Thermochromic Ink Research

Here is a link to find more information about the ink that I used and other related products for textiles and other materials:

http://www.hallcrest.com/tic.cfm

http://www.colorchange.com/thermochromic

The ink that I bough  is black and reacts at 24 C. You can get other colors and temperatures depending on the use. This one is specifically for screen printing on textiles, but you can find other similar inks for paper, cardboard or other materials.

 

Process:

I was very interested in exploring Thermochromic ink and its applications into pattern design for textiles. So I first designed two simple geometric patterns on Illustrator. Each pattern had 2 layers, one for  normal ink (in this case I used red and black) and the other layer for thermochromic ink.

I made 4 different screens and applied the ink combining it with the normal one to create different effects. I was pleased with the results, because you can create really strong effects by applying the ink in different places on the garment.

The photos show experimentation only with 100% cotton, which works very well; it has a plain weave, that’s flat, durable and creates a good surface for printing; it is also light weight, which allows fast heat absorption. Other types of fabric such as silk blends with heavy weight take longer to react and the ink doesn’t blend very well onto the fabric. I find the light and plain weaves give better results. It is also important to take into account the amount of thermochromic ink applied onto each design, because it tends to stiffen the fabric a lot, and if you care about the flow and drape of the fabric, it is better to apply smaller amounts.

 

 

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