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  • 03/13/2020

Fabric Dye Process: Dyeing, Shrinkage & Sustainability

Fabric Dye Process: Dyeing, Shrinkage & Sustainability

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If you’re going to produce a new garment that will be colored with dye, you should know that fabrics that go through a dyeing process will shrink. Have you accounted for this alteration? Our Project Managers got your back! They will prep the clothing during a shrinkage process.

As a designer, this is so important because your customers want to buy products that they can wash confidently knowing it’s going to last a long time. Some areas to look at when trying to enhance the dimensional stability of your garment are the fiber content being used as well as any finishes added to the garment.


The garment dyeing process is crucial to maintaining color consistency. The process involves submerging fibers, yarns, or even entire rolls of fabric in a solution of water, dye, and mordant, which is a chemical that bonds dye to the fabric. Once the dye has adhered to the textile, it is rinsed to get rid of any liquid or impurities. While textile dyeing is a common procedure, it is also possible to dye garments after they have already been assembled. However, this approach can be complicated if there are multiple fabrics being used since each fabric will absorb and react to dyes differently.

Many custom hoodies and custom shirts are garment dyed to offer a wide variety of colors without having to produce as many units. Acrylic fibers are dyed with basic dyes, while nylon and protein fibers such as wool and silk are dyed with acid dyes, and polyester yarn is dyed with disperse dyes. Cotton is dyed with a range of dye types, including vat dyes, and modern synthetic reactive and direct dyes. To meet the needs of fashion brands and help them succeed in the competitive marketplace, we’ve developed flexible programs for sample development and volume production. We work with over 60 local vendors in LA to source and create your ideal fabric.

Accounting for Development Sample SHRINKAGE

Edybel, the assigned Project Manager working with the client to create the clothing line, reviews the development sample. The pant which starts off as an off-white, is transformed with the use of a natural dye, to a khaki.First, Edy measures the garment to document the before measurements which will be compared later. After the development sample has completed the dyeing process, she will review the final color – color matching. Then Edy will take the new garment measurements. She found that the fabric shrunk up, as was expected by our knowledgeable Project Manager. So what to do with that info? Edybel and the pattern maker will adjust the pattern. She will make it larger where it would shrink up, and smaller if it had expanded.

AVOIDING Shrinkage

Depending on your choice of materials, you may want to consider having your fabrics pre-washed before cutting. This step can prevent your garment from shrinking during clothing production or once the garment is washed by the customer. Additionally, it can help remove any impurities to prepare for the next steps. Care labels are also important for any items that require dry-cleaning or other special care. Overall, we are here to help test your products to make sure your customers are receiving garments that surpass their expectations.


Read more!

“Behind The Scenes: What Happens During Clothing Production

“A Zero-Waste Fiber Is Brewing”

Watch more!

Why Test Fabric for Shrinkage?”

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