ImagesMagUK_March_2024

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www.images-magazine.com 02 images MARCH2024 SHOPTALK 04 Editorial 10 Print Shop Pooches # 100 Meryl Streep from Printigo, plus a special guest appearance from the firstever Print Shop Pooch: Pooh from Monster Press 16 Decorated product of the month 18 Readers’ choice 80 Up close & personal Molly Harmon of Stahls’ UK NEWSHUB 06 Industry news Dae Ha UK introduces new DTF products and loyalty scheme, Jerzees to launch in Europe, and Sublistar launches DTF powder shaker KNOWLEDGE BASE 30 Fespa Global Print Expo 2024: Preview Michael Ryan reveals what the European trade show holds in store 32 Fespa Global Print Expo 2024: Exhibitor spotlight Get a sneak peek at some of the highlights at Fespa Global Print Expo later this month in Amsterdam 35 The Big Promotional Trade Show: Preview We prepare for the ‘Big’ trade shows, which are back for their seventh year and boasting even more exhibitors 36 Business Clinic The changes happening to UK company law this month, and the FSB talks VAT changes 38 Digital helpdesk Learn how to make DTFprinted faux embroidery look realistic with expert advice from Alice Belfield and Sean Barker of AJS 42 Anatomy of a print This month’s showstopping screen print comes from the talented team at Calder Screen Print in West Yorkshire 44 It’s the small things Tiny text is easy to achieve with some expert advice from Jamie Hood of embroidery digitiser David Sharp 57 Talking trends: Corporatewear More formal clothes along with sustainability and performance are key corporatewear trends this year, reports Clare Dwyer of Kustom Kit 64 The essential steps to training new staff Erich Campbell shines a light on what training is needed for new staff 72 A bag of tricks Bag personalisation doesn’t need to be complicated, says Chloe Greetham of Madeira. Follow her advice to carry off embroidery perfection 74AskTony This month, Tony answers: “What does upgrading from a manual to an auto actually involve?” 76 Chinks in your leadership armour It’s not easy being a leader. Marshall Atkinson helps you stay in control by identifying some key areas to focus on PRODUCT FOCUS 50 Putting workwear to work Whether they need comfort, style or function (or all three!), our guide to brandable corporate and workwear will see your customers through their working day 58 Classroom classics Want top marks from your junior customers? Then listen up and get ready to learn about this year’s gold-star schoolwear options 66Just sew From thread-colouring systems and embroidererfriendly tech to singleheads, we review the latest embroidery software, equipment and consumables INDUSTRY SPOTLIGHT 28 Red Sea shipping crisis: how suppliers are reacting Three industry suppliers tell Images how they are working to minimise the effects of rerouting container ships round Africa 45 Women in print and stitch To mark International Women’s Day on 8 March, we asked female decorators what’s the best thing about the industry, and what one change they’d like to make 48 Smart moves A solid business strategy and strong network have propelled Izzy Gray from printing her own T-shirt designs during lockdown to running four embroidery machines in just a few short years CONTENTS 40 42 66 38 10 48 72

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www.images-magazine.com 04 images MARCH2024 Published by: 360 Communications Ltd Images, 360 Communications Ltd, Citibase Brighton, 95 Ditchling Road, Brighton, BN1 4ST, UK 01273 748482 | www.images-magazine.com Advertising: advertising@images-magazine.com Editorial: editorial@images-magazine.com Productcion: production@images-magazine.com Subscriptions: subscriptions@images-magazine.com Publisher/advertising: Jonathan Vince | jonathan@images-magazine.com Features editor: Rachael Glazier | rachael@images-magazine.com Features writer: Mark Ludmon | mark@images-magazine.com Publishing assistant: Gaby Bowring | gaby@images-magazine.com Design/Production: ATG Media | production@atgraphicsuk.com Printing: Stephens & George Ltd| Goat Mill Road,Dowlais, Merthyr Tydfil, CF48 3TD(issn 0966 7512) Opinions expressed by contributors in this magazine are not necessarily shared by the Publisher. Editorial contributions are invited, on the understanding that the Publisher has the right to alter or abridge all such material as he sees fit. While the greatest care has been taken to ensure accuracy, the Publisher accepts no liability for either errors or omissions. EDITORIAL SIGNUP! Register now to receive your own FREE monthly copy of Images: imagesmag.uk/sign-up UPDATE CONTACT DETAILS Moved to new premises? WFH? Update your details online: imagesmag.uk/subs-update MARCH2024 VOL.33 NO.3 DIGITAL / SOCIAL 1Jan-31 Jan, 2024 Reach: 1,753 A century of canine capers March 8 is International Women’s Day and we are taking this opportunity to celebrate the many talented women who work in garment decoration businesses and make the industry what it is today. We asked 14 female printers and embroiderers what they like most about working in the industry and the one thing they would like to change. You can read what they had to say in ‘Women in print and stitch’ (page 45). It all began back in the mists of 2015 with Pooh from Monster Press – the Boss, the Don, the Godmother of Print Shop Pooches. And here we are more than eight years later with our one-hundredth pooch, the breathtakingly cute Meryl Streep from Printigo. In-between times, we have had the honour of featuring readers’ most valued members of staff at embroidery shops from Ely to Exeter, digital printers from Dunstable to Durham and screen printing outfits from Users: 471 Views: 22,587 digital edition MARCH 6, 2024 The Big Promotional Trade Show Glasgow, UK thebigpromotionaltradeshow.co.uk MARCH 19-22, 2024 Fespa Global Print Expo 2024 Amsterdam, The Netherlands fespaglobalprintexpo.com MARCH 20, 2024 The Big Promotional Trade Show Dublin, Republic of Ireland thebigpromotionaltradeshow.co.uk APRIL 16, 2024 Print & Stitch Glasgow/Strathclyde, UK printandstitch.org APRIL 18, 2024 Promotion & Branding Show Cheltenham, UK promobranding.events APRIL 18, 2024 The Big Promotional Trade Show London, UK thebigpromotionaltradeshow.co.uk APRIL 24, 2024 The Big Promotional Trade Show Manchester, UK thebigpromotionaltradeshow.co.uk MAY2, 2024 Promotion & Branding Show Farnborough, UK promobranding.events MAY 16, 2024 Promotion & Branding Show Manchester, UK promobranding.events May 21, 2024 Print & Stitch Newcastle, UK printandstitch.org INDUSTRY EVENTS Sowerby Bridge to Southampton (as well as from even further afield – yes, we’re talking about you Harley Beau, from BlackDog Ink in Port Macquarie, Australia, and Jaxx from Graphic Elephants in Colorado, USA, amongst others). You can read all about Meryl on page 10, and if you have a furry friend who is willing to be interviewed for the Print Shop Pooches feature, we would love to hear from you. Contact us via social media (@ImagesMagUK) or drop us an email (editorial@images-magazine.com) – the countdown to pooch #200 has begun! We are busy gathering our passports and travel documents and sorting out our travel bags in readiness for our annual visit to the Fespa Global Print Expo, (RAI Amsterdam, 19-22 March) – it promises to be a good one! Turn to page 30 for our show preview, and let us know if you are also visiting and fancy a coffee and a chat at the expo. Jonathan Vince Reach: 2,347 Web page views: 46, 427 Impressions: 3,104

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INDUSTRY NEWS www.images-magazine.com 06 images MARCH2024 Follow the links to the news stories online www.images-magazine.com Right: Customers can earn points when they buy products from Dae Ha UK thanks to the company’s new loyalty programme Loyalty pays for Dae Ha UK customers HTV and DTF consumables supplier Dae Ha UK has launched a loyalty scheme for all of its customers. For every £1 spent by a customer at the Dae Ha UK online store, they will receive a garment point. When a customer has collected 100 of these points, they can be converted into ‘e-wallet’ credits to be spent on future purchases through the Dae Ha UK website. “Simply go to the ‘my points’ page and click ‘convert points to e-wallet’,” explained the company. “To spend, place an online order as usual and the funds in your e-wallet will be automatically deducted from your order, unless you select for them not to be.” DaeHaUKoffers a wide range of Cad-Cut and printable HTV as well as DTF consumables and Lotus heat presses. imagesmag.uk/DHUK-loyalty The Jerzees brand will be available in the UK later this year Jerzees is coming to Europe FOL International has announced it is bringing the Jerzees brand to Europe later this year. The activewear brand, which will be available in the UK through Absolute Apparel and BTC Activewear, comprises T-shirts, sweatshirts and tracksuit bottoms. Jerzees is the third brand from FOL International, alongside Fruit of the Loom and Russell Europe. British customers will be able to get hold of the range in a wide range of modern colours and sizes from the middle of the year, the company said. “The brand stands for quality, innovation and the realisation of an active lifestyle – attributes which we want to get our European customers excited about,” said marketing manager Marthe Kazur. Founded in the US in 1984, and owned by FOL since 2006, Jerzees promises “high-quality, comfortable basics made of innovative fabrics for an active lifestyle” – and says it is committed to sustainability with the motto ‘Do What Matterz’. imagesmag.uk/Jerzees-Europe The new Sublistar Automatic Desktop Powder Shaker is available from Midwest Sublistar launches powder shaker Machine manufacturer Sublistar has introduced an L-shaped direct-tofilm (DTF) powder shaker. The Automatic Desktop Powder Shaker, which is available in the UK through the distributor Midwest, has an integrated curing oven, allowing film sheets to be coated with powder and cured in one unit. The film, up to an A3 size, is placed in the unit and, once the door is closed, the DTF powder shaking then begins. Once this process is complete, the sheet is automatically fed through into the integrated dryer where the powder is cured. The company says the new desktop unit has a “space-saving and lightweight design” and offers even curing. imagesmag.uk/Sublistar-powder

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INDUSTRY NEWS www.images-magazine.com 08 images MARCH 2024 Stefan Milaszewicz has joined Shirt Monkey as sales director. Previously at distributor PenCarrie for more than eight years, as well as at garment decorator T Print and distributor BTC Activewear, he joined the direct-to-garment print business in Cheshire last month. “The new role will involve growing the existing customer base of predominately print-on-demand to drive for more trade business,” explained Stefan. “Shirt Monkey can now produce up to 10,000 prints a day and so there is a strong opportunity to offer trade customers a quick turnaround and an excellent print quality with the new Kornit Max technology.” imagesmag.uk/Stefan-Milaszewicz Hybrid Services, the exclusive Mimaki distributor for the UK and Ireland, has appointed Rob Kaziewicz to the newly created role of assistant technical manager. Further strengthening Hybrid’s technical services team, Rob has more than 30 years’ experience in the wide format printing industry. “Rob’s appointment is a key strategical move for Hybrid, and his decades of customer-facing, technical Mimaki experience will be a major asset to our business,” commented Chris Adams, Hybrid’s technical manager. “He brings a huge amount of knowhow in the wide format industry and will be heavily involved in every aspect of our support function, including engineer and sales training, customer support and liaising with our reseller partners and Mimaki’s technical teams.” imagesmag.uk/Rob-Kaziewicz Luxury Lockstitch UK (LLUK) has appointed Antony Boon as its group operations director. It’s a new support role for the CEO and the company, which is a bespoke manufacturing facility for luxury goods that offers specialist finishes in techniques such as embroidery and hand sewing. “His wealth of manufacturing knowledge and expertise will ensure our next steps are big, well executed and set-up for success,” wrote founder and CEO Rachel Walker on LinkedIn. Antony commented: “I am looking forward to building an operational system that will allow the company to grow at pace.” imagesmag.uk/Antony-Boon Katie Ryan has been promoted to business development manager at Westcoast Workwear. She joined the print and embroidery business two years ago to cover staff holidays, and was given the opportunity to set up the print department, taking on the role of head of print production in March 2022. Previously a machine operative with experience of Happy, Tajima, Merlin and Brother embroidery machines, as well as a graphic designer, she has overseen the growth of the print department, including the purchase of a Sublistar Gen X direct-to-film printer from Midwest. imagesmag.uk/Katie-Ryan CHANGING FACES Follow us on LinkedIn @ImagesMagUK T-shirt made from seaweed makes its debut Keel Labs has made a T-shirt made from the seaweed-based Kelsun Fibre. The sustainable materials company, which developed the Kelsun T-Shirt in collaboration with climate activist and environmental educator Aditi Mayer, created the T-shirt “to demonstrate Kelsun’s plug-and-play potential in replacing conventional fibres used in the textile industry”. It was made using a 70% Kelsun/30% cotton blended yarn on industry-standard knitting machines, and also features a screen print using Living Ink’s Algae Ink of Spun K, Keel Labs’ signature brand element. According to the company, Kelsun is able to reduce water usage by 70 times and land use by 100% when compared to cotton by utilising seaweed. imagesmag.uk/Kelsun-Tee Right: The Kelsun T-Shirt is made from a seaweed-based fibre Stefan Milaszewicz Rob Kaziewicz Antony Boon Katie Ryan

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INDUSTRY NEWS www.images-magazine.com 10 images MARCH 2024 # 100 Meryl Streep Whether it’s pedigree pups or mangy mutts, decorators’ dogs are valued members of staff at embroidery and print shops from Barking to Furness. This month we have the magnificent Meryl Streep from Printigo in Birmingham Full name: Meryl Streep Breed: Miniature dachshund Age: Just over two years old Time at company: Two years – we started her young! Job titles: Printigo pup Job descriptions: Her job includes meet and greet, security and model (she has starred on our billboard) Special skills: Being small enough to fit under the cupboards and shelves and clear out anything that’s fallen under them. Favourite colours: 368 C, because that’s the Printigo logo colour. www.printigo.com Our 100th Print Shop Pooch! This month marks our 100th Print Shop Pooch column - a landmark in canine-centred journalism! Since the inimitable Pooh from Monster Press starred in the very first column in October 2015, each issue we’ve hounded (sorry) garment decorators to feature their dogs and share their work tails (again, sorry!) in Images. It’s one of the most popular sections of the magazine, with countless readers telling us it’s the first place they turn to when they paws (last one, promise) from their work for a cuppa and read through their favourite trade mag. To all the dogs that have taken part over the years, and their owners: you’re all barking mad and we are very grateful for that. Thank you for providing much fun, fur and humour, and here’s to the next 100. PRINT SHOP POOCHES # 1 Pooh from Monster Press In 2015, Pooh became our first-ever Print Shop Pooch. Hers were some of the funniest photos we have ever received, as we would expect from the crew at Monster Press! Pooh has now reached the grand old age of 16, reports Will Petersen of Monster Press, and is happily retired. “She has calmed down a lot since her rumbunctious younger years of tackling Gildan box agility courses and scurrying. She now spends her days snuffling for crumbs and kicking back and taking it easy.” www.monsterpress.co.uk [Clockwise from left] Meryl joins her favourite furry friends on Printigo’s Mumbles POS stand; looking dashing in lime green doggy athleisurewear; ‘size is in the eye of the beholder’; and Meryl takes her head of customer service role extremely seriously Pooh in 2015 Now retired, Pooh in 2024 Watch Meryl expertly printing a T-shirt. Really. It’s the best video ever

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The Kornit Apollo DTG system is out of beta testing and available commercially The new Wilcom training centre New Wilcom training centre opens in the south-west Dean Roscoe has opened a new Wilcom training centre in Chard, Somerset. The Wilcom authorised trainer and creator of the online course www. wilcomtutorials.com moved to the new location in December from nearby Wellington, and now has space to teach eight people on site at a time. “The centre provides high-quality training and support for Wilcom embroidery software users of all levels and needs,” he explained. “The centre is conveniently located near the motorway and rail networks, and it alsooffers electric car charging, free wifi and refreshments for the learners.” For details and bookings, visit www.wilcomsoftware.co.uk. imagesmag.uk/Wilcom-training INDUSTRY NEWS www.images-magazine.com 14 images MARCH2024 Kornit Apollo now available commercially Following more than four years of development and beta testing, Kornit has announced the Apollo direct-togarment (DTG) printer is now available commercially. Mad Engine Global, which produces licensed apparel, has become one of the first customers, confirms Kornit. According to the manufacturer, the Apollo is capable of decorating more than 1.5 million garments each year with a single operator. “Backed by an advanced, proprietary automation system, the platform integrates versatile smart drying, concurrently managing various garment types with proficiency of up to 400 garments per hour,” Kornit explained. “The Apollo system is also extremely flexible, with the ability to scale on-demand and handle both bulk and one-offs.” Ronen Samuel, Kornit Digital’s CEO, added: “Kornit Apollo is the most advanced and proven solution on the market allowing digital production to go mainstream – creating real business opportunities for brands, fulfillers, and retailers.” imagesmag.uk/KornitApollo The new Viper Sidewinder from I-Group I-Group keeps inks moving with Sidewinder I-Group Technologies believes its latest product, the Viper Sidewinder, is set to “revolutionise ink and fluid handling”. “Designed to automate and streamline the process of ensuring inks and other fluids are always ready for use, the Sidewinder eliminates the challenges of settling, fallout, separation, or precipitation without the introduction of air bubbles into these solutions,” announced the company. “The Viper Sidewinder takes away the headache associated with constant monitoring and manual agitation of inks, offering a fully automated system that keeps fluids in motion 24 hours a day, seven days a week with automatic on and off cycles.” The Viper Sidewinder comes with two ring holders that hold a variety of ink containers found in the industry: it can hold up to 20 one-litre bottles at a time, as well as larger cubes such as 10-litre or 20-litre sizes; bespoke ring holders are also available. imagesmag.uk/IGroup-Sidewinder Find our digital editions online: imagesmag.uk/digital-issues

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INDUSTRY NEWS www.images-magazine.com 16 images MARCH2024 Follow us on Threads: @imagesmaguk DECORATED PRODUCT OF THE MONTH Head over to BBC iPlayer and click on the CBBC footballing drama, Jamie Johnson, and you’ll spot many bespoke garments and merch created by the talented team at Davensport for the show. The managing director of the Stockport-based business, Zubair Aziz, explains: “For Jamie Johnson, we had the privilege to design, supply and produce all the various items of clothing, sports kits and various accessories. These were worn or used by the cast and crew. “We designed, manufactured, printed and produced all the Hawx United home, away and training football kits. We also designed and manufactured the kits for the opposition team, Foxborough FC. “Other items – too numerous to mention – included kit for the Hawx United manager, coach and staff, as well as T-shirts, training bibs, and embroidered caps for the whole crew andcast.” The bespoke football kits were printed using dye sublimation on a Mimaki machine, then cut and sewn by Davensport. Other techniques used on the various items included embroidery using Happy machines, along with heat transfer vinyl and direct-to-film printing. The garments and headwear were from brands such as Stormtech, Beechfield, Precision Training, Aptus, Gildan, Result, Kustom Kit, Gamegear and Fruit Of The Loom. “The feedback was out of this world,” reveals Zubair. “They loved the stuff we did for them and the service we provided. In the high-pressure, ondemand TV and film environment you have to be ready for the unexpected. We were kept on our toes and delivered every time.” It is, he reports, “awesome” having items made by Davensport on the small screen. “Seeing the stuff we produced on TV is one of the best accolades and makes all the hard work worthwhile.” davensportltd Below: See Davenspo creations television was aweso saysZubai Right:The bespoke football ki weremade usinga Mimaki dy subprinte nsportltd eing rt’s on ome, ir e its e yeer [L-R] Brian Walker, CEO of Image Armor, with Colin Marsh, MD of Resolute Resolute partners with Image Armor to bring US-made DTF inks to UK Resolute signed an exclusive directto-film (DTF) ink deal with US-based manufacturer Image Armor at the Impressions Expo Long Beach trade show in January. The British company, which specialises in DTF printing, is now offering its customers the latest Image Armor DTF inks. Made in the US, the inks contain no ethylene glycol, which Resolute says means they offer “a more environmentally friendly solution without compromising on quality”. In addition, the white ink is said to have “remarkable opacity, ensuring your designs shine on any substrate”, while all the inks in the range have a built-in ‘anti-clogging’ technology that promises a “smoother” printing process as well as reducing the frequency of the head cleans. Resolute will give customers a generic ICC profile for both hot and cold peel films when buying the Image Armor DTF inks, which it says will ensure that users “can seamlessly integrate these inks into their existing workflows”. imagesmag.uk/Resolute-Image-Armor CEO Carey Trevill to step down from theBPMA Cary Trevill will leave her role as CEO of the BPMA later this month. Originally recruited as a part-time, interim CEO at the association for a six-month period when the pandemic broke in 2020, Carey will use the time to focus more on her own businesses. Her planned departure was announced at the BPMA Awards Dinner on 24 January 2024 by the chair Haydn Willetts and vice chair Clive Allcott. Haydn thanked Trevill for the work she had completed since joining the association, noting that despite taking the reins “during a period of intense global economic disruption”, she provided its members with guidance on everything from furlough and business grants to Brexit. imagesmag.uk/Carey-BPMA-depart Carey Trevill is leaving her role as CEO of the BPMA later this month

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INDUSTRY NEWS www.images-magazine.com 18 images MARCH2024 Zoe Thorpe, head of production at KC Workwear in Southport, says her favourite product to decorate is the Klassic Sweatshirt (KK302) from Kustom Kit. An all-rounder, this hard-wearing sweat caters to all customers, says Zoe. “It takes print and embroidery really well — we’ve used it as our staff uniforms, and the washability is amazing!” Available in sizes XS up to 4XL, the Klassic Sweatshirt comes in black, navy and dark grey marl. Zoe adds: “It’s a cotton-faced sweatshirt, which gives it a luxury feel and is also great for printing. “When embroidering cotton-faced products though, they can tend to leave pressure marks. “My tip is to use magnetic hoops so you don’t get any [marks], and if you don’t have magnetic hoops, just use a spray water bottle and a rubber brush to remove the pressure marks!” imagesmag.uk/Mar24-RC www.kc-workwear.com Want to know what your industry colleagues really think of the garments and accessories they decorate? Each issue, one reader tells us why they rate a particular product The KK302’s cotton-faced fabric is perfect for both print and embroidery, says Zoe Tajima and Coloreel launch new software Tajima Software Solutions and Coloreel unveiled new Pulse ID personalisation software in February. The software is said to be “a significant advancement for personalisation of embroidery designs”. “Designed to cater to both in-store and online shopping experiences, the new software Pulse ID allows users to customise their embroidery. It offers the flexibility to edit text, add effects, and colours,” says Coloreel, the company behind the Coloreel instantthread colouring unit. Tajima Software Solutions, previously known as Pulse Microsystems, is part of the Tajima Group, which manufactures Tajima embroidery machines. “This collaboration marks a full integration of the Coloreel technology with Pulse ID and Tajima’s embroidery machines. The result is a seamless and efficient solution, ideal for in-store embroidery services or for enhancing theofferings of online shops.” imagesmag.uk/Tajima-Coloreel Snickers unveils new lightweight mid-layers Snickers Workwear has introduced a new range of wind-protective jackets and hoodies. The lightweight mid-layers can also be worn as an outer layer during warmer weather. Aavailable in brandnew colours, the styles include the Windblocker Half-Zip Hoodie, Lightweight Flexiwork Mid-Layer Jacket, and Windproof Soft-Shell Jacket for women. Snickers commented: “Whatever Snickers Workwear mid-layer you choose, you can be sure that they all have body-mapping designs for a great fit, outstanding functionality and longlasting comfort – all day, every day.” imagesmag.uk/Snickers-Mid-2024 Coloreel and Tajima Software Solutions have teamedup tooffernew software READERS’ CHOICE Printigo This vibrant logo was printed using DTF by Printigo in Birmingham for Incredible Surplus. imagesmag.uk/Printigo-IS DECORATOR REPORT New mid-layer options from Snickers Read our full-length Decorator Reports online: www.images-magazine.com

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INDUSTRY NEWS www.images-magazine.com 20 images MARCH2024 Stay in the picture with our Instagram feed: @imagesmaguk Print N Go Shop completes move to new premises The Kettering Print N Go Shop has moved to new, larger premises in the town. Managing directors Jo and Nick Gamble had been looking for the right shop for their print and embroidery business for 18 months that would offer them more space. Just before Christmas, they got the keys to a shop on Rockingham Street and began renovating it while still operating their old shop on Charles Street. “The move was very stressful and we had lots of teething problems from wifi to the machines not liking being moved, then not working,” explained Jo. The move is paying off, however, with increased footfall already at the Rockingham Street premises. In addition, the space has been doubled, giving them a much bigger showroom and print area. Print N Go Shop offers vinyl printing and embroidery along with white ink toner printing, print-andcut, and sublimation. imagesmag.uk/PrintNGo-2024 Jo Gamble and Emily Fedorowycz, the Mayor Of Kettering, outside the new Print N Go Shop Mimaki Europe has appointed Takao Terashima as its new managing director. Takao, who beganhis career at Mimaki in 1997, has been working as the senior general manager of the Asia Oceania Business Unit since 2017. Succeeding Takahiro Hiraki as managing director of Mimaki Europe, Takao commented: “I am delighted to take on the role of managing director of Mimaki Europe in what is a landmark year for the branch. Celebrating the 20th anniversary of the European headquarters, we can look back on the past two decades proudly, thanks to the ongoing hardwork andeffort of the team. Mimaki is exclusively distributed in the UK and Ireland by Hybrid Services. imagesmag.uk/Takao-Terashima Prestige Leisure UK (PLUK) promoted Sam Harrison to senior business development manager last month. Previously business development manager, Sam has been with PLUK since October 2020. His new role includes more responsibility within the sales team, he confirmed. “I will now overlook part of the team, sharing industry knowledge and experience to current colleagues and new starters.” He added: “I’m delighted to take my next step up the ladder at PLUK, in an industry I love working in. We already have an excellent business development team, I very much look forward to helping the team grow even stronger for the foreseeable future.” imagesmag.uk/Sam-Harrison MattMills has joined Barudan as an embroidery machine service technician. Previously withGSUK, he joined the embroidery machine manufacturer at its headquarters in Alfreton, Derbyshire on 15 January 2024. His new role involves the preparation of new embroidery machines along with their delivery and installation. He will also be carrying out all kinds of service work on the latest and older Barudan models, explained the distributor. “I completed all of my machine engineer training on Barudans, at McPherson’s in 1992-2003, so I am delighted to be working with Barudan once again!” he explained. imagesmag.uk/Matt-Mills CHANGING FACES Dae Ha introduces certified hot melt powder to the UK Stocks have now arrived in the UK of Dae Ha DTF Powder. Distributed in the UK by Dae Ha Europe, the Okeo-Tex-certified, polyurethanebased (TPU) hot melt powder promises to deliver “exceptional softness, stretchiness and durability” in direct-to-film (DTF) transfers. According to the distributor, it allows decorators to save on energy costs because it offers “a lower melting point than with many powders”. It also reports that the powder is widely used for swimsuit decoration and high flexibility fabrics. In addition, Dae Ha UK/Europe has launched 30cm-wide DTF film rolls, which are in stock now and can be hot peeled. imagesmag.uk/Dae-Ha-DTF-Powder Dae Ha UK has introduced a new hot melt powder and 30cm-wide film for DTF printing Takao Terashima Sam Harrison MattMills

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www.images-magazine.com 22 images MARCH 2024 INDUSTRY NEWS: SPECIAL REPORT Follow us on X @imagesmaguk Researchers develop glowing thread for use with embroidery machines Researchers at Purdue University in the US have developed an electroluminescent (EL) thread, which glows when an electrical current is passed through it, that is compatible with embroidery machines. A paper published in Science Advances in January reported how the team had created multicolour EL threads that are compatible with embroidery machines and which could be used on various fabrics, and are durable against folding, stretching and repetitive machine washes. Stitching speeds in excess of 350spm were achieved. Previously, the integrity of EL threads was compromised by machine embroidery. Transformative applications Chi Hwan Lee, associate professor of biomedical engineering and mechanical engineering at Purdue University, and one of the authors of the paper, told Images: “The EL threads could offer transformative applications across multiple sectors due to their unique properties of flexibility, durability, and luminosity. “In the fashion and apparel industry, they enable the creation of dynamic, customisable clothing and accessories, adding a new dimension to personal style. Safety and emergency services can significantly benefit from enhanced visibility and functionality in gear, making them crucial for night workers and emergency responders. “The healthcare sector may see these threads used in smart garments for patient monitoring, while in home décor, they promise interactive and customisable design elements. Advertising and branding can leverage these threads for eye-catching, illuminated logos and promotions. The entertainment and event management industries can utilise them for visually stunning performances and venue decorations. “Additionally, their potential use in automotive interiors and military gear highlights their versatility, appealing to a wide range of industries seeking innovative, functional, and aesthetically pleasing textile solutions.” The next phase in the research will see the team focusing on integrating the EL threads with wearable sensors for real-time visualisation, which he says will be particularly beneficial in healthcare and fitness for monitoring vital statistics. Work also needs to be done to develop compact, sustainable power sources, as well as expanding the range of colours and lighting effects. “Testing the electroluminescent threads with more industrial-style embroidery machines, such as Happy, Barudan, or Tajima, is indeed a logical next step in our research and development process,” he added. “This is crucial for assessing their scalability and suitability for mass production. We are seeking collaboration for this endeavour.” He hopes the EL threads will be commercially available in the near future, although he emphasises this is dependent on several key factors, the first of which is ensuring they can be produced without prohibitive costs. Industry partnerships “Secondly, regulatory approvals and compliance with standards will play a critical role, especially in industries like healthcare and safety. Finally, market readiness and consumer acceptance are essential for successful commercialisation. Partnerships with industry players and continued innovation are likely to drive these threads towards market readiness. However, the exact timeline remains uncertain and is contingent upon these multiple factors aligning effectively. “We are also actively seeking partners or venture capitalists to help commercialise this technology.” imagesmag.uk/EL-Threads The team at Purdue University embroidered the EL threads onto various fabrics

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INDUSTRY NEWS www.images-magazine.com 24 images MARCH2024 Have a print or embroidery you’re particularly proud of and want to showcase it to your industry colleagues in a Decorator Report? Get in touch via social media (@ImagesMagUK) or email (editorial@images-magazine.com) using ‘Decorator report’ as the subject line. BPMA Awards winners announced The Outdoors Company was announced as the winner of ‘The Supplier Marketing Campaign of the Year’ for its Eco Range at the BPMA Annual Awards Dinner in January. The annual awards, which took place during the Merchandise World trade show, were hosted by BPMA chairman Haydn Willetts and BPMA vice chairman Clive Allcott. The category sponsors included Geiger, BIC Graphic, Impression Europe, Preseli, PF Concept, Direct Textiles & Bags, XD Connects, and Briman Group. imagesmag.uk/BPMA-Awards-2024 The Outdoors Company won The Supplier Marketing Campaign of the Year at the BPMA Annual Awards Wilflex adds bio-derived inks Avient Corporation, owner of Wilflex, Rutland and Union inks, has launched a screen printing ink made with bio-derived content. The Wilflex Revive bio plastisol inks contain 50-59% bio-derived content, which the manufacturer claims offers “an innovative way for screen printers to achieve sustainability goals while offering the same easy printing experience as a typical plastisol ink”. The Revive inks are currently offered in a base and white ink and are compatible with the Wilflex Epic PC Express Color Mixing System, which Avient says will allow printers to achieve hundreds of Pantone-approved colours when used together with Wilflex Inks IMS 3.0 mixing software. Revive bio plastisol inks are available now from Wilflex distributors. imagesmag.uk/Wilflex-Revive The Cotton Textile Company This intricate logo was embroidered onto hammam towels by The Cotton Textile Company in Brentwood for Plymouth Gin. imagesmag.uk/TCTC-Gin DECORATOR REPORT Celebrating 35 years of Artistri inks Ink manufacturer DuPont is marking 35 years since the launch of its DuPont Artistri Digital Inks. The brand began in 1989 with the launch of Cromalin pigment dispersions. In 2000, the first Artistri water-based pigment inks landed, followed by a direct-to-garment (DTG) ink set in 2005. Then, in 2023, DuPont innovation unveiled its first direct-to-film (DTF) digital ink set. imagesmag.uk/35-Artistri DuPont is marking 35 years since the launch of its Artistri Digital Inks Follow us on Facebook: @imagesmaguk

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INDUSTRY NEWS www.images-magazine.com 26 images MARCH2024 Watch our latest videos on Vimeo: @imagesmaguk Daiber launches its 2024 catalogue The new, main catalogue for 2024 from Gustav Daiber is now available. The 50-page catalogue includes 40 new products from its brands, James & Nicholson and Myrtle Beach. Most are available now, with the rest expected at the end of March. New styles include the soft Sherpa Jacket, made from the 100% recycled polyester Sherpa fleece. The same Sherpa fleece is used with organic cotton in the new Ladies’/Men’s Doubleface Jacket. “To coincide with the launch of the 2024 collection, the Workwear Colour Selector will also be expanded to include the new products and colour extensions,” said the company. “This service by Daiber makes it possible to clearly display all workwear products in a collection in the available colours.” James & Nicholson and Myrtle Beach are distributed in the UK by Fusible Systems. imagesmag.uk/Daiber-2024 Daiber has launched its main catalogue for 2024 LHD Custom Clothing This stunning design was embroidered by LHD Custom Clothing in Lerwick, Shetland, for the Scalloway Fire Festival 2024. imagesmag.uk/LHD-Fire DECORATOR REPORT PaulHodgehas been appointed as production manager at Corporate Trade Supplies (CTS) UK. He joins from Workwear Express, where he had been print manager for 16 years. “I’m absolutely over the moon with my new job role as production manager at CTS,” Paul said. “My main focus is the day-to-day running of the embroidery and DTF departments, which is pretty new to me having spent 16 years screen printing, but I’m well up for the challenge. “I’ve inherited a fantastic little team and really can’t wait for the future in the company.” imagesmag.uk/Paul-Hodge LissCookehas been promoted from digital embroidery manager to production and creative manager at the London embroidery specialist, Hand & Lock (H&L). “Within my new role, I will be working alongside the production department, working on our hand embroidery design and development for a range of projects including fashion, interiors and costume,” she explained. H&L has also promoted Alice Slater to digital embroidery designer and coordinator. Alice, who was previously junior digital embroidery designer, said: “I will be overseeing the daily running of the digital embroidery department, designing and working with our clients on bespoke projects inhouse at our central London studio whilst continuing to develop our sample ranges, techniques and exploring new technology within the machine embroidery world. “I am really looking forward to continuing on with the growth of the department with the guidance of Liss.” imagesmag.uk/Liss-Alice FOL International, which distributes the Fruit of Loom, Russell Europe and Jerzees brands, has appointed twonew staff to the marketing team. Marketing manager Marthe Kazur is responsible for the Jerzees brand’s marketing in the European market, where it is launching this year, while marketing assistant Anita Cengiz is focused on the Fruit of the Loom and Russell Europe brands, as well as assisting Marthe in building the Jerzees brand in the European market. “The Jerzees launch gives us the ability to appeal to a whole new generation within the printing industry,” explained Marthe. “We see this as a great opportunity to rejuvenate and continue strengthening our communication with our core target audience.” imagesmag.uk/Marthe-Anita CHANGING FACES PaulHodge LissCooke Alice Slater [L-R] Marketing manager Marthe Kazur and marketing assistant Anita Cengiz

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Attacks by Houthis militants in the Red Sea in recent months are having an unwelcome effect on the shipping sector. Hit hard during the Covid pandemic [see ‘Stormy seas: A special report on the global shipping crisis’ in the September 2021 issue of Images –imagesmag.uk/ global-shipping], shipping companies had managed to return container rates to pre-pandemic levels by 2023. However, with container ships heading for Europe now having to divert round the Cape of Good Hope in order to avoid the Red Sea, the familiar problems of increased prices and transit times are bobbing to the surface again. Rerouting Michael Overy, director of HTV and DTF film supplier Dae Ha UK, notes that the rerouting is adding 10-14 days to the transit time, which from the Dae Ha factory in Korea was already 3438 days. “This has added fuel costs for the shipping lines, while also reducing global capacity in the container freight market, as with a return sailing from Far East/Europe/Far East, each ship cannot make the same number of round trip sailings per year. This has also had an impact on the price increases, as each ship became less profitable overnight.” David Sanders-Smith, managing director of garment manufacturer Result Clothing, reports that a shortage of containers returning to China and Bangladesh had, by mid-January, already increased shipping container costs from $1,500 to $6,000, which has a big impact on bulky garments. “During 2022, this [increase in container costs] increased padded winter jackets by up to £1.50,” he adds. He notes, however, that Result has a good winter stock and the company has so far managed to avoid With the current conflict in the Middle East making the Red Sea a no-go zone for many shipping companies, suppliers to the garment decoration industry are having to act quickly to minimise the costs and delays brought on by the rerouting of container ships around Africa. Three industry suppliers tell Images how they are responding passing on any extra freight prices to customers. “Result is determined to hold their much reduced prices at all costs so that we can continue to do our bit and help reduce inflation,” he confirms. Order early It’s not just container ships that are having to charge more – the crisis is having an in-direct, knock-on effect on airfreight as companies try to find alternative routes, explains Kathryn Shuttleworth, chief executive of childrenswear manufacturer The Parently Group. During past crises, the company has used train transport to ship goods, but that is not possible this time due to the situation in Russia and Ukraine. “From some regions, we have already seen a tripling and quadrupling of [shipping container] pricing,” she says. “With price reductions we brought in last year, before this situation could have been known, we are going to have to introduce a fair increase and pass some of this on.” Customers were given notice of the price increase, which takes effect on 1 March 2024, so they could mitigate the situation by ordering early. There will be delays to seasonal orders and there could be further price impacts, she adds. “We are appealing to customers to set out their requirements as early as possible and not rely on stock holding in the same way they have for the past couple of years. For those who have shown their commitment, stock is being allocated to them earlier than usual and we intend to keep communicating the situation as it affects shipping and specific specialist orders.” Michael reports that Dae Ha UK has adjusted its ordering patterns to cope with the delays, adding: “With large warehouse facilities and a number of shipments on their way at any one time, we’re always well placed compared to many other businesses that import from Asia. “We’ve already shipped additional stock of our highest selling products like DTF Film, One Flex PU, Glitter and Stretch Metallic, so we can see off any additional delays arising from lack of shipping capacity or containers.” Further cost increases While Michael believes there may be a further uptick in container prices through to spring, “there are no indicators as yet that the price increases will hit the highs of 2020/2021.” While it is hard to see the Covid pandemic in a positive light, one outcome of the large-scale disruption it brought to shipping is that suppliers are now well-practised in dealing with shipping crises. In turn, decorators know that if they take steps such as ordering early and keeping customers fully informed of potential delays, then their businesses can continue to thrive. Red Sea shipping crisis: how suppliers are reacting IS INDUSTRY ISSUES www.images-magazine.com 28 images MARCH2024

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www.images-magazine.com 30 images MARCH2024 INDUSTRY EVENT What do you see as the key trends in garment printing at the moment and how will this be reflected at Fespa? Customer demand for more sustainable fashion has been on the rise for quite some time now, and feedback from our community is that consumers are looking for more environmentally-conscious products that are manufactured using sustainably-sourced materials and energy-efficient production methods. In response to this, in recent years, we have seen an increase in the sustainable technologies, media and consumable alternatives on display at our global events. We therefore expect that these solutions will be pertinent across the exhibition halls and many exhibitors have already signalled that sustainability will be a core part of their onsite offering. There has also been significant demand from consumers for personalised garments that are specifically tailored to them. And, following the advancements in customisation-enabling technologies, garment producers are now able to meet this demand. However, we’re still seeing that the personalisation opportunity is still largely untapped. That’s why we launched Personalisation Experience last year. Returning in 2024, Personalisation Experience will enable attendees to delve further into the value of integrating personalised products into their offeringandoffer them the opportunity to network with a host of garment manufacturers, designers, embroiderers, printers and more. In addition to the Personalisation Experience exhibition, we also expect to see a number of personalisation-enabling solutions throughout the halls of Fespa Global Print Expo and [the co-located] Sportswear Pro. What new products are scheduled to launch at Fespa this year? Fespa Global Print Expo is a popular platform for suppliers launching new products and many exhibitors have indicated plans for product announcements. We often see that suppliers hold off on sharing details of their launches until much closer to, or even during, the show. However, we do know that there will be a handful of exhibitors launching recycled yarn textiles and PVC-free textiles, and that direct-to-fabric and direct-tofilm printers will be in the spotlight. Across six halls at the RAI, over 425 confirmed suppliers – including Brother, Epson, HanGlory, Mimaki, Kornit, MHM, and Roland – are set to showcase the latest innovations in technology, software, consumables and media. There’s a whole range of solutions to be discovered for end-to-end garment production. This includes hundreds of solutions on display for textile printers and garment producers, such as Michael Ryan Fespa Global Print Expo 2024: Preview Michael Ryan, the head of Fespa Global Print Expo, reveals what the European trade show holds in store for Images readers in 2024 direct-to-film and direct-to-garment printers, garment embellishment, dye sublimation, and much more. Which bit of the show are you most excited about? Personally, I am looking forward to the launch of the new Sportswear Pro event. The event is exclusively dedicated to sportswear manufacturing and will feature an exhibition space showcasing end-to-end manufacturing solutions for sportswear, smart wearables, footwear and more, as well as a comprehensive one-day conference. What seminars or special events are taking place? The Personalisation Experience conference includes confirmed speakers from NFL Europe, Media Clip, Printful, ZipCon and more, and will cover topics such as the latest innovations in and the future of personalisation. The Sportswear Pro conference will delve into automation, customisation, sustainable sportswear alternatives, on-demand production and provide visitors with a deeper understanding of the future of the industry. We look forward to hearing from confirmed speakers including Paul Foulkes-Arellano, founder of Circuthon; Samantha Taylor, founder of The Good Factory; Lucy Maguire, senior trends editor at Vogue Business; Soudi Masouleh, sportswear design specialist and Krisjanis Ozols, head of operations, strategic partnership & R&D, Printful. New for 2024 is Personalise Make Wear. The feature, hosted by Fespa’s textile ambassador and CEO of TextIntel, Debbie McKeegan, will showcase the on-demand, personalised, sustainable and digital production of sportswear, such as sports leggings, tops, shorts and sports-related merchandise. www.fespaglobalprintexpo.com Fespa Global Print Expo 2024, Personalisation Experience and Sportswear Pro are being held on 19-22 March 2024 at RAI Amsterdam in The Netherlands. www.fespaglobalprintexpo.com/2024-registration. The new Sportswear Pro event is dedicated to sportswear manufacturing Fespa Global Print Expo is taking place in Amsterdam later this month

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