Key variables in the control of color in the textile supply chain

Lina Maria Cárdenas (Department of Textile Engineering, Chemistry, and Science, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina, USA)
Renzo Shamey (Department of Textile Engineering, Chemistry, and Science, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina, USA)
David Hinks (Department of Textile Engineering, Chemistry, and Science, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina, USA)

International Journal of Clothing Science and Technology

ISSN: 0955-6222

Publication date: 2 October 2009

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to address the key variables that determine the level of control of color in a typical textile supply chain, including lighting variability, color perception, and color measurement.

Design/methodology/approach

A fishbone diagram is used to demonstrate the wide range of variables that affect the control and communication of color within the textile supply chain.

Findings

It is important to identify the important parameters and variables that influence the control of color within various stages of the textile supply chain. In regard to visual assessment variability, the results obtained in an ongoing study at North Carolina State University based on the psychophysical testing of 50 observers demonstrate a statistical difference for visual judgments of small color differences between naïve and expert observers. Results of a paired t‐test between the second and the third trial conducted by naïve observers indicate that the repetition of the visual observations significantly affects the assessment of small color differences.

Research limitations/implications

Assessment of lighting measurements of several stores in the USA demonstrate variability in lighting, with many stores having at least two different light sources. This variability, in combination with uncontrolled lighting from external windows and entrance/exit areas, can lead to significant variability in the color perception of textile garments displayed in such areas, and may lead to consumer experience being significantly different from that intended by the designer.

Practical implications

The optimization of variables that influence the assessment and communication of color is vital to achieving effective communication between all parties involved. This can significantly reduce costs and lead times resulting in improved competitiveness and cost efficiency associated with increased consumer satisfaction and confidence in the industry.

Originality/value

The repetition of visual observations significantly affects the assessment of small color differences.

Keywords

Citation

Cárdenas, L., Shamey, R. and Hinks, D. (2009), "Key variables in the control of color in the textile supply chain", International Journal of Clothing Science and Technology, Vol. 21 No. 5, pp. 256-269. https://doi.org/10.1108/09556220910983759

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Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2009, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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