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July 2019 - Two new European standards published.

CEN/TR 17376:2019 Textiles - Safety of children's clothing - Guidance on the use of EN 14682:2014 Cords and drawstrings on children's clothing – Specifications

Written in the form of questions and answers with photos and illustrations, this standard is designed to support EN 14682:2014; it does not replace EN 14682:2014 which is harmonised under the GPSD.  The content responds to common questions referred to the committee members for clarification and mainly reflects the rapid changes in fashion, and the cascade of adult styling to children's clothing.  

A similar document, CEN /TR 16446:2012, was issued to support the earlier version of EN 14682:2007 which was withdrawn on the publication of EN 14682:2014.  

Continuous changes in fashion, and analysis of current fashion for children requires the CEN Technical Committee to ensure these standards remain current and a further revision of EN 14682:2014 is now in progress.

EN 17130:2019 Textiles and textile products – Determination of dimethylfumarate (DMFu), method using gas chromatography.

The standard describes a test method for determining the amounts of dimethyl fumarate (DMFu) in textile materials and textile articles (including desiccant sachets).   It cannot be used for metal parts or components.  

DMFu is restricted according to REACH regulations (see REACH Annex XVII Entry 61). 

July 2019 - New EN Test Method for Security of attachment of buttons

The new draft Standard has been issued by CEN for public comment:  

prEN 17394-2 Textiles and textile products. Part 2: Safety of children's clothing - Security of attachment of buttons - Test method,

The document is available for comment on the web sites of member states' Standards organisations across the EU.  BSI in the UK has BS EN 17394-2 at https://standardsdevelopment.bsigroup.com/categories/61 and comments can be submitted by following the links on that page. Please submit your comments by 26th August 2019. 

The new standard specifies a test method for the security of attachment of buttons; assessments of other garment components are considered in: 

FprCEN/TS 17394-3, Safety of Children's Clothing - Security of Attachment of metal mechanically applied press fasteners - Test method,

and 

FprCEN/TS 17394-4, Safety of Children's clothing – Security of attachment of components except buttons and metal mechanically applied fasteners – Test method.

Performance recommendations are provided in  

FprCEN/TS 17394-1, Textiles and textile products – Safety of children's clothing – Security of attachment of attached components to Infants' clothing – Specification.

These other 3 documents are Technical Specifications as the CEN working group was unhappy with the reproducibility of the test between labs for Part 3 and lack of familiarity with the wash test in Part 4. Work is in hand to progress these TS documents to full EN standards as quickly as possible; this will include further inter-laboratory trails to demonstrate reproducibility. 

CEN/TS documents are not issued for public comment: they are considered by the national committee, in the UK, BSI TCI 66/-/2. If the committee considers them acceptable, they are published. Since all 4 documents are based on TR 16792, which in turn is an updated version of BS 7907, publication in UK is highly likely.  

May 2019 - SDC Elects President 2019-2020

At their AGM held on Friday 10th May at the historic Merchant Adventurers' Hall in York, the Society of Dyers and Colourists elected Sue Bolton to be SDC President 2019 - 2020.     Sue will represent the Society at a wide range of events over the coming year, including ITMA in Barcelona 20th to 26th June 2019.

After the AGM, the SDC held their annual Day of Celebration with an awards ceremony recognising individuals for their contribution to the profession, the industry and to the Society.   In the evening after the SDC annual dinner the finalists in the UK Heats of the SDC' International Colour Design Competition were recognised and the winner Sarah Gotheridge from Nottingham College announced.

Maintaining a long tradition, Kerry M. King, President of the AATCC, presented a commemorative plaque recognising the President of the SDC as an Honorary Member in the American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists May 2019 - April 2020.

Sue commented: "my Presidential mission is to promote the benefits of SDC membership, education and qualifications, particularly Chartered Colourist. This will promulgate better use of best available technology by the coloration industry, leading to reduced environmental impact".

November 2018 - The 12th China Forum on Textile and Apparel Standard and Quality Management

Sue was an invited speaker at the 12th CNTAC Forum on safety and quality management in Suzhou, China held 15th & 16th November 2018.

CNTAC, the China National Textile and Apparel Council, is the national Federation of textile-related industries in China.   The conference drew more than 300 attendees from across China. The event opened with awards for quality improvement being made to around 50 Chinese textile companies.

The conference continued with presentations on a range of topics, including a review of compliance with national mandatory standards for textiles with presentations by CNTAC and local authorities' representatives.   Sue's presentation explained the background to 'EN 14682:2014 Safety of Children's Clothing - Cords and Drawstrings on Children's Clothing - Specifications' and "CEN/TR 16792:2014 Safety of children’s clothing – recommendations for the design and manufacture of children’s clothing – mechanical safety", the requirements of these standards and how they fit with EU legislation, and compared these requirements to "GB 31701-2015 Safety Technical Code for Infants and Children Textile Products" and "T/CNTAC 1-2018 Guidance on Implementation of GB 31701, the safety technical code for infants and children textile products".

The day of formal presentations was followed by a less formal discussion on testing and interpretation of results, and concluded with a visit to Aimer's factory near Suzhou. Aimer is one of the leading lingerie brands in China www.aimeronline.com.

August 2018 - Three New European Standards Concerning Safe Bedding For Infants Published

New European Standards for children's sleep bags, cot bumpers and duvets for children, have been published in August 2018 and will be issued in the UK as British standards: BS EN 16781:2018,   BS EN 16780:2018,   and BS EN 16779-1:2018.

The three standards were written by a joint working group (CEN/TC248/WG34), convened under the CEN committees TC248 Textiles and CEN TC252 Child Care Articles, in response to European Commission Mandate No M/497, "Standardisation mandate to CEN, CENELEC and ETSI on the safety of child-care articles; Cluster 2 - risks in the sleeping environment; Mattresses for cots, cot bumpers, suspended beds for children, duvets for children, sleep bags for children". The two remaining products (italicised above) are being covered by other work groups.

The standards have been developed to be harmonised under the General Product Safety Directive (enacted in UK as General Product Safety Regulation) so products in compliance with these standards will be presumed to be safe.

These safety specifications are new for most countries, and the provision of labelling, warnings and instructions for use in the local language forms part of the safety of the product. This aspect is expected to be strongly enforced by Market Surveillance Officers (Trading standards in the UK).

All three standards have an 18 month transition period commencing 1 August 2018 to allow existing stock to be sold through.

EN16781:2018 Textile child care articles. Safety requirements and test methods for children's sleep bags.

It is expected that "BS8510:2009 Child use and care articles ‒ Safety of children's sleep bags ‒ Safety requirements and test methods" will be withdrawn. Sleep bags made in compliance with EN16781 will be accepted as safe products throughout the UK and Europe.

The standard provides design limitations to make the sleep bag inherently safe for example:

Other requirements include;

EN 16780:2018 Textile child care articles. Safety requirements and test methods for children's cot bumpers

EN 16780:2018. Textile child care articles. Safety requirements and test methods for children's cot bumpers This will replace certain parts of "BS1877-10:2011+A1:2012 Domestic bedding. Specification for mattresses and bumpers for children's cots, perambulators and similar domestic articles", relating to cot bumpers.

Like EN16781, this has been drafted in response to an EU Commission Mandate, and when harmonised will have similar status.

Many requirements are based on BS1877-10, with enhancements similar to those used for infants clothing, so they are known to be achievable in production. The emphasis has been on inherent safe design so for example;

Specific marking, warnings and instructions for use have been provided in the standard.

IMPORTANT: Cot bumper have been a major discussion topic by professional infant health providers world-wide, and in certain US states have been prohibited.

EN 16779-1:2018. Textile child care articles. Safety requirements and test methods for children's cot duvets. Part 1. Duvet (excluding duvet covers)

This standard considers all duvets, and quilts or comforters with a non-removable cover. The removable cot duvet covers will be specified in Part 2 of the standard which is under development.

There is no existing standard for cot duvet; however, for several years UK health professionals have recommended that cot duvets are not suitable for infants under 12 months.

EN16799-1 is applicable to duvets up to 120 cm x 140cm. Larger duvets are not in scope; however, many aspects of the standard represent good practice for product construction and manufacture.

EN 16799-1 provides safety requirements for the design, materials and construction for the cot duvet to deliver inherent safety by design and manufacture. These include

The standard also provides requirements for Specific marking (labelling) to provide as well as specific warnings and instructions for use.

IMPORTANT France has national legislation concerning flammability performance of duvets which is applicable in that country.

Copies of these standards can be obtained from BSI or your local national standards organisation. Please contact info@boltonconsultancy.co.uk  for further information.

May 2018 - Labelling Seminar in Belgium

Sue delivered a seminar covering the Essentials of Labelling for clothing, home textiles and footwear to 29 IVOC/CREAMODA members on 17th May.   The seminar included labelling compliance with the GPSD, Textile labelling regulation, Biocidal products, footwear, labelling care symbols, UK and Irish nightwear flammability legislation; together with discussion of best practice for products for the whole european market.

November 2017 - CEN TC248 WG20 Meeting at the SDC in Bradford

The annual meeting of CEN TC 248, European standards technical committee for textile and textile products was held at SDC’s offices in Bradford West Yorkshire in November; with support from SDC Enterprises, BTTG, NCWA, UKFT, SGS, Intertek, Holdstock Technical Services, TSA and organised by Bolton Consultancy Limited.

Four working groups met during the week, including WG 20 Safety of children’s clothing, which is convened by Sue and was attended by 16 experts from Belgium, France, Italy, Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, Turkey and UK (pictured).

October 2017 - ISO TC38 Meeting New Orleans

The ASTM and AATCC hosted ISO TC 38 in the USA in October 2017 which met in New Orleans.

Sue chaired ISO TC 38 Textiles SC1 tests for colourants and coloured textiles (colour fastness) which was attended by 52 experts from 9 countries.   She also attended ISO TC 38 plenary and ISO TC 38 SC2 care labelling, cleansing and water resistance tests as UK expert.

September 2017 - International China Legislation Conference 2017 Barcelona

An international conference for delegates invited from across the industry in the EU was held in Barcelona, Spain, to share and promote understanding of Legislation and Standards for the safety of children’s clothing and related products in China and in the EU. The conference assembled a panel of representatives from the standardisation bodies of both China and the EU including Mr Sun Ximin from CNTAC and Mrs Ingrid Soetaert from CEN together with the experts responsible for drafting the respective standards:

Delegates were invited to address detailed questions and requests for clarification to the panel which considered the questions in detail and reported back the following day.