Printing on Fabric using Bubble Jet Set 2000

Bubble Jet Set 2000 is no longer available from George Weil

Bubble Jet Set 2000 BottleBubble Jet Set 2000 makes 100% cotton and silk fabrics suitable for inkjet printing. The fabric is soaked in the solution and when dry is ironed onto the shiny side of freezer paper, giving it support for feeding through an inkjet printer.

Please note this product is not suitable for laser printers.

Before starting it is important to check whether the item is ‘Prepared for Dyeing’ (PFD) or requires scouring to remove any grease, oil or starch. Run a few droplets of cold water onto the fabric. If they soak in quickly, no scour is necessary. To remove starches, size and oils, add 5mls of Synthrapol (a non-ionic detergent) along with 2-3 litres of water for each 100gms of material. Stir gently over a 15 min period, and then rinse thoroughly in warm water. It is possible to use household detergent, but the alkaline residue may affect the final colour or wash fastness.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Shake the bottle well and pour the required amount of Bubble Jet Set 2000 into a flat pan such as a cat litter tray.
  2. Submerge the cut fabric into the solution of Bubble Jet Set 2000 and allow to soak for at least 5 minutes.
  3. Lift the fabric out slowly, being careful not to fold it, and allow the excess solution to drip off. Do not wring.
  4. Lay the fabric flat onto a towel and allow to dry thoroughly. Using a hairdryer will help speed up the process but do not use a tumble dryer.
  5. Cut your freezer paper slightly larger than the fabric.
  6. Iron the dried fabric to the shiny side of the freezer paper (the wax-like coating will melt easily and form a temporary bond).
  7. Cut off the excess freezer paper. Loose threads should also be cut to prevent them tangling in your printer.
  8. Print your digital image onto the fabric side using an inkjet or bubble jet printer and allow to cure for at least 30 minutes, ideally 24 hours. DO NOT ATTEMPT TO PRINT YOUR IMAGE USING A LASER PRINTER.
  9. This step is key to finishing the bonding process and will make the image permanent on your fabric. It must be completed at this stage and not after the print has been included in the project piece.
    Not all the ink is absorbed into the fabric and a small residue will be present after curing. This residue must be rinsed off before the fabric is used or worn. Synthrapol will both help fix the ink and remove the surplus without back staining. Peel fabric away from the freezer paper to rinse in a solution of Synthrapol. Use half a teaspoon to 5 litres water, submerge the fabric and agitate continuously for 2-3 minutes. Rinse printed fabric sheets one at a time to avoid image transfer between sheets.
  10. Lay the fabric flat onto a towel and allow to dry thoroughly.

Range of Inkjet FabricsWe also carry a range of pre-treated fabrics which come with a paper backing ready for feeding into your inkjet printer. The cotton and silk sheets come in packs of 10, and the organza sheets, which are very effective when layered, come in packs of 5. The silk is also sold ‘off the roll’ in lengths of 43cm x 50cm.

Additional tips:

  • Print the fabric using the gloss paper setting from your print options menu.
  • Ensure the prints have dried thoroughly before rinsing them with Synthrapol. Allow at least 30 minutes as the absolute minimum and up to 24 hours for the best results.
  • If the fabric is to be washed regularly the ink should be dye based. As with most dyed textiles, the print will fade on regular washing and exposure to strong sunlight. Hand washing garments in cool water will increase the life of the print. Most commercial print cartridges contain acid dye based inks.
  • Pigment based inks are more suitable for wall hangings that do not need to be washed. The colours are more intense but do not withstand rubbing when washed. These prints must be hand washed with care or dry-cleaned.
  • Bubble Jet Set 2000 is formulated for use on 100% cotton or 100% silk fabric. Results will not be consistent, or necessarily effective, when used on other fabrics.

Pre-Treated Silk with Printed on Digital Image

This is a sample of a digital image printed on the ready-treated printable silk fabric and the same can be achieved by treating the fabric yourself with Bubble Jet Set 2000. The advantage of Bubble Jet Set 2000 is that you are not limited by the range of ready-treated cotton and silk fabrics that are currently available on the market.

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