Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Look Around You - Paper Bags!

Did you know that the decorated paper bags are made from the waste of other types of printing?

The way it works is the pattern that is going to be printed onto the material is put onto paper, but as a mirror image. The paper is laid onto the item to be printed, and ironed (I think): the dye transfers onto the material, leaving a beautifully printed piece of material, and a roll of paper with a faded, but usually quite pretty pattern on it.

These rolls of paper are cut up and turned into paper bags, and used for ... well whatever comes in pretty paper bags. The purchaser never knows that it is actually wrapped in what could otherwise be rubbish.

I am told (I've never done it) that you can open up paper bags and then iron the remains of the dye onto material, printing your own version of the pattern.

I was reminded of this today. Rarely is the origin of the paper bag quite so bltant:
plain paper bag with reverse writing

For those interested, the website can be found here. They operate an industrial laundry service. I was a bit disappointed, expecting it to be lavender related.

I tried - and failed - to find a website explaining the details of the paper bag manufacturing process. I did find that there are people who collect airline sick bags. Not only that, but if this hobby appeals to you, he is willing to send you a sick bag starter pack to start off your collection.

3 comments:

Karol-Ann said...

Enjoyed this obscure fact - very interesting. Had heard about the sick bags, but I'd rather collect fabric!

rosamundi said...

butbutbutbutbut laundry is lavender-related!

Both from the same Latin round "lavere," meaning "to wash" and it's because the Romans used lavender when washing themselves and their clothes.

Dye Products said...

Thanks for such a wonderful information about the laundry dyeing process..

http://www.dye-products.com/