Why do designers and printers use flocking?What is it?Flocking is a decorative process that gives images a raised, velvet-like look and feel. Occasionally, you see it on wallpaper or T-shirts. As a designer or printer, you should aware of:

  • what flocking is
  • how to use it
  • features and benefits.
Success story: This picture is the front cover of a case bound/hard covered book we bound for a printer in Calgary. The wording “ROAD TRIPS” is the fuzzy material called flocking. Beneath the flocking, the words “& others diversions” is normal black offset printing.  It is very hard to photograph flocking in a way to effectively shows you what it is actually like.  With each blog I give you an opportunity to request a sample.  Usually a description of a product and pictures give you a good understanding of some unusual processes, but in the case of flocking I highly recommend that you request a sample. You have to see flocking and feel it, to really understand what it is.How is it done?
Flocking is a process of dropping millions of miniature fibers called ‘flock’ on a wet pattern-glued surface. Described as simply as possible:

  • Sheets up to 20 X 26 are printed in the normal process leaving blank the areas where flocking is to be applied
  • Wet glue is applied to the areas to be flocked
  • Flocking material (fibres) is dropped onto the glued surface areas

Factors to consider:

  • Pantone colour matching may be available for an up charge of approximately $1000.
  • Only one colour of flocking per pass can be done; two colours require two passes

In the future, I expect to see more flocking in the marketplace—because it differentiates your product; flocking is relatively rare; end users are drawn to touch the flocking……its’ tactile.