What You Need to Know Now About Digitally Printed Fabric

It’s nearly impossible to work in the print industry and not have heard about the expanding interest in digital textiles. Although digitally printed fabrics make up only 2% of the entire textile marketing, it’s a fast-growing technology. It’s expected to grow from a $14.2 billion industry in 2016 to a $33.4 billion industry by 2021, according to Keypoint Intelligence.

That’s more than doubling the opportunity in five short years. And it could grow even more, with big players like Amazon and Home Depot both entering the textile game in 2018.

As a print service provider, what does that mean to you? More material options with ever-advancing technology, more solutions to offer to your customers and more ways to grow your business. Here are four key points to know now about digitally printed fabric in the wide-format market.

Print to Fabric in One Step with Kornit Allegro

Anyone who has printed to fabric knows that traditional methods include many steps, like pre-treating the fabric, waiting for it to dry, printing, steaming, washing and even more drying time. Our friends at Kornit have streamlined the fabric printing process down to one step: pressing the print button.

Utilizing digital files and its seven-color NeoPigment ink set, the Kornit Allegro print system requires just one operator who can take a digital file to printed fabric in about six minutes; plus, the Allegro outputs 200 square meters per hour to nearly any type of fabric.

“This is a remarkable new system that some of our customers can really use to expand their operation into fabric and décor printing,” says Matt Radauscher, LexJet Enterprise Account Executive. “As consumers and the market seek more on-demand, customizable short-run printing, a system like Kornit Allegro is offering the perfect response.”

The Allegro print technology is ideal for personalized, one-off to high-production of home textiles, fashion, swimwear, and more, and has light- and color-fastness testing lasting up to eight washes. With its patented “fixation on the fly,” Kornit eliminates the need for pre-treatment. “It’s refreshing to see technology that responds to market demand while also eliminating the need for companies to stock massive inventory,” Radauscher says.

The innovative Kornit Allegro’s direct-to-fabric system is the preferred technology for Spoonflower, an online fabric print provider who offers designs for customers with no minimum order. Its fabric production has been so popular that Spoonflower is on its way to purchasing a third Allegro printer. Watch the video below to learn more about Spoonflower’s operation:

Want to learn more about Kornit Allegro? Download this brochure, and give our account executives a call at 800-453-9535.

Dec. 1-31: Save 20% on Your First Vescom Wallcovering Order

For your discerning customers who want high-end, luxurious wallcovering finishes for corporate, healthcare, residential and retail spaces, we’re offering 20% off your first order of any Vescom digital wallcovering finishes throughout the month of December.

Starting Friday, use coupon code VESC20 at checkout, and we’ll take 20% off your first order of Vescom finishes like the soft, lightly textured Vescom Felt, the fine linen emboss of Vescom Tabby, or the SGIA award-winning luster and shine of Vescom Metallic Sand. Visit LexJet.com/Vescom to discover all nine finishes available at LexJet.

All Vescom textures are certified for HP Latex Inks and are considered the “cleanest” vinyl wallcoverings that meet EPA requirements for low-VOC emitting products and are Commercial Grade, Class A Fire Rating, non-phthalate and non-formaldehyde and heavy metal- and antimony-free.

To ensure your get predictable results project after project, Vescom wallcovering is finished with a special top coat that delivers exceptional consistency and a longer shelf life than other PVC wallcoverings on the market. The media is receptive to liquid coating for extra protection, and we recommend Marabu ClearShield Wall Armor.

“Having a product that’s very consistent is a big key for me,” says Mike Speeney of Limitless Walls in King, N.C., who uses Vescom Matte for many customer projects. “The durability is really important so you don’t have ripping or tearing … We try to make sure everything is perfect going out the doors, so when the customer gets it, they go, ‘Wow this is awesome.'”

To learn more about Vescom wallcovering, call a LexJet print specialist at 800-453-9538.

Give Custom Walls Personality with the Right Wallcovering Product

Gone are the days of choosing from a few wallpaper options that may ­– or may not – match your style and personality. Creating custom artwork for your home or office is one of the new trends for wall décor. From kids’ rooms to board rooms, we’ve rounded up a variety of solutions that are tailor-made for you.

Check out some of the ways our customers added personality and life to their wall mural projects:

Wall Murals That Go with the Flo: If you are doing a project that will be displayed for a few months or several years, LexJet Simple Flo Wrap Vinyl, with its air-egress liner and repositionable adhesive, makes installation a breeze. When John Toth from Triad Creative Group was tasked with bringing the past to the present, he opted for Simple Flo – laminated with LexJet Simple Flo Wrap Gloss UV Laminate (2.4 Mil). For this project, some of the murals were displayed on different substrates, including primed MDF and Sintra, while others were applied directly to the display walls. Toth knew that the applications would be bubble-free due to the air-egress liner and that the repositionable adhesive would allow him to fix any misaligned panels during installation. The wide color gamut of the Simple Flo contributed to the authenticity of the project by bringing out subtle nuances in the historical images.

Vescom Digital Media: Wallcovering Line Now Available at LexJet

For busy print service providers, media consistency is key. And that couldn’t be truer when it comes to printable wallcovering. The print runs are large, and décor-level quality is highly scrutinized. At LexJet, we’re excited to now offer Vescom Digital Media, some of the highest-grade and most environmentally sound PVC vinyls on the market.

A restaurant wall mural printed by Limitless Walls

Early users have been impressed with the production quality and consistency. “Having a product that’s very consistent is a big key for me,” says Mike Speeney of Limitless Walls in King, N.C., which prints up to 40 wall murals a week for commercial clients, designers and architects, and the general public.

“The durability is really important so you don’t have ripping or tearing,” Speeney says. “And, we’ve been using the Vescom Matte because you don’t want a glare with light bouncing back in your face like you would with a gloss finish.”

Café Décor Redux: Honoring Marc Chagall’s Vision

When Marie Selby Botanical Gardens in Sarasota, Fla., decided to renovate its café, the designers wanted to pay homage to painter Marc Chagall’s dreamy vision of life and the quaint French town where he spent his final years. The redesign was timed with the gardens’ exhibit, Marc Chagall, Flowers, and the French Riviera: The Color of Dreams.

Known as the “City of Arts,” Saint Paul de Vence attracted artists of all types with its charm. The town’s Colombe d’Or Hotel & Restaurant was the inspiration for Selby Garden’s cafe revamp.

The café’s original wall décor included a series of framed botanical prints in dark, heavy frames. The re-design team removed the dated-looking prints and opted for a full wall mural, with a subtle backdrop of Saint Paul de Vence, France, overlaid with carefully selected Chagall quotes that captured his sensitive and introspective insights.

Working with print service provider, Now That’s a Wrap, the Selby team chose to cover the interior and exterior walls with LexJet Simple Flo Wrap Vinyl and Simple Flo Wrap Gloss UV laminate. The team also mimicked Chagall’s stained glass work by printing extra-saturated graphics on optically clear vinyl with an over-laminate, all mounted to plexiglass.

Watch the video above to see how the café’s new look came to life.