New technology is taking customization in exciting new directions.
Digital printing is the next big thing in the fashion industry as designers and brands look for greater product differentiation and for smaller minimums.
Initially starting out in the T-shirt industry where retailers offered consumers the opportunity to print whatever they wanted on a shirt, the technology is now taking the fashion industry by storm.
From small studios to larger manufacturers, there’s a growing adoption of digital printing technology.
One of the lead players in the digital printing revolution is Kornit. The Israeli company has been a pioneer in digital printing technology for over 10 years. The company’s innovations included advancements in both the printing equipment and the consumables.
Brands and retailers love the vast design capabilities of digital printing, as well as the fact that print runs can theoretically be as small as a single garment. However, digital printing is still a relatively niche market due to the cost of the consumables, mainly the ink.
“The faster that digital printing is accepted into the industry, the more quickly we’ll see ink prices come down,” said Eyal Manzoor, managing director of Kornit Europe.
Still, the quality and uniqueness of prints that can be created using digital printing remains a big draw in an industry scrambling to find products that have that elusive consumer appeal.
With digital printing, if you can design it you can print it. From photos to fine art, the printing technology has few creative limitations. The boundaries are expanding even further with the launch of Kornit’s newest machine.
“The Kornit Avalanche Hexa offers seven colors. Previous machines had the standard CMYK (cyan, magenta, yellow and black). This new model adds green and red inks for greater color gamut, as well as enhanced color spaces and more nuanced shading,” explained Mr. Manzoor.
One of most exciting new applications is the ability to use digital printing on denim.
In Touch with the Industry
Understanding what’s happening in the apparel industry is vital to discovering opportunities for growth and development. One way Kornit does this is by reading Inside Fashion.
“Inside Fashion provides us with accurate market information. They’re actively meeting with the key companies in the garment and textile industry and this is reported in the publication. We get a lot of valuable insights from this,” said Mr. Manzoor.
Surface and Substance
While the design capabilities get most of the attention, technical support is critical. Digital printing machines are more complicated than screen-printing. Kornit can respond to service calls as quickly as in the same day. They also provide online support.
“We recognize that our customers face very tight lead times, so we’re continuing to find ways to help them keep their machines running smoothly with little to no down time,” said Mr. Manzoor.