Different Styles of Printing in Textiles

Last Updated on 26/06/2022

Styles of Printing:
Style refers to the manner in which a particular action is performed; thus style of printing means the manner in which a printed effect is produced as distinct from the method which involves the means by which the pattern is produced. Styles of printing involve certain mechanical operation and chemical reactions.

styles of printing

List of Printing Styles in Textile:

  1. Direct style of printing
  2. Overprinting style
  3. Mordant printing
  4. Flock style of printing
  5. Discharge style of printing
  6. Dyed style of printing
  7. Transfer printing style
  8. Resist style of printing
  9. Resist dyeing
  10. Azoic style of printing
  11. Metal style of printing
  12. Crimp style of printing
  13. Pigment printing

You may also like: Different Types of Printing Methods on Fabric

Textile manufacturers might think: When you want to promote textile patterns, do not always bring those samples in a fixed place to display, because someone may see it briefly and forget it immediately. Considering this, you can choose customized stickers in large quantities, with your own logo and various textile pictures on the customized stickers, and directly distribute them as gifts in each on-site publicity display, so as to deepen the impression of potential customers on the products and improve the purchase rate.

customized stickers

Different styles of printing on fabric are described below:

1. Direct Style of Printing:
In direct printing, a color pattern is printed directly from a dye or pigment paste onto a textile substrate without any prior mordanting step or a follow-up step of dyeing, etc. In this style of printing in one or several colors where the dyes are applied and then fixed by ageing or other appropriate means. The fabric is usually initially white but may sometimes have previously dyed.

2. Overprinting:
In the direct printing, a common approach is to apply a color pattern onto a grey or bleached fabric. If done on colored fabric, it is known as overprinting. The desired pattern is produced by pressing dye on the fabric in a paste form. To prepare the print paste, a thickening agent is added to a limited amount of water and dye is dissolved in it. Earlier starch was preferred as a thickening agent for printing. Nowadays, gums or alginates derived from seaweed are preferred as they allow better penetration of color and are easier to wash out.

3. Mordant Printing:
The mordant printing incorporates printing of a mordant in the desired pattern prior to dyeing cloth. The color adheres only where the mordant is printed.

4. Flock Style of Printing:
A method of fabric ornamentation in which adhesive is printed on and then finely chopped fibers are applied all over by means of dusting-on, an air-blast, or electrostatic attraction. The fibers adhere only to the printed areas and are removed from the unprinted areas by mechanical action.

5. Discharge Style of Printing:
This process is used to remove color from a dyed fabric in a desired pattern. A paste containing a chemical with a bleaching effect is applied through a printing process. The fabric is then placed in a steam unit for a specified time. The steam has the effect of removing the color from the fabric, leaving a lighter pattern in the printed areas. If desired, a non-dischargeable dye can be incorporated into the printing process to achieve a multicolored design.

Simply we can explain, in discharge printing, a textile fabric is first dyed with a suitable dye and then the dye is selectively destroyed from certain areas of the fabric to give the look of a printed pattern.

6. Dyed Style of Printing:
This style consists of two steps: printing with a mordant and dyeing. After dyeing color only fixes in places where mordant was applied as a result a design is produced on the fabric.

7. Transfer Printing:
In transfer printing, a design is printed first on a flexible non-textile substrate (e. g. paper) and later transferred from the paper to a textile substrate.

8. Resist / Reverse Style of Printing:
In this case fabric is first printed with a white or colored resist agent and then dyed. A design is thus produced, as the dyestuff does not get fixed in places where the resist agent was applied.

9. Resist Dyeing:
In resist dyeing, a wax or other substance is printed onto fabric which is subsequently dyed. The waxed areas do not accept the dye, leaving uncolored patterns on a colored ground.

10. Azoic Style of Printing:
Fabric is printed with coupling compound of azoic dye and then padded with a diazo compound. Color show up in printed areas as only there the reaction between two compounds occur.

11. Metal Style of Printing:
In the metal style of printing fabric is printed with silver or gold solution or non-removable resins.

12. Crimp / Crepon Style of Printing:
Fabric is printed with thickened sodium hydroxide solution and then immersed in water. Thus only the printed areas shrink and an effect is produced.

13. Pigment Printing:
Printing is done by the use of pigments instead of dyes. The pigments do not penetrate the fiber but are affixed to the surface of the fabric by means of synthetic resins which are cured after application to make them insoluble. The pigments are insoluble, and application is in the form of water-in-oil or oil-in-water emulsions of pigment pastes and resins. The colors produced are bright and generally fat except for crocking. Most pigment printing is done without thickeners because the mixing up of resins, solvents and water produces thickening anyway.


  1. Handbook of Value Addition Processes for Fabrics By B. Purushothama
  2. An Introduction to Textile Coloration: Principles and Practice By Roger H. Wardman
  3. Textile Engineering – An Introduction Edited by Yasir Nawab
  4. Textile Chemistry By Thomas Bechtold and Tung Pham
  5. Textile Printing (Revised Second Edition) Edited by Leslie W C Miles

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