Seride prints two million meters of fabric each year. With each roll of fabric having an average width of 1.5 m, this translates into over three million square meters of printed fabric per year. In order to achieve this impressive output, Seride operates a state-of-the-art production facility stocked with the latest digital and gravure printing machines.
“We offer a broad range of different printing techniques and fabric finishing processes,” says Managing Director Bruno Luraschi, who founded the company in 1975. “We also invest continually in the latest production machinery to ensure that we can offer our clients the quality they expect at a competitive price.”
The factory boasts a production area covering 5,000 m² and three warehouses on a plot covering a total area of 12,000 m². The processes offered encompass digital printing, lamination, gravure printing, glitter and devoré processing, coupling and embossing, anti-drip finishes, and anti-fray and non-shrink processes.
Thanks to major investment in recent years, Seride has managed to double production while keeping delivery times unchanged. This has been achieved by increasing the number of digital printing machines in the factory. Modern digital printing technology has quickly become standard in the industry and accounts for 60% of Seride’s printing output while traditional screen printing accounts for 40% of printing orders.
“With digital printing, we can respond very quickly to customer requirements – something that is very important in today’s fast-moving fashion market,” explains Mr. Luraschi. With digital printing, there is no end to the possibilities available. There are no limits to the number of colours or the dimensions of the print ratio, meaning that designers enjoy complete freedom to create new patterns, secure in the knowledge that they can be realised without compromise.
Another advantage of the process is the fact that it is possible to produce in small series at no extra cost. This makes it possible to cater to the needs of customers working with much smaller amounts of fabric. Designers at the couture end of the fashion industry have always embraced new materials and techniques with gusto, and these innovations invariably influence the ranges available in the high street.
“The changes in the fashion industry are also influencing the types of fabric we print.” Improvements in the quality of man-made fabrics and their easy-care characteristics mean that fabrics such as viscose are becoming increasingly popular.
Seride is seeing the proof of this as viscose accounts for the bulk of the fabric processed in its factory, followed by cotton, silk, wool and linen. “Demand for silk fabrics in particular has fallen significantly in recent years in a reflection of changing lifestyles,” says Mr. Luraschi. “Silk is a relatively expensive fabric and rarely found in so-called disposable fashion ranges. Moreover, it has to be washed with care or even drycleaned to maintain its appearance, and this puts a lot of consumers off buying silk garments.”
Although silk remains a firm fixture in the luxury end of the market, there are a number of alternative man-made fabrics with comparable characteristics. The new polyester-based chiffon and crepe fabrics drape and fall much better than their 1970s predecessors while being much easier to care for than natural fibres.
All of the fabrics processed by Seride are printed in response to specific customer orders. “We are given a design or sketch by the customer and asked to create a fabric accordingly,” explains Mr. Luraschi. “We also have our own team of graphic designers to manage patterns and colours, and ensure that the final result meets the customer’s requirements exactly.”
Seride enjoys long-standing relationships with its customers and has developed a strong reputation for both the quality of its fabrics and its service. The company also has an on-site analytical laboratory in which it tests the fabrics for their reaction to external influences. It conducts a series of tests according to European norms that include testing for colour fastness to acid and alkaline perspiration, colour fastness to water and the dimensional stability of the fabric when steamed or pressed.
As well as investing in new production technologies, Seride has also confirmed its environmental credentials through the installation of both a new wastewater processing system and photovoltaic system of electricity generation. Brought on line in 2009, the PV installation produces 200 kW of electricity each year, which can be used directly by the company or fed into the national grid, generating additional income.
The fashion sector is a global market, and 60% of Seride’s production is destined for customers overseas. Its most important markets are Germany, the USA, France and Great Britain. Seride regularly exhibits at the Munich Fabric Start trade show to present new season collections and meet customers. In addition to the garment sector, Seride also supplies shoe makers with fabrics for shoe linings.
Turnover in 2012 amounted to 22 million EUR with a workforce of 95 people. As Seride celebrated its 35th anniversary in 2010, the thoughts of its founder turned not just to the past but also to the future.
“I am fortunate that all three of my children are involved in the family business and am more than confident in their ability to lead the company to continued success in the future,” says Mr. Luraschi. “My son Stefano is currently sales director Italy, while my daughter Frederica is commercial director, and my other son Matteo is technical director. They have grown up with the company, and their expertise and enthusiasm are what will see the company through the next 35 years.”