Your Guide To Fabric Printing
Our Fabric Swatch Pack is here to help you make an informed choice to what fabric will work best for each particular project. This fabric swatch pack features a fun and vibrant print on each of the fabric samples, to show you how a print will come out against the different surfaces and weaves of each fabric. Use this swatch pack to help visualise how our fabrics will work in your home or for your individual project. We also offer customisable test print samples of our fabrics, so you can see colour tests of your design before you make your full order.
When you get your pack in your hands, you can look up each material in our full fabric range list to see the properties, uses and fabric information too. Just enter the name or the ref number from the swatch.
Into fabrics, sewing and blogging?
You are a blogger and want to try our swatch pack for free? Then get in touch. Send us an email with a link to your blog and tell us more about yourself, what you write about and what you are working on. Try the vast range of our fabrics and find inspiration for your next project. Whether you are into DIY, making your own clothes, bags or accessories, you will definitely find a suitable fabric for your new creative undertaking.
Please note: you cannot customise your Fabric Swatch Pack. Each fabric sample is ready printed with a full colour, detailed design.
Reviews of Fabric Swatch Pack
Frequently asked questions:
Are all the fabrics inside the swatch pack?We have a wide range of fabrics to print on and the packs show the whole range. All 80 examples are included, apart from a few specialist fabrics, such as the 3mm felt, printable leather and our needlepoint tapestry. These are hard to accommodate due to their format mass, but you can order tests prints directly of each.
Is it clear which is the heavier of the fabrics?We think that by having the samples and simply handling them personally will tell you so much about our range of custom fabrics, including the weight, and texture. If you can't decide by handling the fabric, then you can check out the specific fabric product page on the website for further details, or make a custom test print.
Is the print example a good representation?We think that the print example is a very good representation. We use a design that has solid full colour and fine detail. The samples give a full representation of what the print quality is like on each textile. The surface textures very useful when deciding which to pick. You can try a test print as the next step in your selection.
Delivery time & costs
At Contrado, we personally commit to our customer satisfaction with a wide product selection hand-made in our premises, a great quality, dedicated service as well as fast delivery.
Make use of our manufacturing and worldwide shipping experienceFor the past 14 years, we have printed and hand-made countless personalised products for a wide range of customers all over the world and many of them have become loyal customers who love not only our products but also the care, knowledge and dedication from our staff.
Here is how it works. First, we hand-make your item on average within 1-3 days - depending on the product manufacturing timeline and quantities. You can find more information about manufacturing time on each product's specific page. Once your order is produced, we ship it, using your chosen delivery service, so you can receive it very quickly. Delivery time is subject to the delivery type you select in your basket. Here is a brief overview of our delivery options and times:
- Royal Mail 1st Class Recorded (no tracking) - 1-5 working days on average (please note that this can take up to 15 working days in very exceptional circumstances)
- Royal Mail 1st Class recorded (no tracking) - Usually next day. Not guaranteed next day, or tracked. Signature Required.
- Special Delivery - next day delivery
- Saturday Delivery (deliver only on Sat)
- Collection from our London Office
For further information on our production and shipping times, please click here.
You have the amazing designs, but do you have the amazing place to sell?
All you have to do is design what you love and we bring your creations to life. We take care of the hand crafting and manufacture, the sales and the shipping. You the designer, control the products and designs from wherever you are, from home, the office, even on the go. Meanwhile the orders start to roll in and you get commissions fast.
What's the best resolution to print in?
We print at 200dpi, which is a good combination of quality and file weight. Ideally your image should be scaled to 100% at 200dpi; this means that no resizing of your file occurs, preventing any interpolation.
Should I save my file as a TIFF or JPEG?
For multi-coloured or very detailed files we recommend using a tiff format, but they must be flattened. For simple colours and low detail files, a jpeg is fine.
Which colour model should I choose? RGB or CMYK?
If each individual colour is specifically important to your design, choose CYMK as our setup will print each colour with the closest possible match within our available range. If the relationship between the colours within the image is more important choose RGB; this will reduce all colours equally to fit within our range.
There is no limit on the length of the fabric that you can order. We have a preview design window set up to 5m max to visualise the print, but that's not a print limit. If you'd like to order more, you can increase the quantity (x2 for 10m or x 4 for 20m for e.g.) and then your orders can be as long as you'd like, with a built in automatic volume discount too. The maximum print width of each fabric can be found on the individual fabric pages or in our design interface.
Do I need to incorporate white space within my design if I want a border or some cutting space?
Yes, that might help you! Always incorporate any extra space or boarders into your purchased fabric size. We trim squarely around fabric samples and fabric prints, leaving approximately 5mm white space. Cutting neatly on the line has an additional fee.
Do you print on fabric a customer supplies?
Unfortunately not; we like to test meticulously so that we know what gets best results on our fabrics, and our facilities cater perfectly to them. We do however print sublimation paper to order, and if you have access to a heat press you can press your own fabrics easily.
What is the situation with material shrinkage?
Just like many fabric printing processes, there is the potential for shrinkage. Depending on the fabric, please expect and allow between 2-6% shrinkage which you need to plan for in your dimensions.
Can I print on both sides of the fabric?
We do not offer printing on both sides of the fabric, as a lot of our fabrics are semi-transparent. As the customer, you can consider the effect of printing on both sides one of our fabrics and contact us, and we will get back to you if it's feasible.
Can I order labels in another fabric? Will you cut them like you do with the normal fabric labels?
At the moment no, our labels are all printed on the same satin fabric. We may introduce more in the future, but for now this is the best choice. The labels are all cut the same way. You can order the fabric of your choice and make the labels yourself, but we do not cut different fabric into label format.
How is your fabric printing eco-friendly?
With environmental consciousness in mind, our fabrics are all printed using completely water-based inks. This means no chemicals or solvents are used. Our heat fixing procedure fixes the colours and prints, avoiding the downsides of steaming, such as excess or contaminated water returning into the waste system. We have one facility in London where we conduct all the printing, production and fulfillment.
Sizing For Hemming And Shrinkage
We have a full Cut & Sew service here at Contrado, and are able to hem your fabric prints for a small additional charge. We create a small one- or two-fold hem that typically uses 5 to 20mm of material, depending on the thickness of the fabric. So, for example, if you want a finished piece of fabric that measures 100 x 100cm, you will need to order a size of 101.5cm x 101.5cm to allow for the hem (on top of that please also allow for shrinkage of min 2%). The thicker the fabric, the bigger the hem will be. You can choose to have your prints hemmed with either Black or White thread. On our silk and other light woven fabrics, one hemmed edge will be straight (vertically down the roll) and the other will be slightly rippled. The hemming material allowances are as follows and you need to make your print bigger to accommodate the hem:
- Light Fabrics (20-100gsm): For silks and other light fabrics, we use 6-8mm in the hem (2 fold), so overall width/height will be minus 12-16mm
- Medium Fabrics (101-200gsm): For medium-weight fabrics that fray, we use 15-20mm in the hem (2 fold) so overall width/height will be minus 35-40mm
- Stiff/Heavy/No-fray fabrics: we use 15-20mm in the hem (1 fold) so overall width/height will be minus 35-40mm
All of these measurements are approximate and can vary. Including with shrinkage it can mean a fairly significant difference to ordered dimensions, so please plan your print accordingly. Depending on how open the weave is, our fabric can shrink anywhere from 2% to 8% with the average being 2.5%.