Whether developing a woven fabric, a coated fabric, a leather or a hard surface material such as laminate or extruded plastic, a fundamental understanding of the process required to make the product is essential to its ultimate success.
Selecting a mill with the necessary capabilities relative to yarn bank and color palette, as well as cost and performance of final product, is the first step for creating a woven fabric. Manageable minimums are also a consideration, along with how easy the mill is to work with in the development stage. Does the mill have a good bank of weaves and a variety of yarn types for interpreting art work and creating the desired effect?
In the case of matching, how good is the lab? Can they interpret a variety of control samples and translate the approved formula into reliable production runs? If printing is involved, can that mill accurately match the desired colors once separated for printing.
Detailed and easy-to-understand weaving, printing or matching instructions are a requirement in order to effectively communicate with the technical people in manufacturing. Knowing the language to correct a color or a weave effect speeds the development process. Reviewing sample blankets and strike-offs requires the ability to make color decisions for materials that ultimately work together to create the final product.
Kristie Strasen has extensive experience developing and coloring a wide range of materials. Her understanding for guiding the process including the final make-or-break color choices has contributed to her success as an award winning designer and colorist.