INVISTA unveils LYCRA® HYBRID technology for high performance knit denim
INVISTA, owners of the LYCRA® brand, will unveil a transformative patent pending technology for knit denim fabrics at the upcoming Kingpins Denim Shows in Amsterdam and New York. Under the platform of LYCRA® HYBRID technology, these fabrics combine the best of both worlds – the comfort and flexibility of a knit with the authentic aesthetics and performance of a woven.
“What distinguishes this technology from existing knit denim is that the LYCRA® HYBRID fabrics integrate a true denim look and feel with low growth, low shrinkage and multi directional stretch,” said Jean Hegedus, INVISTA’s global director for denim. “Additionally, the fabrics can be engineered for use in a range of different garment types, each serving different consumer needs.”
Based on extensive trials with fit models and INVISTA’s proprietary wear force testing protocols, the LYCRA® HYBRID fabrics have been segmented into three different categories, each with unique performance levels -- Level 1 offers everyday denim fabrics that meet INVISTA’s standards can carry the LYCRA® brand; Level 2 are fabrics that meet INVISTA’s shaping technology standards can qualify for the LYCRA® BEAUTY brand; and Level 3 are fabrics that meet INVISTA’s athleisure standards can qualify for LYCRA® SPORT branding.
Introduced in woven denim last year, LYCRA® BEAUTY jeans help shape and sculpt a women’s body comfortably. Now that same concept is being extended into the knit denim arena. INVISTA has once again employed wear force testing and body scanning to quantify the high level of comfort and shaping potential these fabrics can offer.
Previously only used in the activewear segment, the LYCRA® SPORT brand is now being extended into denim for use in athleisure apparel. “We’re very excited about the integration of LYCRA® SPORT fabrics into the denim market space,” Hegedus said. “Our testing helps identify the right level of stretch, recovery, and force to ensure comfort, freedom of movement, and performance in an active inspired garment.”
INVISTA began working on the new technology several years ago as they saw performance fabrics taking an increasingly important role in the denim space. The fabrics employ a specific patent pending construction to achieve the look and feel of traditional denim, but with much greater stretch and flexibility. Another unique function of the technology is that you can engineer the fabric to have the particular level of stretch you desire. “We have been able to achieve fabrics with over 100% stretch in one direction and more than 50% in the other, with less than 5% growth,” said Tianyi Liao, research fellow at INVISTA and inventor of the technology.
INVISTA worked under confidentiality agreement with several mills on this project including Advance Denim of China, Knitdigo of Taiwan, Santanderina of Spain, and Willy Hermann of Austria. Garments from each of these mills will be on display at the Kingpins Shows.
INVISTA will also be hosting a seminar on the technology at the Kingpins shows that will include a panel discussion by representatives of some of the mills, as well as a video featuring students who have personally tried jeans made with the new technology. “We thought it was only appropriate to have the next generation of denim designers and entrepreneurs try out what we believe will be the next generation of denim fabrics,” Hegedus said.
The Kingpins Denim shows are taking place in n Amsterdam on October 28 and 29 (at Westergasfabriek – Gashouder, Klonneplein 1 / 1014 DD) and in New York City on November 3 and 4 (at Pier 36 NYC / Basketball City, 299 South Street). Hours for both shows will be on day one from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. and on day 2 from 10 a.m.- 5 p.m.
The Kingpins Show is an invitation-only, boutique denim sourcing show featuring a highly-edited selection of vendors that include denim and sportswear fabric mills from the U.S., Japan, China, India, Italy, Turkey, Egypt, Pakistan, Thailand, Spain and Mexico, wash houses, full package manufacturers, trim providers and business solutions. Kingpins, which launched in 2004, produces biannual shows in New York, Hong Kong, and Amsterdam.