Sanforizing is a textile finishing treatment, also called Sanfor ® treatment, carried out in the piece in order to increase the dimensional stability of the fabric when washing, or to prevent the fabrics from shrinking during washing.
It is carried out on a special machine which, with a combined mechanical and technical action, includes the fabric in WARP / CHAIN.
The fabric after the sanforizing treatment is said to be sanforized.
The process consists of a series of operations, such as washing, pressing, drying and treatment with chemicals. The Sanfor ® treatment is applied above all in the men’s shirts fabrics and on the precious cotton fabrics, in order to fix them in their dimensions and to avoid their shrinkage during use and washing.
Sanfor ® treatment is named after the inventor of the process Sanford Lockwood Cluett and was patented in 1930.
Sanford Lockwood Cluett (1874-1968) developed the “Sanforizing” process (Sanforizing or Sanfor ® Treatment) in 1928. This type of textile finishing made possible to wash cotton clothes over and over again without any fabric shrinkage.
Now the Sanforized brand (in Italy Sanfor ®) is registered in over 100 countries worldwide.
The Sanforizing treatment (Sanfor ®) and, in general, mechanical compacting, are based on a compaction of the fabric through a combined mechanical and thermal action, carried out on a special machine that forces the fabric to be stretched in the sense of length (meaning warp or ‘chain’), approaching the weft threads.
It follows that the treatment of sanforizing increases the dimensional stability of the fabric only in the sense of the length (‘warp’ or ‘chain’ of the piece), while it is not very influential in the sense of the weft that gets more stability only thanks to the compaction of its threads that limit the approach between them of those of warp.
The treatment was born for the ‘woven’ fabric (also known as ‘orthogonal’ or ‘chain-weave’), for which it still remains today a reference working to obtain reduced shrinkage to washing; the technique of sanforizing over the years has been adapted to knitted fabric with good results on certain fabrics such as brushed cotton sweatshirts, piquet and jersey.
A garment made of a sanforized fabric, when washed, will undergo zero shortening or in any case very limited compared to one made with a fabric that has not been shrank.
Fabrics after the sanforizing process should not give shrinkage above + 1%.