wiscbadger

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
Are all 80s two ply cottons the same or are there even different grades of 80s or any thread count for that matter? Is there a way to tell how long the individual fibers are? Thanks guys.

Mike
 

Bog

Super Member
The better shirtings (Italian, Swiss - best mills) are made on looms running from 1000 to 3000 meters daily. And this is what happens: The faster you run the loom, the greater the inherent tension in the yarns of the resulting fabric. On today's super high-speed looms, microscopic breaks in the yarns are caused. These do not become evident until the tension begins to really relax. This happens when the fabric is wet (in the laundry). As the number of launderings increases, those fabrics begin to degrade rapidly. Fabrics woven on the slower looms - in other words those without the high tension breakage - do not begin to degrade anywhere near as rapidly.

This is why I can show you a 2x2 170's shirt made in the mid-1980's and laundered more than 200 times which is perfectly serviceable while a new shirt made of high-speed woven fabric is virtual garbage after 25 washes.

Hence, it is not merely the construction details of the weaving of a particular cloth which influence its appearance, its hand, and its serviceability. There are other factors, two of which I have just briefly touched the surface of, which demand consideration in your selection of that next shirt ... but those are topics for another day. Thanks for slogging through.
Not encouraging words.
 

Alexander Kabbaz

Tech and Business Advice Guru
Not encouraging words.
On the contrary, these words are encouraging if you use them smartly. What I am showing you is simply an education in shirtnomics.

If you buy the $100 shirt of fine European slow-loomed cloth and wear it 100 times, you paid $1 per wearing.

Contrast that with the $50 shirt of inferior fabric which lasts 25 washes. Now you are at $2 per wearing.
 

Bog

Super Member
On the contrary, these words are encouraging if you use them smartly. What I am showing you is simply an education in shirtnomics.
Right. But you do imply that the older a shirt is, the slower the looms ran, hence the better the shirtonomics. Say, a shirt made in 1907 would have better shirtonomics than one made in 2007, no matter what quality of the source material, it would still be made on a loom much faster than that of 1907, to say nothing of one made in 1807.

I am seeing a that the movement towards automatization has resulted in some reduction of longevity of fabric, across the sartorial board. Modern looms are unable to recreate the thick but soft woolens that were formerly available, silk plush is no longer made for top hats, and you seem to have confirmed that modern looms mean shirting of lesser durability even as they may technically be superior on first glance and even have a finer hand etc.
 
Last edited:

radix023

Senior Member
Is there some sort of directory available?

Shopping by web, or even in person, I've never seen a shirt where I could find out:
1) weight (usually in ounces, I'm not sure what the size of cloth they're measuring is. ie 4.5 oz is summer weight suit)
2) 1x1, or 2x1, or 2x2 ply (you see 2-ply but that can mean 2x1 or 2x2. The only place I've see 2x2 listed was on a fine shirting sample (Loro Piana if I remember correctly)).
3) yarn number isn't reported unless it's at least 80 in my experience.
4) yarn count I've not seen on shirts
Now you've added 5:
5) slow loom vs fast loom

It seems if you're going to buy in a completely informed matter you have two paths depending upon your choice:

1) find all these details out about fine shirtings (2,3 are easy, 1, 4, 5 I'm looking for guidance) and then go bespoke
2) find out who the various designers are buying their shirtings from and then get that information from the makers, if possible - this is where a directory of fabricmakers and their offerings with 1-5 above would be handy, but you would still need an index to know who your designer used. (I've seen the fabric maker identified on fine suits, but not on shirts - perhaps an artifact of my limited exposure)


 

Shirtmaven

Inactive user
Are all 80s two ply cottons the same or are there even different grades of 80s or any thread count for that matter? Is there a way to tell how long the individual fibers are? Thanks guys.

Mike
80/2 refers to the yarn size.
the thread count determines how densely the fabric is woven.

the quality of yarn can also vary from egyptian or pima cotton, to cheap indian grown cotton.

even the finishing at the mill will effectthe fabric as well.
so, not all 80/2 is the same.

Carl
 

Alexander Kabbaz

Tech and Business Advice Guru
Right. But you do imply that the older a shirt is, the slower the looms ran, hence the better the shirtonomics. Say, a shirt made in 1907 would have better shirtonomics than one made in 2007, no matter what quality of the source material, it would still be made on a loom much faster than that of 1907, to say nothing of one made in 1807.

I am seeing a that the movement towards automatization has resulted in some reduction of longevity of fabric, across the sartorial board. Modern looms are unable to recreate the thick but soft woolens that were formerly available, silk plush is no longer made for top hats, and you seem to have confirmed that modern looms mean shirting of lesser durability even as they may technically be superior on first glance and even have a finer hand etc.
No, I have not. Modern looms are simply fantastic. It is due solely to the air shuttle, the major advance in modern loom technology, that cloths of counts higher than 120's can be woven.

The problem lies with the bean counters, not the looms. "Run it faster", they say. "Run it slow" replies the more quality-oriented production director, "if you want the best quality".

"Can they tell before it's washed?" inquires the bean counter?

"No", replied the P.D. "It won't be evident until laundering."

"So what's your question?", responds the B.C. "Run it faster!"

The looms are not the problem.
 
Your email address will not be publicly visible. We will only use it to contact you to confirm your post.

IMPORTANT: BEFORE POSTING PLEASE CHECK THE DATE OF THE LAST POST OF THIS THREAD. IF IT'S VERY OLD, PLEASE CONSIDER REGISTERING FIRST, AND STARTING A NEW THREAD ABOUT THIS TOPIC.