Discover Why Almost All Denim Is ‘Finished’ and Learn What Each of the Fabric Finishes Does
Fabric finishing is the last stage in the production of denim. It’s where the final touch is added, and it can make a big difference in how the fabric looks, feels and wears.
If you sell denim and jeans, being able to distinguish and explain the benefits of the most important fabric finishes to your customers is not just a nice-to-have. It’s vital information that can make you appear knowledgeable and trustworthy in sales and customer service situations, and it can prevent returns and customer complaints about unsanforized jeans shrink, legs that twist or coatings that wash out with the laundry water.
This final episode of the how denim is made series discusses how the two kinds of fabric finishes impact the way denim looks and behaves. The trick is to use this knowledge to your advance a make it part of the story you tell.
The five production stages of denim that the series discusses:
When I Realised That Most Denim Is ‘Finished’
When I started learning about denim about ten years ago, I didn’t pay much attention to fabric finishes. It was raw denim I wanted to know about, not the washed-down kind! I was obviously confused.
Most raw denim jeans are in fact treated one way or the other. Actually, these days, few jeans are sold as ‘loomstate,’ which is what ‘unfinished’ denim—in other words, untreated denim—is known as. Sure, loomstate denim used to be the only option available, but that was almost a century ago!
Without any finishing, denim looks “hairy” because of all the excess cotton fibres that sit on its surface. The singeing process takes care of the “problem.” What’s much more important is that loomstate denim doesn’t have any dimensional stability. That means it shrinks like crazy.
Even though shrinkage didn’t stop denim jeans from becoming a major hit, denim makers figured they could make the experience of buying and wearing denim jeans more enjoyable by taking some of the guesswork out of it. So they developed fabric finishes.
… to read the rest of the article, you need to buy a subscription.
Already have a subscription? Log in here.
Lost Password? Click here to reset your password.