It’s amazing all the various crap you can put a digital image onto now. And for fairly cheap. It used to be limited to posters, cards, keychains, and mugs at your Office Depot. Now, pretty much anything with a surface can be etched or covered with a digital image, and you don’t need to pay for a run of 5000 units to get a custom one made.
Spoonflower is yet another company in a growing market that specializes in using digital photographs to create customized fabric prints. This isn’t an endorsement, just a review of my own thoughts about the trend and their fabric, so it’s just info for ya. Yep, I paid for the stuff myself. Boo.
I’m really interested in this type of service, since fabric inlays are done all the time on custom surfboards. In fact, I have some Elvis fabric (purchased at Graceland- the Holy Zone- many years ago) glassed into a 6’8″ Neilson. Wouldn’t it be cool to pretend I’m a real photographer and have MY wicked awesome pic glassed into my next surfboard?? Neato. In fact, Swaylocks.com had some discussion on this topic a while back about printing on custom fabric for use in surfboard designs and art.
I wanted to try this digital fabric printing company out for myself. When I noticed they had not only a variety of cottons, but Lycra available to be printed on, that’s when I knew what I wanted my next surfy project to be.
I used this photo of some beautiful orchids from the Florida Keys my friends got me as a gift a while back. I wanted the Lycra to have a black background, so I did a dark vignette filter on the pic.
The design upload and selection was pretty easy, and I sized the pic to be tiled onto 1 yard of fabric. One yard with shipping came out to around $35, so it wasn’t THAT cheap. But, relatively speaking, it’s not so outrageous compared with the cost of printed Lycra swimwear these days. I just hoped I wouldn’t mess up sewing, or this would get VERY expensive.
The fabric arrived in just a few days. I was happy with the heavy weight of the Sport Lycra. I did wash it twice in the laundry- on its’ own- to ensure no problem with color bleeding. I didn’t notice any fade after these initial washes.
In my next post, check out what I made with my yard and if it held up to my style of surfing!