Resist Printing Process | Methods of Resist Printing

Resist Printing:
With the old method of physical resist printing, (hydrophobic) products or printing pastes were applied to the fabric to avoid contact and penetration when the fabric was subsequently immersed in the dyeing liquor(Batik). Now the most diffused printing system is the chemical resist printing carried out with different printing methods, using pastes containing chemicals, which avoid fixation of background dyes (particularly for reactives applied on fabrics made of cellulose fibers). 
Resist printing
Resist or reserve printing is related to discharge printing in that the end-results are often indistinguishable. The resist style, however, offers the advantage that dyes of great chemical stability, which could not be discharged, can be resisted to give prints of high color fastness standards.

The resisting agents employed, then as now, function either mechanically or chemically or, sometimes, in both ways.

The mechanical resisting agents include waxes, fats, resins, thickeners and pigments, such as china clay, the oxides of zinc and titanium, and sulphates of lead and barium. Such mechanical resisting agents simply form a physical barrier between the fabric and the colorant. They are mainly used for the older, coarser and, perhaps, more decorative styles in which breadth of effect and variety of tone in the resisted areas are of more importance than sharp definition of the pattern.

Chemical-resisting agents include a wide variety of chemical compounds, such as acids, alkalis, various salts, and oxidising and reducing agents. They prevent fixation or development of the ground color by chemically reacting with the dye or with the reagents necessary for its fixation or formation.

Resist print pastes that contain a high proportion of insoluble mechanical-resisting agents impose certain restrictions during the printing process. In copper-roller printing, such print pastes are apt to ‘stick-in’ in the engraving, especially in very fine patterns, and to ensure good results a brush furnisher is indispensable in keeping the engraving clean. In screen printing it is important to ensure that the solid particles are not coarse enough to block the screen mesh. It is, therefore, customary in this case to strain the print paste through a sieve which has a finer mesh than that of the actual printing screen.

Some of the printing methods are detailed in the following:

a) Resist printing on covered background: A pad dye is applied and dried; the printing is carried out with printing pastes containing products avoiding the fixing of background color (but they do not avoid the fixing of any brightener used). The fabric is then dried, steamed and washed (this is the most diffused resist printing method).

b) Resist printing by over dyeing: The operations of the resist printing method previously detailed are carried out in inverse sequence; therefore the fabric is first printed and then covered.

c) Printing on polyester: Polyester printing must be carried out applying the resist-discharge printing method. Printing pastes containing both the discharge and resist products applied on covered background must be used. 
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Mazharul Islam Kiron is a textile consultant and researcher on online business promotion. He is working with one European textile machinery company as a country agent. He is also a contributor of Wikipedia.

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