Image courtesy Heat Transfer Warehouse

Term of the Week: Flock

Each week Printwear turns to industry experts to learn more about the terms used in the apparel and apparel decoration industry, as well as the business realm. Contact Printwear's digital content editor, Alexandria Arroyo, if you're interested in the opportunity to be featured. 

Flock is a soft, velvet-like heat transfer vinyl that is thicker than your standard vinyl, making it the perfect alternative to embroidery. It gives your design a raised look as well as a textured feel. The soft touch makes it a great product to use for children or baby garments too. It comes in a variety of standard and bright colors, making it another popular choice if you are trying to achieve a retro design.

Source: Brooke Hestdalen

Flock starts as long braids of super-fine, spun fibers of the natural substance rayon. These strands have the appearance of beautiful silvery or golden hair. They are wound through a series of guides where they literally end up on the chopping block and are cut to various lengths ranging from around a quarter inch to a few microns. These tiny fibers go through numerous steps. First, they are washed to remove any impurities. Next, they are dyed to a wide range of colors. Afterwards, they are treated to give specific electrostatic properties and then dried, packaged, and shipped for application.

Source: David Lewis