One of the first things that anyone who works with SUBLIMATION should know is that the type of fabric used is fundamental to the quality of the process.
But, how to know which fabric for sublimation is ideal?
Those who work in the area already have an idea that fabrics are formed by interlaced fibers and are divided into fabrics of natural fibers, fabrics of synthetic fibers, artificial fibers and fabrics with mixed fibers.
When choosing the fabric for sublimation, it is always good to remember that synthetic fiber fabrics are the ones that best lend themselves to this type of printing.
To know how to recognize the ideal fabrics, it is not the name of the fabric that matters, but the amount of polyester it is made of.
Types of Fabric for Sublimation Printing
After all, in sublimation of prints, for the colors to be more vivid, the 100% polyester fabric is ideal.
But, you won’t be able to work only with this type of fabric. Flexibility is needed.
So, pay attention to the PP, PA and PV fabrics (don’t be alarmed, they are not political parties, but acronyms).
PP (polypropylene) fabrics are composed of 100% polyester and, when processed, gain a greater fit, more shine and a soft touch. Two of its main advantages are: it doesn’t knead and forms fewer balls. That’s why it’s used a lot in the decoration of events.
PA or piquet knitted fabrics are those composed of 50% polyester and 50% cotton, such as helanca light, known as helanquinha or cacharrel, widely used in sporting goods and polo-type blouses. Fiber blending becomes very good because one cancels out the negative side of the other. Polyester alone heats up too much, cotton alone can shrink and warp. For sublimation, this type of fabric leaves the print more washed, due to the low amount of polyester, but it can be used for specific applications that do not require very long durability as a promotional material.
Polyviscose, PV or cold knit is a fabric composed of 67% polyester and 33% viscose, ideal for school uniforms, as it is a softer knit, which hardly shrinks or fades, and can go through several washes without problems. For this reason, it is also widely used for sports uniforms, especially for football teams. In these fabrics, the sublimation result is not so perfect, because the colors of the print are less vivid.
Neopreme: This fabric features high flexibility, elasticity, resistance and thermal protection. Due to its versatility, it has been gaining prominence in the manufacture of gifts, accessories, bags and water sports clothing.
It is still possible to work sublimation with PET type fabric, which is used for making or decoration. This fabric is made from recycled PET bottles, from which artificial fibers are produced, and may even have a certain percentage of cotton, making it a fabric of mixed fibers, and gaining greater drape.
More sustainable companies have demanded the use of this fabric in the production of their uniforms, gifts and promotional material. Some more innovative brands are also launching products in this fabric to attract the public more connected with sustainability.
We remind you here that, for the visual quality of the image to be good in the sublimation of prints, the higher the percentage of synthetic fabric, the better it will be.
Is polyester only good for sublimation?
There are several options in the textile market for sublimation on fabric. Polyester is the most suitable because using the print is very vivid and well defined. We also have to think that materials, techniques and paints are directly linked to the final finish of the piece.
Besides polyester, what can I use?
Polyester is the main component of synthetic fabrics and it is widely used because it is the one that best transfers the dye to the fiber. Helanca, taffeta, PP fabric, chiffon, tactel, oxford, satin, microfiber, organza, muslin, crepe and gazar are some examples of fabrics that have a high percentage of polyester in their composition, which guarantees an impeccable image full of colors. .
Sublimation on fabrics offers a range of options to be carried out, especially for those who want to produce something personalized.
Sublimation and fabric dubbing
Fabric doubling is a process commonly used in the manufacture of various pieces. It provides more structure and firmness to the tissues.
We can find it in bedding, bags, shoes and coats, among other products.
The different dubbing techniques aim to meet the needs of each producer and their material.
Sublimated fabrics can go through the dubbing process without any compromise to the quality of the print.
There is also the possibility of making the process in a 100% polyester fabric (microfiber) and sewing, using the patchwork technique (application) with another material.
When producing your pieces with sublimation, choose the right fabric for your needs. Talk to your supplier.
Conclusion on sublimation fabrics
Choosing the right fabric is strategic for your sublimation business, as they all have their strengths and weaknesses.