Although all of our inks are water-resistant, the best way to look after your Print & Press fabrics is to dry clean them, and we always recommend this for all of our fabric types. If you are printing your fabrics to sell, we would suggest you try different washing techniques before you find one you are happy to recommend to your customers. In our experience, ‘dry clean’, and ‘gentle hand wash’ work best.
If you do want to wash your fabrics in water, we would suggest the following steps:
- Iron the reverse of your fabric at the hottest suitable temperature for at least 20 seconds.
- Pin the printed side of your fabric to a piece of calico/an old towel/an old sheet, etc (something that will stop the print from rubbing and folding on itself in the wash). If this isn’t practical then turn your item inside out and/or put it into a cloth drawstring bag to keep it separate from other items.
- Don’t use fabric softener, or any phosphates (brighteners) in your washing powder.
- For best results, gently hand wash in luke warm water, taking care not to rub the print against itself (if you have pinned it against another piece of fabric then this won’t be a problem). As you can see, fabric washed like this came out looking almost identical to our control fabric, and should give you near perfect results:
- If you need to use hotter temperatures, or don’t have time to hand wash, then your print should be happy in a washing machine at 30 degrees, as long as you have followed steps 1-3. Below is our control fabric next to fabric that was ironed, pinned and machine washed at 30, and it still looks pretty good:
Our fabrics are not pre-washed, and will shrink slightly when washed for the first time. If you are using your fabric to make clothes, or anything else that will need to be washed, remember to wash and dry it first before you start cutting or sewing.
If you want more information, we’ve written a blog post about our very thorough wash tests.