Nylon fabric is made of most abrasion-resistant and strong fiber compared to those fabrics made of polyester. It has a minimal rate of absorbing moisture, and if treated right, it features quick-drying and wicking properties. Its fibers are long-lasting and smooth, which makes this material more durable than the polyester fabric. However, the nylon fabric doesn’t absorb dye well, so it may not attain a saturated color for digital printing. It has higher elastic recovery; hence it can stretch up to its limits without destroying its shape. The nylon fabric is also sunlight-resistant, which makes it a perfect selection for your activewear.
4 Ways of stretching nylon fabric
The nylon fabric is designed to stretch and get back to its old shape, although it could be a permanent or temporal stretch on the material. By relaxing the nylon fabric through repeated soaking in baby shampoo, stretching using weights or wearing will cause the structure to expand. With all this done, you will be able to pull the fabric to the desired size and wear it comfortably. There are four ways in which you can stretch your nylon material.
1. You can wear the nylon to stretch it
Let’s see step by step on to which you can extend the fabric permanently or temporarily using the wearing method.
Step a: First, the nylon fabric should be soaked in490to 600 C water for about 30 minutes. The hot water helps in relaxing the nylon fibers. Moreover, most of the washing machine water heaters are usually set on maximum temperatures, so you can also decide to wash the fabric in a washing machine or soak in the sink with the hottest water from the tap.
Step b: You should put on the fabric while still wet but may feel uncomfortable. Although the garment is a little tight or clingy, you have to work on the clothing a little. The moisture and heat will assist in stretching the garment as you wear it.
Step c: before the garment dries, you should remain active all through as the fabric air-dries on your body; it will also stretch around you. You should also stay on the move as much as you can to force the nylon fabric to pull more. Making different moves will ensure the fabric stretches in different directions. For instance, you can try some exercises like jumping jacks and squats, jogging in place, or even bending at the waist. The time it takes for your garment to dry will depend on its thickness.
2. Use of weights to stretch the fabric
Before you stretch the nylon fabric using weights, you should first soak it in hot water of 490to 600 C. Run it through the hot cycle using the washing machine to relax the fibers. You can also heat your water using a pot with a stove and soak it to allow it to stretch comfortably. Again, most of these water heaters are usually set for heating the water within that range.
Secondly, while the fabric is still hot, ensure you place it on a flat surface such as a table, the floor, ironing board, or kitchen counter. Also, it should be a surface that cannot be damaged by hot water. If you are not sure if the surface can sustain hot water, you can place a drop of hot water first on any part of the area, and if that spot changes its color, then it won’t be suitable.
Now, you can either use a bed’s leg, a stack of textbooks, or free weights to hold down the fabric while you stretch it. After pulling it, you can weight load to secure the other end to ensure it doesn’t go back to its original shape.
3. Soak the fabric in baby shampoo
Fill a little warmer water with 290 to 320 C in a bathtub, sink or basin and then a mild conditioner or baby shampoo into the water. The shampoo should be roughly about 15ml, which is approximately one tablespoon. Once you have stirred the shampoo in the water, the water will take a soapy and slick consistency. This will help in relaxing the fibers making the nylon fabric to stretch easily. You can now fully immerse the fabric into the water and soak it for around 30 minutes for the soap to penetrate through the material. After the waiting period is over, you can squeeze the nylon fabric to wring out the moisture, but you shouldn’t rinse the cloth because the soap will continue relaxing the fibers as you stretch the fabric.
Finally, you can now stretch the fabric and use weights to hold it in place. Due to the baby shampoo used, the material will easily stretch beyond its normal limits. Ensure you place objects which can’t be damaged by the moisture on both ends. However, varnished or painted materials may not be suitable for the work because it will leave stains on your fabric. The fabric should remain held by the weights until it dries up because if you take off the loads before it dries, the fabric starts returning to the original shape.
4. Taking care of the fabric after stretching it
Once the material has been extended, it should be kept away from heat because the fibers will start retracting back to their standard size. The elastane fibers can also be broken by high temperatures causing the fabric to break down. When the garment dries, you will use room temperature water on it anytime you are washing. You can also add one tablespoon of mild detergent to wash the dirt off.
After washing it, you should air-dry it for about two to three hours to allow the material fibers. Hang it with clothespins on the clothesline to dry. Whenever the nylon fabric gets dirty, you should always wash it with room temperature water in the washing machine, but you can also remove it with your hands. Swirl it in the soapy water for around two to three minutes using your hands.