By: Terri Shadrix
Every year the Industrial Fabrics Association International plans and hosts one of the largest trade shows of its kind. Highlighting the global industrial and outdoor fabrics industry and related businesses, the show boasts 400 exhibitors and thousands of attendees.
The IFAI Expo is being held in Charlotte, NC this year and will again be the place to investigate specialty fabrics, advanced textiles or shade and weather protection outdoor fabrics.
So why does DirecTex attend? The short answer is that it’s just good business. We’re proud participants in these dynamic textile-related industries and with so much going on from so many angles we use the Expo to keep us current and plugged in.
Here’s a short list of what we’re looking forward to this year:
The making of fabrics may be as old as time, but recent advancements in material science and manufacturing processes continue to impress us. We spend a lot of time in the Specialty Fabrics area of the Expo to see what’s going on with traditional market suppliers from fabric, equipment and hardware to services needed to manufacture end products.
And to be fair, we do love the networking opportunities. Many on the DirecTex team have been around industrial fabrics for a long time and we enjoy catching up with colleagues.
We love this area of the show. Innovative suppliers highlight partnerships throughout the supply chain in technical textiles markets including medical, automotive, wearables, safety/protective, performance wear, and aerospace.
From the things we’ll all be wearing the seating surfaces we’ll be sitting on 10 years from now, you’ve got to check this out. Who knows, maybe there’s a new industrial fabric to consider for your product.
SHADE & WEATHER PROTECTION FABRICS
Fabrics for sun protection have been displayed at IFAI Expo for years, but the end use exhibits add a new twist. Started in 2015, this area of the show focuses on end products from retractable awning systems, shade structures and canopies to motorized shade and weather solutions.
Matching the right UV fabrics and mildew resistance with the right mechanical solutions can make a great solution. We look forward to seeing what’s new in the shade and weather area of the show.
FABRIC TESTING PROGRAM
An expanded three-part testing program at Expo this year is offering both classroom training and demonstration. In conjunction with North Carolina State University College of Textiles and others you can see demonstrations by testing experts right on the show floor
Regardless of your role you need to know how your textile product will perform for your customer. Explore this area of the show check out the Introduction to Testing Certificate from NCSU. IFAI and the University have organized the process to earn certification from North Carolina State University through Expo’s expanded Testing Program.
Designed to help you ask the right questions, you will also see demonstrations on:
The Bottom Line: we love the show and think you will too.
Stop by BOOTH #3009 and say hello to the DirecTex team!