Wool and cashmere are tinged with emotion with a method that combines art and technique, craftsmanship and innovation. This is explained by Loredana Giovannini who transforms sweaters and coats into rainbow pictorial canvases

Recovering dyeing and printing techniques that have their roots in the mists of time, rediscovering that tenaciously Italian craftsmanship capable of transforming each creation into a work of art. The essence of the Manual Printing Technique that Loredana Giovannini has been pursuing for over 30 years is all here. Clothing made with noble natural fibers, such as merino wool and cashmere, are converted into canvases on which painting pictures and give shape to visions and emotions. If brushes, rollers and airbrushes become the tools of the imagination, nature and the infinite range of its shades are the main inspiration.

More than a simple processing method, the technique that Loredana and her staff continue to perfect within the Fucina Colore Laboratory of Tintoria Emiliana is a forge of creativity that makes the company laboratory an “arts and crafts” workshop in which even the most technical professionals leave room for their artistic talent. “I firmly believe that the future must start from bringing to light the skills that over the years have been forgotten or have been put in a drawer and which, on the other hand, fully define our Italian spirit in terms of attitude and flair. This does not mean putting technology and innovation to the hatch but, on the contrary, using them to improve our know-how. Leading are the head, heart and hands, because just like painters we let them, moved by our aesthetic as well as emotional sensitivity, to spread the color on the yarns of sweaters, coats, scarves.. “. It is a short step from wardrobe outfits to home interior outfits, but the time is not yet ripe. “Using this technique for fabrics or yarns to be used in furnishing is certainly interesting: something has already been done, but the possibilities for expression are still many”.

As if to say: everything is possible if at the base there are technical skills, manual skills, artistic vision and a desire to experiment.

The premise, however, is the technical skills ..

Knowing the yarns, their characteristics, their strengths as well as their limits is the origin from which starting for a “journey” in the name of the color that leads to enhance them, making them not only unique, but also better for the final result, for softness or pleasant to the touch for example.

From technique we move on to manual skills combined with aesthetics ..

The hand holds the brush, the roller, the airbrush and the sponge and creates paintings that arouse emotions in which color is not an end in itself, but the interpreter of a work that, even if replicated, will never be the same.

Is this the real peculiarity of the Manual Printing Technique?

This is one of the aspects that make it a method of excellence, together with its ability to enhance the yarns on which it is used.

Which yarns offer the best yields?

Natural yarns better if pure: 100% cashmere and 100% wool for example. But even blends such as wool and linen or cotton and linen are “canvases” that give valuable results.

Excellence that is the result of a series of steps that mix craftsmanship and innovation thanks to the use of machinery and tech devices. There are several stages in which this technique is declined. Where does it start from?

From a premise of method: the application of color can be achieved not only by spraying with an airbrush, but also on the table using brushes, rollers or sponges. Having chosen the way to proceed based on the type of garment, the following steps are almost common.

In the case of using the airbrush, what are the steps?

After having put on a hanger the shirt, using sprayers loaded with different colors according to what you want to achieve, you begin to nebulize them, creating different shades depending on the amount of product used. The work obtained is dried at 30 ° C in an oven or with a special ventilation system. Then we proceed to vaporization at 100 ° during which the color is fixed but still remains wet so that it can be eliminated where it is in excess. This step is followed by washing which is carried out several times until the water released from the shirt is transparent.

A process that ends with drying which, if not done correctly, can lead to felting the yarn or swelling it excessively.

That’s right: these two effects depend on the type of yarn being treated as well as on the foresight of this processing phase. We perform a drying with a cradle tambler, a “cuddle” that does not create critical issues but on the contrary generates a final cloud effect.

Every moment of the procedure uses technology but in a very natural way, if only for the fibers it is aimed at. To define it sustainable, however, there is still a way to go.

Our Research division is working in this direction. There are two fields of study: finding vegetable colors that provide a stable finish,  at the moment it is not, and understanding how to make recycled cashmere more tameable to color which, to date, has some difficulty in retaining it.

With a view to the future, are you working on the development of new techniques?

I would rather say that this technique is constantly evolving, either for the yarns where to use it, or for the types of colors or even just the areas in which it can be used.

The future is a canvas for coloring perhaps following the indications of the seasons which are a palette of nuances to look at carefully

Tollegno 1900 knows it well .. it is no coincidence that you have subjected some yarns from the spring 2022 collection to this technique to create very identity garments. Your raw material, whether it be merino wool or cotton, is ideal for experimenting.

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