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The importance of strike-offs in fashion print design

Updated: May 15

The importance of strike-offs in fashion print design

If you are planning to print artwork onto your products, then you will need to order samples.

In the world of fashion print design, printed fabric samples are called strike-offs. This is a pivotal stage in the design process that should not be overlooked. In this blog post, we'll cover the significance of strike-offs, exploring why this step is crucial for bringing your textile designs to life.

First, what is a strike-off?

A strike-off is a sample of a textile or print design produced during the pre-production phase. It serves as a tangible representation of a designer's vision, providing a preview of how the final design will look on the chosen fabric. This important step allows designers to assess colour accuracy, pattern scale, and overall quality before mass production begins.

Importance of strike-offs in fashion design:

  1. Colour Accuracy Assurance: Strike-offs enable designers to validate the colour accuracy of their prints on the chosen fabric. This step is vital because colours can appear differently on fabric compared to digital or paper representations. By reviewing a strike-off, designers can ensure that the hues align with their original vision, maintaining brand consistency.

  2. Quality Control: Examining a strike-off allows designers to assess the quality of the print, ensuring that the chosen fabric complements the design and that the print application meets their standards. This process helps identify any potential issues or adjustments needed before moving forward with mass production, preventing costly mistakes.

  3. Pattern Scale Evaluation: Strike-offs provide an opportunity to evaluate the scale of the pattern on the fabric. Designers can check whether the size and proportion of the print align with the intended aesthetic. This step is crucial, especially for intricate or detailed designs, ensuring that the pattern translates seamlessly onto the fabric.

  4. Client Approval and Collaboration: For fashion designers working with clients or collaborating with other stakeholders, strike-offs offer a tangible representation for approval. This hands-on approach fosters communication and collaboration, allowing for adjustments based on client feedback before moving forward with production.

  5. Cost-Effective Adjustments: Identifying and addressing any issues during the strike-off stage is more cost-effective than making corrections after mass production has begun. It helps avoid the need for extensive reprints or fabric changes, ultimately saving both time and resources.

How do I order a strike-off?

Ordering a strike-off for a printed textile design is a straightforward process. Here's a simple step-by-step guide:

  1. Contact a Textile Printing Service: Begin by reaching out to a textile printing service or a professional textile printer. You can find these services online or through local printing companies. Make sure they specialise in textile printing and offer strike-off services.

  2. Provide Design Details: Clearly communicate your design details to the printing service. This includes sharing the digital file of your textile design, specifying the desired dimensions, and indicating any particular colour preferences or requirements. When I work with my clients, I always provide an artwork spec sheet. You can download a free template here!

  3. Discuss Fabric Options: Talk to the printing service about the available fabric options. Different fabrics can affect how the design looks and feels. Choose a fabric that aligns with your vision for the final product. Common textile options include cotton, linen, silk, and polyester.

  4. Confirm Quantity and Size: Specify the quantity of strike-offs you need and the size of each sample. This is essential for both cost estimation and ensuring you have enough samples to assess the design effectively.

  5. Review and Approve Quote: Once you've provided all the necessary details, the printing service will offer you a quote for the strike-off production. Review the quote, making sure it aligns with your budget and requirements. Upon approval, the printing process will proceed.

  6. Receive and Evaluate the Strike-Off: After production, the printing service will send you the strike-off samples. This is a small batch of fabric with your printed design. Take the time to carefully evaluate the strike-off, paying attention to colour accuracy, pattern scale, and overall quality.

  7. Provide Feedback (if necessary): If there are any adjustments or modifications needed, provide constructive feedback to the printing service. This could include requesting changes to colours, scale, or other aspects of the design.

  8. Finalize the Order: Once you are satisfied with the strike-off and any necessary adjustments have been made, finalize the order for the full production of your printed textile design.

Remember, clear communication and collaboration with the textile printing service are key throughout the process. By following these steps, you'll be on your way to receiving a high-quality strike-off and moving forward with confidence in your textile design project.


In the fashion design industry, strike-offs serve as an indispensable tool for designers to test, sample and visualise their textile designs in real life. This important step ensures that the final product aligns with the initial creative concept and specifications, which allows for successful and visually stunning fashion collections.

Are you ready to order a strike-off and need assistance with either preparing the artwork for print or communicating with your chosen supplier? I can help. With industry experience working in-house for well-known Australian fashion labels, I am here to offer advice and guide you through the development of your fashion collection.

Feel free to get in contact here, or email me at




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