I had an interesting email from a reader about something I hadn’t considered before, and I’m guessing that you might not have either. But now that it has been brought to our notice, it would be foolish to not keep an eye it. So what is it? Well, why don’t I just let this excerpt from his email explain . . .

“While I got depressed about glitter/microplastics in our seafood, it made me think about an episode of “The Future of Fashion” on Netflix and the impact of 3D printed clothing and how this will affect textiles and textile printing in the not too far off future. The tech is already here with unbelievable developments in material sciences to support a variety of creations. Anyway, I think 3D printing/additive manufacturing is going to be a household solution to nearly everything we need in a couple of decades—with a printer in every home. Maybe ink and textile manufacturers should be thinking about ‘material’ development for this technology to avoid extinction.

It would be ideal, because there is massively reduced waste and if the printed material is biodegradable then all the better. We”ll just compost our old clothes and shoes (shredder to garden)”

This is something to think about and definitely not far-fetched, particularly for those of us old enough to remember how a coloured ink-jet printer on every desk disrupted the printing industry by ushering in desktop publishing. And if you need another example of industry disruption, just consider what a digital camera in every phone did to the photographic industry generally and the one-hour photo-development industry specifically.