The world is shifting to digital, and wallpaper is no exception. Traditionally printed through rotary screen, flexographic, and gravure methods, digital printing is starting to gain a serious foothold in the wallpaper and wallcoverings market. This transition is caused by a strong demand for customization and the increased popularity of just-in-time manufacturing and low levels of inventory.
The biggest advantage of digital printing in the wallpaper market is that it enables printers to create unique, high resolution designs in short runs, or even one-offs. Gone are the days when wallpaper was relegated to repetitive designs every few inches. Printers are now able to specialize in producing murals and personalized designs, which are increasingly becoming more popular. Thanks to digital technology, printers are now able to produce outstanding photorealistic wallcoverings with unprecedented color gamut. The design possibilities with digital printing are endless.
Digital printing also offers the advantage over traditionally printed wallpaper in that traditional wallpaper requires large runs, which leaves the customers with large amounts of inventory. They are not always able to accurately predict which products will sell, so sometimes they are left with inventory they are unable to move, which can come at a burdensome cost. While traditional methods are more cost effective at large runs than digital printing, companies looking to move to just-in-time manufacturing or not wanting to sit on copious levels of inventory may find digital printing a more attractive option to decrease waste and save money.
What’s just as important as how the wallpaper is produced is how it is protected. Polymeric’s FORTIFI SmokeScreen+ coating is designed for wallpapers, particularly those printed with eco solvents, solvents, screen ink, digital UV inks, and HP latex inks. In addition to providing flame resistance when printed on flame resistant materials, SmokeScreen+ offers chemical resistance to solvents, paints, markers, cleaners, gas, sauces, red wine, mustard, acids and molds. SmokeScreen+ is ideal for use on litho, flexo, screen, and digitally printed graphics – perfect for both traditional and modern wallcoverings. SilvaKure can also be added to SmokeScreen+ for additional anti-microbial protection against common dangerous pathogens.