much heat will burn the ink. Too little will not cure the image.” Ashley has long been designing t-shirts for personal and friends’ events, working with Brent Porter of Leoti to do the printing. She credits Brent’s encouragement with sparking her interest in having her own custom apparel shop that offers a full line of customizable products. “Ashley’s Graphics gives me the freedom to do something I thoroughly enjoy,” she says, noting that her business allows her put her college training in graphic and interior design to work while providing independence for her and her family. Offering silk screening, vinyl heat press, and embroidery techniques, Ashley can personalize just about anything. While people’s minds typically lean to t-shirts, hoodies, jackets, and other clothing, baseball hats, gift bags, Koozies, Yeti Cups, and sports uniforms are also possibilities. In addition, she works with a promotional items company that has over one million products available. Ashley does all her own design work in-house, building screens in the dark room using emulsion, screens, and light, from designs she has created. She strives to provide a wide array of shirt types, broadening the options from the typical styles offered. One of her favorite brands is the ultra-soft poly-cotton Bella Canvas. She also has access to a large number of brands including Adidas, Gildan, Dri-Fit, Nike, Calvin Klein, Dry Duck (a Carhartt-type shirt), Next Level, Puma, Storm Tech, Wrangler and more. This new enterprise has breathed new life into the former parts counter at the A.E. Smith Implement building. After adding a wall behind the counter as a partition, new flooring, lighting, ceiling tiles and refinished walls finished out the space. It is now home to store front and display area as well as Ashley’s Ryonet four-station, six-rotary press screening machine. Though current orders are keeping her busy, Ashley looks forward to experimenting with new techniques in the future. “I want to work with hues and shading,” she says. “I’ve been researching half-tones, looking into ways to develop more photographic images.” She also plans to expand her collection of Jackrabbit apparel and enjoys the opportunity to design for a wide-array of activities and events in the local area. Ashley values originality and looks forward to keeping t-shirt designs fresh, offering an element of surprise. Ashley doesn’t keep regular hours at the shop, which is located at 214 Martin in Tribune. For more information or to schedule an appointment, contact Ashley Grubb at (620) 376-8576 or email her at ashleysgraphics.ks@gmail.com. — Christy Hopkins
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