What is waterproof fabric?
Waterproof fabric is a generalised term for any materials which are resistant, either fully or partially, to penetration by water. There is a difference between “waterproof” and “water-resistant.” Fabrics and materials that are described as waterproof are fully resistant to the penetration of water, whereas water-resistant fabrics can only withstand water for a limited time. When water hits these fabrics, it will typically bead up and run right off.
Waterproof fabric is usually a textile that is compounded with polymer waterproof, breathable materials. It can be produced in several different ways. There are some fabrics and materials that are naturally waterproof, such as rubber and plastic. Others have protective waterproof coatings, such as oilcloth, while some are laminated with thin waterproof films. Wax is a natural material that can be used to waterproof a fabric. Water-repellent fabrics can also be woven materials that have been manufactured to partially repel water. The weave is so tight that water can't penetrate the fabric. In fact, when the material gets wet, the fibres swell and make the weave even tighter. Despite these qualities, custom waterproof fabrics are still breathable and comfortable to wear.
Printing on waterproof material happens right here at our production house in the UK. Our experienced technicians primarily use sublimation printing to get your design onto the fabric. This process involves using eco-friendly inks and a special paper combined with a heat press to print the fabric. The resulting print is highly durable and retains all the qualities of the fabric itself, as the inks are embedded directly into the fibres. Your design will be just as enduring as the fabric, so you don't have to worry about it peeling off or fading through the years. Rain or shine, your design will look like a masterpiece.
Purposes of waterproof fabric
The purposes of waterproof fabric are wide and quite extent. Waterproofing is required to keep us dry and comfortable while allowing skin to breathe. Thanks to its multitude of useful characteristics, some of the most sought after uses of waterproof material fabric include:
- Outdoor Wear
- Ski Wear
- Shower curtains
You can use printing on waterproof fabric for any project that you see fit. For the avid maker, it's a great material to have in your arsenal. These materials open a door of possibilities for creating garments and furnishing that can quite literally weather any storm. As for your designs, you can use your own art to design a fabric that you know you'll get plenty of use out of.
Properties and Advantages
Waterproof fabrics have many desirable qualities which make them appealing and necessary for a wide range of uses. They also have excellent heat-holding properties and hold up well in cold temperatures, which is what makes them great for outdoor wear and camping equipment.
Modern waterproof textiles can still be breathable as well. They let perspiration out while preventing water penetration. It's a two-way system that will keep you comfortable out in the elements.
Custom waterproof fabric also resists harmful bacteria such as mildew and mold. This is a must-have quality for shower curtains, as bathrooms are typically a more humid environment.
As a bonus, waterproof material is easy to care for. This type of fabric is generally not fussy or prone to wrinkling. They are quite durable and designed for heavy use.