What is "Burn out" - Definition & Explanation
Last Updated on: 25-Mar-2023 (1 year, 22 days ago)
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Burn out
In the textile industry, "burn-out" refers to a fabric design technique that creates a pattern by selectively dissolving or burning away certain fibers from a fabric blend. This process involves combining two different types of fibers, typically a natural fiber like cotton or rayon and a synthetic fiber like polyester. The synthetic fibers are designed to be resistant to the chemical agent used in the burn-out process, while the natural fibers are weakened or dissolved, resulting in a pattern or design.

The burn-out technique is accomplished by applying a chemical paste or gel to the fabric, which is then subjected to heat or steam. The chemical paste selectively breaks down the natural fibers, leaving behind the synthetic fibers and creating a semi-transparent pattern or design on the fabric. The areas where the natural fibers have been dissolved or weakened appear lighter or sheer compared to the unaffected synthetic fiber areas.

This technique allows for the creation of intricate and delicate designs with a sense of depth and texture. Common burn-out patterns include floral motifs, geometric shapes, and intricate lace-like designs. The level of transparency in the burn-out areas can vary, depending on the desired effect and the concentration of the chemical paste used during the process.

Burn-out fabrics are widely used in various applications, including apparel, home textiles, and upholstery. The technique adds visual interest to garments, giving them a unique and artistic look. In fashion, burn-out fabrics are often used for dresses, blouses, scarves, and other garments where a touch of elegance and allure is desired. In home textiles, burn-out fabrics find application in curtains, drapes, decorative pillows, and table linens, creating a sophisticated and stylish ambiance.

Several textile manufacturers and brands specialize in producing burn-out fabrics. One of the prominent manufacturers is Stylus Apparel, which offers a wide range of burn-out fabrics in various patterns and color options. The company caters to both small-scale and large-scale production, providing custom burn-out fabrics to fashion designers, retailers, and brands.

Another leading manufacturer is Robert Kaufman Fabrics, known for its extensive collection of burn-out fabrics. The company offers an array of designs and colors, ensuring a diverse range of options for designers and manufacturers. Their burn-out fabrics are popular in both apparel and home decor markets.

Fashion brands such as Diane von Furstenberg, Anna Sui, and Elie Tahari have incorporated burn-out fabrics into their collections, often using them as a signature element in their designs. These brands showcase the versatility of burn-out fabrics by creating garments that are both stylish and distinctive.

In recent years, there has been a growing trend toward sustainable and eco-friendly textiles. Some manufacturers have responded to this demand by developing burn-out fabrics using environmentally friendly processes and materials. For instance, eco-friendly fibers like organic cotton or bamboo are being used in combination with synthetic fibers for burn-out designs, reducing the environmental impact of the manufacturing process.

In conclusion, burn-out is a fabric design technique that selectively dissolves or weakens natural fibers to create patterns or designs on fabrics. It adds visual interest, depth, and texture to textiles, making them ideal for fashion and home decor applications. Several manufacturers and fashion brands specialize in producing burn-out fabrics, offering a wide range of options for designers and consumers. With the growing emphasis on sustainability, there is also a movement towards eco-friendly burn-out fabrics, incorporating organic or sustainable fibers into the process.
A brocade-like pattern effect created on the fabric through the application of a chemical, instead of color, during the burn-out printing process. (Sulfuric acid, mixed into a colorless print paste, is the most common chemical used.) Many simulated eyelet effects can be created using this method. In these instances, the chemical destroys the fiber and creates a hole in the fabric in a specific design, where the chemical comes in contact with the fabric. The fabric is then over-printed with a simulated embroidery stitch to create the eyelet effect. However, burn-out effects can also be created on velvets made of blended fibers, in which the ground fabric is of one fiber like a polyester, and the pile may be of a cellulosic fiber like rayon or acetate. In this case, when the chemical is printed in a certain pattern, it destroys the pile in those areas where the chemical comes in contact with the fabric, but leave the ground fabric unharmed.
Burn out
A fabric made of 2 fibers then printed with a chemical that dissolves one of the fibers thus creating a design. Often done on velvet.

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