3 Common Types of Knit Fabrics

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Knit Fabrics Types

People who are new to the world of sewing might initially feel a bit scared of sewing knits. However, there is no need to be afraid of sewing knits, because knits are pretty much easy to sew and fit. Nevertheless, it is true that you will need a little bit of practice to master it.

If you are a person who is planning to start sewing knits, then it is best to dedicate a quality amount of your time to learn about the wide varieties of knit fabrics available in the market. This will help you to easily identify the right type of knit fabric that is the ideal choice for your project. Some of the most popular and widely used types of knit fabrics are as follows.

Jersey

Jersey is the most common type of knit fabric and most of the basic T-shirts available in the market are usually made from Jersey. Some of the major characteristics of Jersey fabric are discussed below.

  • The stretch factor is relatively less when compared to other fabrics.
  • They do not recover well once they are stretched too far.
  • Right and wrong sides of this type of fabric are actually different. You can see vertical knit rib on the right side and horizontal purls on the other side.

Rib Knit

Rib knit fabric is actually created with two needles that come with vertical textured lines. This is the ideal type of knit fabric for making wristbands, bubble hems, collars, and neckbands. Some of the most prominent features of rib knit are as follows.

  • Rib knit fabric usually has a number of crosswise stretches.
  • They possess the ability to recover well when they are stretched.
  • The right and wrong sides of this fabric are identical yet different.

Interlock

Interlock knit fabric is actually a variation of rib knit fabric and it is also made by using two needles. This type of knit fabric works exceptionally well with camisoles, tanks, skirts, and T-shirts. Some of the most popular characteristics of interlock fabric are listed below.

  • It is far thicker and stable than jersey fabric.
  • The edges of this type of fabric do not curl usually, which means that they are easier to work with for beginners.
  • It is difficult to distinguish between the right and wrong side of interlock fabric.

These are the most common types of knits, so understanding how to distinguish them would help you gain more confidence while sewing knit fabrics.

How a Cotton T-Shirt is Made

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T-Shirt Production Stages

Usually, 100 percent cotton is used to make cotton T-shirts, although some manufacturers use polyester or a blend of polyester along with cotton for the same. In fact, the use of any of the fabrics varies as per the choice of raw material of the designers and the budget of sourcing. Elastic knit fabrics are affordable and ideal for screen printing and heat transfer applications to make T-shirts. Below is a rundown of the many processes that go into the making of a cotton T-shirt.

Raw Material Sourcing

After the cotton ball is sourced from the crop fields, they are placed into a gin wherein the cotton gets filtered mechanically from the seeds as well as the chaff. Known as ginning, this is a phase that filters the cotton balls and other materials from raw cotton in order to make cotton fabrics. In fact, cotton gins nowadays are capital intensive using multi-powered cleaning cylinders as well as saws.

From the Spinner to the Loom

Cotton fiber bundles are spun in knitting mills once the material is carded, combed, and blended. In fact, prior to the carding phase, which comprises of filtering the fiber material into loose strands of cotton, the material gets removed from a cotton picking machine. Then in the weaving phase, the spun cotton is knit on the loom into a coarse and grayish looking fabric.

The Wet Processing

Wet processing is where the fabric is treated with heat as well as a chemical that imparts it the softness and color. It is usually segregated into 3 stages –preparation, coloring, and applying the finish. The phase also comprises of bleaching, printing, and dyeing, as well as checking the cotton fabric for grey residues.

Cut and Sew and Transformation

Oftentimes, the fabric gets its shape and appearance from a sewing unit. Up to 15 percent of the fabric reaches the facility where the sewers make the cotton garments from the finished fabric. Then, to make the T-shirt appealing, screen printing is done following finalization of the specs regarding the pattern. The color pantone, placement, ink-type, and sizing are also finalized in the screen printing phase.

Each of the color in the artwork is filtered and then printed onto a clear film named ‘film positive’. The films are then used to exert the print onto the mesh screen having a photo-sensitive emulsion – each of the screens is then exposed to an Ultra Violet light table having vacuum sealing. The screens get rinsed, the photos inspected for the accuracy, and then they get put on a screen-press which prints the design and pattern on the T-shirts.

3 Basic Fabric Printing Methods Used in Textile Industries

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Fabric Printing Techniques

Fabric printing refers to the process of applying colors, patterns, and designs to a finished piece of fabric. This printing is different from conventional printing methods as the dye and color is attached to the cloth fibers. This will fasten the ink into the clothing that prevents them from getting removed during washing or due to friction.

Textile printing is a process used right from the ancient times. In fact, some of the ancient methods of fabric printing are still being used in textiles. Nevertheless, there are different printing methods used for textile printing. Each of these methods varies depending on the application techniques and quality of the print. These methods are responsible for the thousands of complex patterns and impressive colors seen in textiles today.

Nowadays, the printing technology has progressed greatly, as current fabric printing relies on computers and advanced printing machines that can deliver patterns and colors into the fabric with astounding accuracy. Below are three basic fabric printing methods used in textile industries.

Block Printing

Block printing is one of the oldest techniques used for fabric printing. This type of printing uses a wooden block where the design is engraved. It is then transferred on to the fabric by dipping it in ink and pressing it onto the fabric surface. This process is repeated for covering the selected regions of the textile. Mostly done manually, it is one of the simplest forms of fabric printing techniques used today.

Roller Printing

Roller printing is similar to block printing, but this method uses a large copper cylinder engraved with the design needed to print on the fabric instead of a wooden block. The textile is then fed into these rollers where it is pressed against the cylinder surface, which will imprint the designs on the fabric. Roller printing can produce repeated prints quickly, and thus, it is used for high-speed fabric printing.

Screen Printing

Screen printing is one of the most commonly used methods for printing designs or patterns onto any fabric. It is a highly versatile method of fabric printing and uses flat or cylindrical screens made from materials like silk, nylon, polyester, etc. The screen has several unblocked areas in it corresponding to the design. Once the printing ink is applied on the screen, it is pressed either manually or automatically to the textile. This forces the ink through the unblocked areas to get imprinted on the fabric surface.

What are the Benefits of Cotton Clothing

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Cotton Clothing Benefits

Statistics show that cotton is the most used natural fiber across the world, which is mainly used to make clothes. Other parts of the plant are used to produce food, paper, and plastic products as per the guidelines set by the National Cotton Council of America. As cotton is a natural product, it has many advantages like the ability to insulate, control moisture, and resist water. Besides, cotton fabric is also comfortable, durable, and hypoallergenic. Some of the main advantages of cotton fabric are discussed below.

Insulation

Cotton is a natural fiber and it offers good protection against heat and cold by offering thermal insulation. The fabric can trap air between the fibers allowing your skin to breathe. The fibers in cotton can hold the fabric away from your skin allowing for more air circulation between the fabric and the skin, which can help with comfort and insulation.

Moisture Control

Cotton fabric is very much breathable and can transmit the moisture away from the body of the user. The fiber is also absorbent so it can easily remove sweat from the surface of the skin, like a towel absorbing the liquid. Additionally, cotton fabric can help you to remain comfortable while working out as it can keep moisture from building up between the clothing and your skin.

Weatherproof

Cotton fibers can be used to make weather resistant garments via finishing of the fabric. For instance, cotton can be made into a dense, tight fabric that has a weatherproof finish, yet retaining the breathability and comfort of the fabric.

Hypoallergenic

Cotton fabric does not lead to much allergic reactions and it is even recommended for people with skin allergies. As cotton is hypoallergenic, it is used in products like gauze and bandages. It is also the fabric of choice when it comes to baby clothing.

Comfort and Durability

Cotton fabric is very soft and stretches easily making it a very much comfortable clothing choice. Due to the comfort and softness of the fabric, it is widely used in the manufacture of undershirts and underwear. In addition, the cotton fabric will not cling, as it cannot hold an electric charge.

Cotton fiber has very high tensile strength, which makes it very much durable, meaning that cotton clothes are less likely to tear or rip. In fact, the fiber is thirty percent stronger when wet and can withstand numerous washings and laundries.