Checking our eco-footprint.

Green-eco-labelOn a global scale we are paying a lot more attention to the ecological impression we make on the planet than ever before. Quite rightly we all want to do our bit to reduce the impact we cause in our everyday lives. So, not surprisingly many of our customers ask us: “how environmentally friendly is Digital Textile Printing?”

Research is telling us that whilst no manufacturing process is without impact on the environment, Digital Textile Printing is certainly one of the friendlier in todays UK textile industry.

Digital textile printing is growing in popularity for designers choosing a more environmentally aware process compared to many of the other traditional printing and dyeing methods . It’s reputation as the eco-friendliest of all the printing processes is predominantly measured through the reduced amount of waste that results from this method.

Here at the Silk Bureau we are mindful of the waste that is easily created in our manufacturing process and therefore take steps to reduce it to a minimum. We don’t stop at just monitoring our water and coating consumption.

In answer to your question, here are some points to consider when choosing the Silk Bureau to produce your fabulous prints;

Digital printing – Creates less wasteink-cartridges
  • There are no screens or plates to produce (as for screen print or rotary printing) and so needs less setup equipment.
  • Printing direct to fabric means less wasted surplus ink (unlike dyeing) through precise applicaton of the artwork.
  • There is less use of bleaches, chemicals and water than traditional methods.
  • Our machinery is designed to last. We are diligent with our maintenance programs and our staff are highly trained in their operation. Taking care of the machinery prolongs its lifespan.
  • Using the best quality inks through the print heads stops clogging and waste.
  • There are unavoidable fabric off-cuts caused by rolling on and off the printer beds, testing print heads, etc. Mindful not to clog our landfill sites and to protect your copyright, we send all wasted fabric for recycling. Once collected it is shredded. The shredded material is then taken down a waste-to-energy route where it will be used to create electricity by way of incineration at a local company, just a few miles away.
Sublimation printing – Zero wastegreen swirl
  • This process is possibly one of the friendliest.
  • Artwork is first printed onto a transfer paper, which we source from sustainable forest crops, after use it is then recycled through a professional waste collection service.
  • The dyes are cured using a combined pressure and dry heat process that does not require water.
  • No excessive wasted consumables involved.

We have included some eco-friendly fabrics in our range such as *Tencel and *Bamboo created with sustainable organic substances.

*Tencel is one of the most environmentally friendly fabrics available. Regenerated from sustainably grown wood cellulose.

*Bamboo fabric is a natural textile made from the pulp of bamboo grass. The Bamboo used to produce fabrics (not the same as Panda food) is considered one of the most sustainable plants because it grows quickly and does not require chemicals or irrigation and biodegrades quickly.


In conclusion, we are aware that all forms of textile printing will have an environmental impact – it’s just apparent that our digital textile printing methods are among the friendliest and that we at the Silk Bureau are striving to do our bit where ever possible.