Silk fabric printing which is also known as digital fabric printing is the process of applying coloured patterns and designs onto fabric. In this type of page, one or more colours are printed on the material in sharply defined patterns in certain parts. To prevent the structure from getting affected by washing and friction, the colours are usually affixed to the fibre.
Types of silk fabric printing
There are several different types of silk fabric printing. They work on different fabric types that best suits for various purposes. They offer varying printing qualities on different types of fabric. Among the different silk fabric printing types, the most popular and essential types are,
· Direct printing,
· Discharge printing
· Resist printing.
Direct printing: Printing directly on to the surface of the fabric with dyes and fabric colours is called direct printing.
Discharge printing: The process of removing certain colours from specific areas from an already dyes fabric by using appropriate chemicals is called discharge printing.
Resist printing: The process involving the application of a special resist paste on to the fabric in specific patterns and then dyeing the fabric later so that the area where the past is applied will resist dyeing and will appear as the base colour.
· Batik printing: It is a method of applying wax-resist dyeing paste.
· Tie and Dye printing: It is a method of dyeing by hand.
The printing as mentioned above types are classic examples of resist printing.
Silk fabric printing techniques
Printing on to the fabric involves a variety of fabric printing techniques, where the important ones are discussed below:
· Engraved roller printing
The printing type involves the process of applying dye to the fabric, which is then passed through the design engraved rollers in the printing machine. For different colours, different rollers are used. After the fabric has been printed, it undergoes the process of drying and steaming to set the dye. The significant advantage of this printing type is that it provides high-quality printing compared to other brands.
· Screen printing
The process of printing by which a certain screen is used to transfer patterns on to the fabric is called screen printing. It involves the use of a porous mesh screen, stretched over a frame. In screen printing, a stencil of the design is made out of porous nylon fabric. The areas which do not have prints are covered, and then the screens are placed on the fabric, and a wooden squeegee is used to work on the colour through the porous screen on to the fabric. The major advantage of using this printing technique is that you can print the light and dark coloured fabrics with the same intensity.
Types of screen printing
The two types of screen printing are,
· Flatbed screen printing
· Rotary screen printing
· Spray printing
This printing technique uses specialized sprayers to transfer the dye on to the fabric material. They usually use a spray gun to force the colour on to the fabric through screens.
· Printing with Inkjet printers and DTG printing
This is a simple homemade version of printing on to fabric material using ordinary inkjet printers. The DTG (Direct to Garment digital printing) printing technique uses individual inkjet printers with special ink to print on a fabric material directly from the computer.
· Heat transfer printing
This type of printing uses a printing machine along with a heat press machine to transfer the designs on to the fabric. This is one of the cheapest printing techniques where the design is printed on a paper first later, which the design on the paper is transmitted to the fabric material by passing it through hot rollers.
Thus, silk fabric printing has been widely accepted by most of the costume-lovers because of its seamless and classy looks.