August '17

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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2 0 1 7 A U G U S T P R I N T W E A R || 29 While all of this may sound like a reason to avoid chenille, it's really a compelling reason to pursue it. Because chenille is not very predominant, it has a lot of real growth possibilities. The current demand for unique products and applications within the imprinted sportswear industry is growing in leaps and bounds, making chenille receive a lot more attention. Another characteristic that makes chenille different from tradi- tional embroidery is that most of the work is not completed directly on the garment. Instead, the design is applied to a fabric background called scrim felt, which is then cut out and sewn to the garment like a patch. Typically, the scrim felt is mounted in a large frame so that multiple designs can be sewn in one hooping. This maximizes the production process while minimizing waste of the material. Upon completion of sewing, the operator removes the scrim felt from the frame and begins the most critical aspect of the process. Using spe- cial scissors, the operator trims away excess scrim from around each design in parallel with the outer edges, while leaving a small portion of fabric to allow a stitching surface for sewing it onto a garment. Essentially, they are a patch with the chenille design being the cen- terpiece. And since chenille is almost never done directly on the gar- ment, the final step is to attach the patch to the garment. This can be done by hand or by using a regular sewing machine. Another option is to treat the chenille patch like an appliqué and apply it to the gar- ment using a standard embroidery machine. In addition to the advantage of uniqueness, chenille also lends itself to more cost effective, high-stitch count designs. Overall, the sewing speed for chenille is much slower at an average of 500–700spm, but the sheer bulk of the yarn makes it easier to cover a large area with

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