Digital printing opportunities for interior fabrics

Digitally printed fabrics provide a world of opportunities for home interior applications.

Mass production may have been the hallmark of the retail and design industry, but consumers are ditching what they see as ‘cookie-cutter’ products and using interior designers to help them create one-of-a-kind furnishings and accessories for their homes. In turn, these designers seek unique solutions for their clients.

Many of them, however, either don’t consider or don’t know about digitally printing on fabric—an option that can provide many opportunities for the end user, from homeowners to interior designers and artists.

This is an artist’s dream to be able to design something original, and then have it produced in a form they can use at home. This opportunity has never been there before without being backed by a large company or contracted for a big swatch.

The end users are looking for a unique style in home interiors. They can use something they have designed, a photographic image that they like or a specialty look that doesn’t come from a stock wall covering.

The immediacy of digital printing is what’s appealing for creating custom furniture or drapery pieces. Digitally printed fabrics are much more on-demand. Setup time is shorter than screening and any changes can be made quickly. The print shops and end product manufacturers benefit, too. “If you’re digitally printing for a client,” Terramagra says, “you don’t have to stock rolls of fabric that no one is going to use.”

Even leather is starting to make headway in the digital printing market. Anything you can design or capture digitally you can put on leather now.

Print shops can sell digitally printed fabrics as a more sustainable product than screen-printed output. Digitally printable fabrics for the home interiors market can open new doors for print shops and end product manufacturers. People don’t want to walk into their neighbor’s house and see the same piece of furniture that they have. We need to deliver a customized product as cost effectively as possible.”

It’s an outlook that can serve the industry well as it defines ways to tap into the home interiors market.

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