Burning Out Print Techniques

Last Updated on 25/08/2021

Burning Out Print Techniques

Mohammad Nurul Alam
SeniorMerchandiser | Asmara BD Pvt. Ltd. | Dhaka | Bangladesh
E-mail: alamnur09@yahoo.com / alam@bd.asmaragroup.com


I was trying to read in details about burn out print. But it was not easy understanding and much informative that available on internet. Most important fact is all the information is quite similar and some are done by copy paste. So if reader wants to know this print technique in practical point of view then gets lots of difficulties. I tried to dig into the matter and started learning on internet. I discussed with many of print expert and got some valuable information that can be easy workable for a merchandiser when goes to work on it.

What is burning out print?
Burn-out or burning out print, also named ausbrenner or dévorée. In subject line this is call print but practically this is not any kind of print. The characteristic of print is layering on any fabric. But the Burn out print does not put any layer rather it burns layer from fabric. This is actually old method of designing on fabric but in new and modern form. This technique developed in the 20th century at French. The technique was popularized in the 1920s – typically used on evening gowns and shawls – and revived in the 1980s and ’90s.

burning out print
Fig: Burn-out printed t-shirt (Burnout eats the cotton away on a 50/50 shirt leaving only the polyester)

I told earlier this is an old method of fabric designing by mixing fiber and destroying other. We get mélange look on fabric when one part dye done on CVC. In the same way burn out done on CVC or PC fabric and give design on fabric by destroying cotton portion. At the burn out areas there will be 100% polyester remaining the other portion will be same as before burn out.

About 80% of the burnout t-shirt done for females.

Advantage and disadvantages burn out printing:
Any fancy work on garments and fabric has higher wastage and process loss. Some time it may destroy total volume and bring big loss for the manufacturer. But as people of modern time want more and more exception and fancy so all the brand now look for special treatment. Burn out also similar types of fancy treatment that attract the customer more. Particularly for women’s wear this is much lucrative. Burn out makes the fabric very soft and gives a super fabric hand feel. This fabric really comfortable for the wearer.

Disadvantages are higher process loss, costly as well as not available print factory. All the All Over Print (AOP) factory is not ready to do less than a certain volume. Want higher cost.

Burn out has low productivity during sewing because of its uneven surface. Operator need to take special care when sewing the garment and so productivity much slower.

Shrinkage is another big problem for burn out fabric, so must be careful and take precaution actuation to control the shrinkage level. Before bulk a small lot can be good for trial to determine shrinkage.

What type of fabric require?
Burn out possible on blended fiber only. Mostly used fabric is

  1. 60% polyester 40% cotton
  2. 40% polyester 60% cotton

It can be combined to,

  1. Protine based fiber (silk )+ Cellulose fiber (viscose, cotton, or rayon) burn out chemical Sodium hydroxide solution
  2. Polyester + Other fiber (But not polyamide.) burn out chemical Sodium dihydrogen phosphate
  3. Polyamide(Nylon) + Other fiber (But not Polyester) . burn out chemical Aluminium sulphate

If needed the finished fabric with 120 to 130 GSM then should take knit the fabric with 160 to 170 GSM. Generally lighter fabric is good for burn out process. Single jersey is suitable for this technique.

The process loss is very high 35% to 40% so care full consumption needed before fabric booking. Usually process loss is depends on burn out design area. Less design coverage is less process loss and big design require more process loss.

You may also like: Step by Step Burn Out Printing Process for Beginners

Earlier burn out technique was applied on dyed fabric then it is washed only to remove destroyed fiber from fabric. But it has many problem particularly shade change after burn out. The shade before burn out and after burn out not matched. That’s why now this is done on RFD fabric. Then fabric is dyed in desired color.

How is burning out print done?
Burn out usually done on flat bed rotary machine. Print screen required to develop and then chemical applied on RFD fabric same as rotary print. The difference is after applied print color on fabric then design is visible for normal AOP (all over print) but for burn out technique the design is not visible much. Only after curing process it can be visible in light brown color.

There is more important fact that an operator does during curing process. The adjustment of temperature is very important. If temperature gets high during curing process then possibility to damaging the fabric. In the same way if less heat is given then burn out may not be good. Operator fixed the temperature 160 C to 200 C depending on fabric and print type.

General Recipe:

  • Thickening Agent
  • Sodium Hydroxide/sodium hydrogen sulphate.
  • Glycerin.
  • Water.

In the above we mentioned what chemical require for what type of fabric to get burn out effect. Here Glycerin used to smooth the print and to pass through print screen. This is not all time require but operator use if thinks needed.

Is placement burn out possible?
We do placement print on chest of tee shirt or other garments. This is quite common to us but one of my customer ask for placement burn out. They want same effect as the tee shirt print. Actually this is quite unusual for us. 1st of all it needs to print on RFD cutting. Then to sew garment and garment dye or on dyed fabric placement bur out and then garments making and wash. In both process this is not production friendly. I never do it but possible.

Cost of burning out print:
Normally the cost of burnout print is $4.5 to $5.0/kg. If fabric quantity is big then the cost will be less. Also the print cost vary from factory to factory. Good AOP mill does not compromise in quality and so price is higher. I talked to a low standard AOP factory for burn out print they even say can do at 3.80/kgs but I doubt about quality.

Care Instruction:

care instruction
Fig: Care instruction

Wash thoroughly with warm 44oC water

We mostly not aware when goes for making special fabric such as burn out. If special care is not taken then a merchandiser a may face many difficulties. The most important initiative is to take advise from the people who works on this kind of fabric just to determine that merchandiser is doing correct.

You may also like:

  1. Application of 3D Printing in Textile and Apparel Industry
  2. All Over Printing Techniques
  3. Digital Textile Printing Technology: Evolution, Progression and Techniques
  4. Types of Fashion Prints on Fabric
  5. Different Types of T-shirts with Lots of Graphics
  6. Leather Printing Techniques Step by Step

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