Friday, June 10, 2011

At the studio- Heat Transferable Dyes

Heat transfer printing is a fast, immediate and creative way of producing one-off textiles and one we use at the studio for sampling.

Step 1.
Heat responsive pigment powder is mixed with water and then used like an ink to paint.  The dyes adhere to synthetic fabrics only, which makes for cheap sampling! There are some great synthetics out there which work as close copies to natural fabrics.

When the art work is dry it's ready to be pressed! The Heat Press we use is 16 x 24 inches. The Press temperature is set to 400 degrees, the fabric is laid onto the machine 'bed' and the paperwork put face down on top. The machine is then clamped down for about a minute or so.

A Print fresh out of the oven! The fabric is then ready to be fashioned.


  1. Thanks for sharing your process!

  2. Woah! I’m really loving the stuff of this blog. It’s simple, yet effective. A lot of times it’s challenging to get that “perfect balance” between user friendliness and visual appearance. I must say you have done a amazing job with this. Excellent Blog!

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    1. Amelia, what a nice comment to get first thing this morning. It's great to hear the blog is striking a good balance, honestly that's the biggest compliment you could give, as it's hard to gain perspective from this, the other end!
      I hope you continue to enjoy it! Have a fab day!

  3. that's amazing! Thanks for sharing this. I've always wondered what a quick version of sampling could be. Can you do multiple heat transfers from one artwork? (one after another), or is it a one off? Also, are you willing to say what brand of pigments you use?
    All your work is so inspiring!!

    1. You can get another print but a much faded version, which can be interesting:)

  4. I was wondering the same thing as the person above me ^
    Can you use the same print to make multiple samples?

    Also, thank you so much for sharing this! I love finding new ways to print my art & I have been searching for some what of an easier tutorial like this to print scarves.

    1. Hi Marissa,

      Sure thing ! See above, sadly thats the only downfall, that and the limitation due to the size of the press itself.

  5. Hi there!
    Your prints are beautiful! Would you be able to give some insight as to where you can find heat transferable inks such as what you use above? I'm based in New Zealand and the industry is somewhat limited here for DIY/home use of the pigment powders so am finding it hard to come across them.
    Any help would be awesome!