Colour migration problem of Barbie dolls

Pao Yue-kong Library Electronic Theses Database

Colour migration problem of Barbie dolls


Author: She, Hok-ming
Title: Colour migration problem of Barbie dolls
Year: 2001
Subject: Barbie dolls
Dyes and dyeing -- Acrylic fibers
Polyethylene terephthalate
Polyvinyl chloride
Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Department: Multi-disciplinary Studies
Institute of Textiles and Clothing
Pages: x, 112 leaves : ill. ; 30 cm
Language: English
InnoPac Record:
Abstract: Mattel Incorporation is the leading toys company listed in US, the famous brand Barbie dolls accounted for more than 40% the company's profit in past several years. Since the legs of Barbie are needed to be bent into different gesture by the customers, they are usually made of a flexible and elastic material, poly(vinyl chloride) PVC. However, when the Barbie dolls wearing poly(ethylene terephthalate) PET dresses are subject to the elevated temperature for a long time during transportation and storage, the PVC legs are always suffered from the 'colour migration' problem that the PVC legs are stained with the fabric colour, which in turn deteriorate the dolls' outlook and cause customers' complaints. This long-standing problem creates many restrictions on toy design and causes big money loss in production and sales. In this article, the colour migration problem between disperse-dyed PET fabrics and PVC plates was investigated in depth. There were firstly an introduction of PET production, the dyeing mechanism of PET by disperse dyes, the use of polyester in Barbie , as well as a literature review on the thermo-migration behaviour of disperse-dyed PET. Then, the study was further extended, a series of tests were carried out using different disperse-dyed fabrics to investigate the colour migration phenomenon to PVC under the effects of (1) elevated temperature and (2) acrylic coating. The test results showed that both elevated temperature and acrylic coating on disperse-dyed PET fabrics had significant effects on the colour migration problem, the PVC plates were found to be stained with the fabric colours, as it would be discussed in depth in this article. Throughout this study, a designer/engineer will have more understanding on the properties of disperse-dyed PET fabrics and colour migration problem. Whenever they design new dresses for Barbie , they can take precautions in advance to avoid such problem to happen. As a result, many production, quality and aesthetic problems of Barbie can be avoided.

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