by Cassandra Balentine
Digital dye-sublimation (dye-sub) printing enables custom, commercial work for industries like fashion and hospitality. The latest digital direct to fabric printing technologies bring this down to an individual level of customization. An added bonus, these devices offer the ability to print to natural fibers, which is a growing trend in nearly all industries.
Dye Into Print, established in 1998, is a full-service, dye-sub heat transfer and direct to fabric print provider offering production, cutting, sewing, and fulfillment services to the visual merchandising display and specialty events industry. The textile printer’s two print facilities are based out of Clifton, NJ.
A second generation, family-owned company, it is currently operated by Sam and Jake Smith. The brothers joined the business about nine years ago and haven’t looked back.
Dye Into Print ships to customers nationally to small individual users and large, multi-international corporations. Its core client base operates in the metro New York City area.
The manufacturer targets both business to business (B2B) and business to consumer (B2C) clientele. In the B2B space this is primarily visual merchandising display, special event, hospitality, and creative marketing businesses. It operates a fleet of dye-sub transfer devices that handle a range of products in up to ten-foot wide seamless prints.
For B2C it completes a lot of home décor products through drop ship fulfillment as well as print on demand products for large retailers. Its range of offerings include banners, back drops, barricade covers, table throws, silicone edge graphic framed banners, pillows, blankets, table linens, napkins, and cushions.
Digital printing has been at the forefront of Dye Into Print’s business for more than 20 years. For the past 15 to 20 years it focused on transfer dye-sub processes. At the start, Sam and Jake’s father, Mitchell, worked closely with party planners to mainly create custom tablecloths. Dye-sub and supported fabrics suit this niche well, but the opportunity is expanding.
“Servicing the party and events industry in New York City, we constantly got requests for unique patterns, designs, and prints,” share the Smiths. “We saw a need to give our hospitality clientele more customizable options for their special events.”
As print technologies advance, the textile print provider is also evolving, adding new markets to its radar. “The home décor market is a driving force in requesting cotton and natural fiber products. We listened to customers and decided to partner with a like-minded company focused on near-shoring, printing on demand, and environmentally friendly,” say the Smiths.
All of these factors helped determine Dye Into Print’s investment in Kornit Digital technologies. “It was the right partner for us to get more immersed in the direct to fabric space, as we were impressed with the quality of the machines as well as the sustainable initiatives,” they state.
Specifically, the custom textile manufacturer relies on the Kornit Presto S Max for direct to fabric work. Targeting the needs of top fashion and home décor brands, the direct to fabric press enables three-dimensional effects with Kornit XDi tech, neon colors, and white prints on colored fabrics.
In terms of ink sets available, the press uses pigment water soluble. It also features new NeoPigment Robusto Softener, a dry digital softening process that adds an extra touch of sustainable fashion on demand.
The Kornit Presto S Max is mainly utilized to print directly onto cotton and other natural fabrics. The Smiths admit there is demand for pigment printing on polyester, which is also handled by the device.
Custom home décor is a growing space that Dye Into Print is well poised to service. “We’re at the perfect intersection of print on demand and ecommerce,” shares Sam Smith.
In addition to its primary website, the company owns and operates the URL tablecloth.com where it is able to attract ecommerce work. It also partners with popular platforms like Amazon to fulfill custom orders.
The Kornit Press S Max allows the business to be flexible and nimble, cashing in on every holiday cycle—from Valentine’s Day to Christmas. The team offers custom designs on its website, and touts a fast turnaround of same or next day for 99 percent of orders.
Beyond ecommerce, the custom textile provider finds its dye-sub and direct to fabric technologies to be extremely complementary to its traditional base, especially as new demands emerge.
For instance, it often acts as a behind-the-scenes manufacturer for brands hosting galas, dinner parties, award shows, and other high-end events. The industry is always changing and while these custom linens were typically produced using polyester materials, these same customers are exhibiting an interest in natural fibers. Therefore, the ability to offer options is crucial to Dye Into Print’s ongoing success.
The investment in direct to fabric technologies, specifically the Kornit Presto S Max, enables Dye Into Print to offer more to its existing customers as well as capitalize on new revenue streams, like custom home décor.
Apr2023, Industrial Print Magazine