News

Joe Gotshall joins PCMC

January 24, 2018

Joe Gotshall has been named printing, coating and laminating regional sales manager at Paper Converting Machine Company (PCMC) in Green Bay, Wisc. He will be responsible for the sale of PCMC’s products in the southeastern U.S., as well as in Latin America. Gotshall has more than 15 years of sales experience in the industrial automation, …

News

Petersen promoted at Enduratex

January 23, 2018

Eric Petersen has been promoted to director of sales and marketing at Enduratex. In this expanded role, he will have oversight of the marketing for the company in addition to his role as manager of national sales. Petersen joined Enduratex in 2011 as sales manager and was previously associated with Omnova Solutions and Avery Dennison.

News

Stevenson and Woodie join HEYtex USA

January 22, 2018

Carol Stevenson has been named northeast sales manager and Eric Woodie has been named purchasing and logistics manager for HEYtex USA. Stevenson has experience in sales and marketing, is a Boston native and attended Emerson College. Woodie has experience in buying, planning, scheduling materials purchasing management, logistics and strategic sourcing.

News

Denney joins BondCote, Anderson retires

January 19, 2018

Martin Denney has been named president of BondCote, the American branch of the international textile group, HEYtex®, Bramsche, Germany. Denney succeeds Ted Anderson who retired after 14 years of leadership. Previously, Denney was president of North American operations for Gale Pacific Ltd. He has also held senior positions in general management, and sales and marketing. …

News

Small business employment infographic

January 18, 2018

SCORE, the nation’s largest network of volunteer, expert business mentors, has published an infographic depicting the current state of small business employment, including where small business owners are finding qualified workers and the specific challenges they face in filling open positions. More than half of all small business owners found it difficult to fill their …

News

SALTEX planned for Sept. 2018

January 17, 2018

The second SALTEX trade fair will be held Sept. 12–13, 2018, at the Dornbirn Exhibition Centre in Vorarlberg, Austria. The event will include a trade fair and a symposium on smart textiles and high-performance materials. The emerging smart textiles industry is a key technology of the future and a growing interest among industries outside of …

News

Polymer demand in Asia

January 16, 2018

Long regarded as the powerhouse of plastics processing, Asia accounted for over 46 percent of global polymer demand in 2016. China accounts for the largest polymer demand, and with manufacturing costs remaining relatively low, this this trend is likely to continue. AMI Consulting’s latest report in the global polymer demand series, “Polymer Demand in Asia,” …

News

Hygienix™ calls for presentations

January 15, 2018

INDA, the Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry, is seeking presentations for the fourth edition of Hygienix, the premier event for industry professionals in the absorbent hygiene and personal care markets. The conference will be held Nov. 5–8, 2018, at Loews Portofino Bay Hotel, in Orlando, Fla. The event will feature three days of program …

News

Elastomer-coated fabrics report

January 12, 2018

The elastomer-coated fabrics market is projected to reach $11.85 billion by 2022, at a CAGR of 4.16 percent for the period according to a new report by Research and Markets. Increased demand from end-use applications such as transportation, protective clothing, industrial and others is largely driving the market. The use of solvents in the production …

News

Drexel hosts innovation center

January 11, 2018

Drexel University, in collaboration with Department of Defense-supported Advanced Functional Fabrics of America (AFFOA), is establishing a statewide center that will help companies, entrepreneurs and innovators take their advanced-textile concepts from prototype to product. The Pennsylvania Fabric Discovery Center is the first hub located outside of AFFOA’s home state of Massachusetts. It will be part …

Business Members only content

Savvy cash management helps your bottom line

January 1, 2018

Cash flow—the amount of money flowing into and out of your shop—is an easy concept to understand, yet not always well managed. Not every owner is aware of the impact skillful cash management has on net income, probably because the importance of managing revenue is far easier to recognize in some types of businesses than …

Business Members only content

New IRS accounting method changes

October 1, 2017

The tax returns of many businesses in the specialty fabrics industry have been—and will most likely continue to be—extra thick. Thanks to newly issued “repair regulations,” tax return filings for last year included more work on “Form 3115, Application for Change in Accounting Method” than usual. Fortunately, the IRS recently made it easier for small …

Business Members only content

Smart documentation is key to selling your business

September 1, 2017

No matter where in the world we run our businesses, we aspire to be successful, profitable and happy. We have either started the business from nothing, purchased an existing enterprise or taken the reins of the family business. Often, we begin with limited skills, have minimal formal industry training and largely “learn by our mistakes.” …

Business Members only content

How to attract and hire exceptional employees

August 1, 2017

In the buyer’s market of recent years, it was probably easy for you to attract top-notch job candidates. Not so much today. With new job creation being healthier than expected in 2016, and further increases so far this year, finding and hiring the best candidates for your shop will no longer be a slam dunk. …

Business

Understand your customers’ personalities for better sales

July 1, 2017

Elemental keys to staying in sync and making the sale. The first thing you need to know is that your customers are different—from each other, and from you. You may feel that you already know that, but I can tell you that many business owners and professionals have lamented to me that the client they …

Business Members only content

Sustainability: good business

June 1, 2017

Rainier Industries succeeds with a light footprint and a firm handshake. For Rainier Industries Ltd., sustain-ability is more than just a buzzword—it’s a way of doing business. Although often associated with high expenses, Rainier president and CEO Scott Campbell considers sustainability an initiative that makes business sense. “It’s actually pretty easy and saves money,” he …

Business

Driving business during the slow season: entertaining clients

June 1, 2017

Everyone appreciates the time of year when things start to slow down. But after a recuperation stage, tent rental companies may find themselves twiddling their thumbs, waiting for clients to call. What do you do to drive business at these times? Many operations host a showcase or an open house, blending strategy and celebration. One …

Business

Handle with care

May 1, 2017

Layoffs or firings can mean trouble for everyone involved. It’s an unwelcome responsibility, but almost every business owner and manager will eventually come face-to-face with the disagreeable task of terminating one or more employees. “Firing people is one of the toughest, most unpleasant things you do as an employer,” says James Walsh in his book …

Business

U.S. trade policy

April 1, 2017

Last year was both a momentous and a productive year for the U.S. Industrial Fabrics Institute (USIFI) and the Narrow Fabrics Institute (NFI) divisions’ efforts in Washington, D.C. The text of the highly controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) limited damage to the U.S. textile industry to the greatest degree politically achievable; now the election of Donald …

Business

Pre-employment background checks

April 1, 2017

You may need them, but be careful. These days every new employee brings a possible threat to your business, including theft, sexual harassment, physical violence, identity theft, fraud and drug use. The potential for ruinous legal actions is higher today than ever before. That’s why a background check before you hire an applicant could save …

Feature

Working with architects

January 1, 2018

Key to the success of a productive partnership: exploration, preparation, communication and education, with a firm grasp of details and a final vision for the project. Fabrics and architecture have been partners for millennia and have worked together to create some of the most iconic, useful and beautiful structures in the world—from traditional Mongolian yurts …

Feature

Marine tension shade options

January 1, 2018

Marine fabricators help boat owners expand shading options with stretched fabric. It could easily be argued that the pleasures of boating are best appreciated on a deck rather than in a cabin. But protection from sun exposure requires more than that provided by a wide-brimmed hat. With that kind of coverage in mind, boat owners …

Feature

Creating a welcoming workplace to retain employees

January 1, 2018

To prevent employee turnover, create a workplace that provides continuous learning, competitive pay and benefits and open-minded management. Like many industries that rely on skilled workers, the specialty fabrics industry is facing a shortage of qualified personnel. As manufacturers and fabricators develop recruitment efforts to attract the next-generation workforce, management must simultaneously find strategies to …

Feature

Inspiration-driven marine fabrication, and sheltering San Francisco’s homeless

January 1, 2018

Having a really good life is not financially driven. It’s inspiration driven,” says Liz Diaz, MFC, owner of North Beach Marine Canvas in San Francisco, Calif. “Working on and around the water is a singularly lovely employment. I am inspired all the time by my location, by the San Francisco Design Center, by my tools …

Feature

On the march

December 1, 2017

For several years the U.S. military market has been characterized by base closures and troop drawdowns, which has had an admittedly dampening effect on the need for and spending on military textiles. The United States isn’t the only geographic market for these products, nor are these textiles limited to just our military; purchasers are found …

Feature

Protect and conserve potable water

December 1, 2017

If you’ve had a glass of clean water today, you can likely thank a fabric-based product. Engineered fabrics, membranes and geosynthetics perform behind-the-scenes work to ensure that communities have access to adequate potable water and clean waterways. Creative fabric uses also hold promise in delivering clean water in emerging markets—a meteoric task considering that 783 …

Feature

Narrow fabrics’ widening reach

December 1, 2017

Corporate administrators tend to base management decisions on the Pareto Principle (80 percent of business comes from 20 percent of the clientele). Textile engineer Connie Huffa argues that can be a shortsighted way of thinking. “Opportunities lie in the 20 percent—the business we all would have turned down 10 to 20 years ago,” says the …

Feature Members only content

Finding solutions: teamwork and initiative

December 1, 2017

Research shows that cross-functional collaboration can improve the ability to solve complex problems, deliver higher quality products and services faster, and boost customer satisfaction. To see these kinds of results means building a team that listens to customers and works across departments to find solutions. At Cooley Group, president and CEO Dan Dwight emphasizes the …

Feature

Bill Coppins turns a canvas shop into a design and development powerhouse

December 1, 2017

“We keep experimenting with a product until we get it right, which is really what we’re about,” says Bill Coppins, owner and director of W.A. Coppins Ltd. in Motueka, New Zealand. “With jobbing work you’re always competing against someone down the road. So I thought: Let’s get out there and develop our own product that …

Feature

New IFAI chairman Steve Ellington shares his vision for the Industrial Fabrics Association International

November 1, 2017

With the geopolitical challenges and opportunities the specialty fabrics industry faces, we, as an association, need to make sure that we continue to educate our members and provide them with opportunities,” says Steve Ellington, president of Trivantage LLC, Glen Raven’s distribution and marketing services subsidiary in Glen Raven, N.C. “We need to make sure that …

Advanced Textiles

New substrates for smart fabrics

January 1, 2018

Manufacturers of smart fabrics are looking for new, novel textile substrates. A key takeaway from the Smart Fabrics Program and E-Textiles Workshop at the 2017 IFAI Expo was the symbiotic relationship between smart technologies and the development of suitable textile substrates to facilitate the desired function. While the fashion apparel business has become increasingly commodity-driven, …

Geosynthetics Members only content

Geofoam solves construction challenges

January 1, 2018

High atop Hidden Peak, lightweight geofoam solves construction challenges the easy way. All projects have challenges, purpose and meaning, yet some projects mean a lot more to owners than others. It takes a visionary to leave a legacy, and Richard Bass, founder of Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort in Utah, fit the bill. Bass is …

Advanced Textiles

Training and education for the high-tech textile industry

December 1, 2017

According to Deloitte’s 2016 Global Manufacturing Competitive Index (GMCI) report, the United States looks set to overtake China as the world’s most competitive manufacturing nation within five years. The textile industry is a significant part of that repositioning in its moves to bring manufacturing back to North America. It is not enough, however, to bring …

Markets Members only content

Fabric installation at Renwick Gallery plays with perceptions

December 1, 2017

Since the 17th century (with the debut of the French École des Beaux-Arts), drawing has been the first basic skill taught to architects. This still holds true, despite the advent of computer aided drafting (CAD) and sophisticated rendering software. And today there is a segment of the architecture community rediscovering and embracing the messy hand-drawn …

Advanced Textiles

A new NAFTA?

December 1, 2017

As a presidential candidate, Donald Trump promised to improve U.S. trade deals, including the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). Since taking office and subsequently threatening to withdraw the United States from NAFTA unless the terms were renegotiated, Mexico and Canada have been cajoled to revisit the deal. The first round of tripartite talks commenced …

Markets Members only content

Fighting pink stain

November 1, 2017

The work “pink” brings to mind a little girl dressed as a princess, cotton candy at the county fair and plastic lawn flamingos. But for those in the marine industry, the word takes on a sinister connotation as a stain caused by streptoverticillium reticulum. It’s a far greater menace than a never-washed red garment laundered …

Advanced Textiles

Fabrics go multifunctional

October 31, 2017

Textiles have evolved from being commodity materials to providing an array of benefits, including additional comfort and protection, improved hygiene and support for health care. The innate nature of fibers can provide certain special characteristics—cotton adds breathability and a smooth hand, and wool offers thermal comfort, for example. But due to the growing need for …

Advanced Textiles

Eco-friendly antimicrobials and sustainable solutions

October 1, 2017

Antimicrobial properties are fast becoming a required treatment in textiles for applications that range from hospital drapes and linen to contract and domestic textiles as well as clothing. While offering protection from germs is a positive factor, there has been some disquiet concerning the environmental impact of antimicrobial treatments. In response, fiber and fabric manufacturers …

Advanced Textiles

Preventing permastink goes beyond antimicrobial solutions

September 1, 2017

It’s everywhere and it’s not attractive. Permastink—the unpleasant smell that won’t wash out of textile products—has become a topic of conversation for consumers and brands alike. Polyester and other synthetic fibers are the materials of choice for the active performance and athleisure styles consumers now wear throughout the day. Unfortunately, these synthetic fibers are perceived …

Markets Members only content

Museum of Modern Art fabric exhibition in 1956

September 1, 2017

In 1956, all of New York City’s art world was abuzz about a new exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA). It wasn’t the retrospective about the French Impressionist painter Henri Matisse, whose works were newly arrived in New York from Paris (a show that originated at the French National Museum of Modern Art), …

News

Joe Gotshall joins PCMC

January 24, 2018

Joe Gotshall has been named printing, coating and laminating regional sales manager at Paper Converting Machine Company (PCMC) in Green Bay, Wisc. He will be responsible for the sale of PCMC’s products in the southeastern U.S., as well as in Latin America. Gotshall has more than 15 years of sales experience in the industrial automation, …

News

Petersen promoted at Enduratex

January 23, 2018

Eric Petersen has been promoted to director of sales and marketing at Enduratex. In this expanded role, he will have oversight of the marketing for the company in addition to his role as manager of national sales. Petersen joined Enduratex in 2011 as sales manager and was previously associated with Omnova Solutions and Avery Dennison.

News

Stevenson and Woodie join HEYtex USA

January 22, 2018

Carol Stevenson has been named northeast sales manager and Eric Woodie has been named purchasing and logistics manager for HEYtex USA. Stevenson has experience in sales and marketing, is a Boston native and attended Emerson College. Woodie has experience in buying, planning, scheduling materials purchasing management, logistics and strategic sourcing.

News

Denney joins BondCote, Anderson retires

January 19, 2018

Martin Denney has been named president of BondCote, the American branch of the international textile group, HEYtex®, Bramsche, Germany. Denney succeeds Ted Anderson who retired after 14 years of leadership. Previously, Denney was president of North American operations for Gale Pacific Ltd. He has also held senior positions in general management, and sales and marketing. …

News

Small business employment infographic

January 18, 2018

SCORE, the nation’s largest network of volunteer, expert business mentors, has published an infographic depicting the current state of small business employment, including where small business owners are finding qualified workers and the specific challenges they face in filling open positions. More than half of all small business owners found it difficult to fill their …

News

SALTEX planned for Sept. 2018

January 17, 2018

The second SALTEX trade fair will be held Sept. 12–13, 2018, at the Dornbirn Exhibition Centre in Vorarlberg, Austria. The event will include a trade fair and a symposium on smart textiles and high-performance materials. The emerging smart textiles industry is a key technology of the future and a growing interest among industries outside of …

News

Polymer demand in Asia

January 16, 2018

Long regarded as the powerhouse of plastics processing, Asia accounted for over 46 percent of global polymer demand in 2016. China accounts for the largest polymer demand, and with manufacturing costs remaining relatively low, this this trend is likely to continue. AMI Consulting’s latest report in the global polymer demand series, “Polymer Demand in Asia,” …

News

Hygienix™ calls for presentations

January 15, 2018

INDA, the Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry, is seeking presentations for the fourth edition of Hygienix, the premier event for industry professionals in the absorbent hygiene and personal care markets. The conference will be held Nov. 5–8, 2018, at Loews Portofino Bay Hotel, in Orlando, Fla. The event will feature three days of program …

News

Elastomer-coated fabrics report

January 12, 2018

The elastomer-coated fabrics market is projected to reach $11.85 billion by 2022, at a CAGR of 4.16 percent for the period according to a new report by Research and Markets. Increased demand from end-use applications such as transportation, protective clothing, industrial and others is largely driving the market. The use of solvents in the production …

News

Drexel hosts innovation center

January 11, 2018

Drexel University, in collaboration with Department of Defense-supported Advanced Functional Fabrics of America (AFFOA), is establishing a statewide center that will help companies, entrepreneurs and innovators take their advanced-textile concepts from prototype to product. The Pennsylvania Fabric Discovery Center is the first hub located outside of AFFOA’s home state of Massachusetts. It will be part …

Products

Luxurious boat flooring

January 1, 2018

Infinity Woven Products LLC has introduced new designs to its Pattern Series collections of Luxury Woven Vinyl™ (LWV) flooring to the marine aftermarket. Manufactured and supplied in America, the newest designs are Current, Flax and Abacá, all created on state-of-the-art jacquard looms which manipulate individual yarns to form vibrant woven designs. Infinity’s LWV flooring is …

Products

Protective packaging

January 1, 2018

Cortec® has introduced EcoWeave®, a highly durable tarp-like film that protects expensive, heavy raw metal materials and finished products against corrosion. Made from the same type of woven polyolefin film used to wrap lumber, EcoWeave is tough yet lightweight and versatile. It offers a combination of tear resistance, durability, and VpCI® chemistry that works together …

Products

Colorfast inks

January 1, 2018

Huntsman Textile Effects has introduced a new range of reactive inks that deliver outstanding light- and weather-fastness for digital printing of polyester fibers. TERATOP® XKS HL inks are designed to help mills produce technical textiles with the highest color-fastness performance for the automotive interiors, outdoor furnishings and home textiles industries. Formulated for Kyocera print head …

Products

Durable cushion fabrics

January 1, 2018

Phifer’s new 2018 GeoBella® cushion and Phifertex® sling fabrics lines are marked by water-inspired blues and greens and varied textures. The GeoBella line of high-end, performance cushion fabrics mirrors the comfort of indoor furniture yet has the stability, strength and durability needed for high-traffic applications. Phifertex fabrics for outdoor seating combine clean lines and a …

Products

Advanced awning fabric

January 1, 2018

Cooley Group has launched Weathertyte PLUS, a premier product designed for use in commercial awning applications. The product features the benefits of the original flagship Weathertyte® fabric, with a softer hand, superior strength, improved weldability and bolder image quality. It offers the high performance of vinyl with the look, feel and texture of a woven …

Products

Flame-resistant stretch

January 1, 2018

Mount Vernon FR’s flame resistant (FR) FlexTex fabrics are engineered with stretch for increased comfort and mobility. The collection now includes six denim and four piece-dyed FR fabrics that include many characteristics of traditional nonstretch denim. FlexTex fabrics are made using an elastomeric fiber that adds mobility to fabric, so workers experience increased range of …

Products

Tough marine zip

December 1, 2017

Sunbrella® Performance Zippers feature tape made using 100 percent Sunbrella fibers, giving them the inherent performance characteristics of all Sunbrella textiles—UV and fade resistance, mold and mildew resistance and bleach cleanability—while the specially-designed WX zipper teeth keep wind and water out. The line also features IDEAL Fastener Corporation’s patented QRX technology for quick release with …

Products

Rugged thread

December 1, 2017

Trivantage has introduced a new line of filament-bonded polyester sewing thread designed for vinyl, canvas and carpet applications. PremoBond features maximum durability, UV protection and colorfastness. With yarn that’s approximately 30 times stronger than the current industry standard, the thread is long-lasting, even in harsh weather conditions. PremoBond’s proprietary bonding blend and custom-formulated dyes ensure …

Products

Upscale upholstery

December 1, 2017

WG Design Studio created two new vinyl-coated textile designs for Wolf-Gordon’s Performance Upholstery 02 collection. Barras is printed with a robust, weathered-linen look. Zig Zag fools the eye with faux stitching—complete with realistic shadows—for a convincing 3-D effect. Both are bleach-cleanable, heavy-duty materials with excellent ratings for abrasion resistance, colorfastness and coating adhesion—the ability for …

Products

Smarter smart apparel

December 1, 2017

DuPont™ Intexar™ smart clothing technology is a suite of premium and high-performing stretchable electronic inks and films that transform ordinary fabrics into smart garments that provide biometric data including heart rate, breathing rate, form awareness and muscle tension. Intexar is seamlessly embedded directly into fabric using standard apparel manufacturing processes to create thin, comfortable, form-fitting …

Projects

Balloon network provides internet

January 1, 2018

For many, internet access is common and logging in is second nature. But more than half of the world’s population is still without access. Google is committed to remedy this and has developed Project Loon, a network of balloons that can provide internet coverage to people in rural and remote locations. It works like this: …

Projects

The tent roof for cars

January 1, 2018

MINI Cooper owners with the spirit of the open road can carry their tent with them and erect it right on top of the car. Designed by AUTOHOME®, an Italian specialist in automobile roof tents, the Air Top™ Roof Tent works with the MINI Countryman and other models. The beauty of the design is that …

Projects

Helmets that detect concussions

January 1, 2018

More and more evidence is coming to light about the devastating effects of concussions and other traumatic brain injuries suffered during contact sports like football. Sometimes an athlete doesn’t even know he or she had a concussion and continues playing, possibly making injuries worse. To help players and coaches determine injuries in real time, mechanical …

Projects

Cooling vest for firefighters

January 1, 2018

Heat exhaustion, cramps and heat stroke are very real dangers to firefighters. Not only are they in a hot environment, but often protective gear traps heat and inhibits the body’s natural ability to cool itself through sweat and moisture evaporation from the skin. Teijin Limited, Tokyo, Japan, has introduced a cooling vest that protects firefighters …

Geosynthetics Members only content

Geofoam solves construction challenges

January 1, 2018

High atop Hidden Peak, lightweight geofoam solves construction challenges the easy way. All projects have challenges, purpose and meaning, yet some projects mean a lot more to owners than others. It takes a visionary to leave a legacy, and Richard Bass, founder of Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort in Utah, fit the bill. Bass is …

Projects

Seismic-reinforced concrete

January 1, 2018

What material could help buildings stand up to earthquakes? Fiber, of course. Researchers at the University of British Columbia have developed concrete reinforced with fiber that can withstand earthquake simulation tests. The material, called eco-friendly ductile cementitious composite (EDCC), is engineered at the molecular level to be strong yet malleable. When applied as a thin …

Projects

Traft: it’s a tent, it’s a raft

January 1, 2018

Outdoor adventurers appreciate keeping things light by traveling only with necessary equipment. Gear that does double duty is particularly useful. That’s where Traft™ comes in. It’s a tent—and it’s a raft. Take it whitewater rafting, then set it up (on land) for a good night’s sleep. Traft is the brainchild of adventurer Evan Glassman, founder …

Projects

Exosuit normalizes walking for stroke patients

December 1, 2017

About 80 percent of people who suffer a stroke lose functionality in a limb—a clinical phenomenon called hemiparesis. Even if those patients return to walking, normal gait can be affected. Researchers at the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering, the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and Boston University’s College of …

Projects

Outerwear that grows with children

December 1, 2017

It’s a common dilemma when buying clothes for young children—do you get the size they are now, knowing they’ll grow out of them soon? Or get a size or two bigger, figuring they’ll grow into them and last longer? That was the inspiration for London-based Petit Pli, a line of children’s clothing created by Ryan …

Projects

Powering fabrics to keep soldiers warm

December 1, 2017

Soldiers stationed in the arctic know that it’s a challenge to stay warm while executing their duties in the frigid weather. Protective clothing is often bulky and makes it difficult to maneuver, and wearers often become overheated and sweaty. A group of scientists at the U.S. Army Natick Soldier Research, Development & Engineering Center is …