As many of you know, those shirts or trousers you pull our everyday wardrobe originally have roots from working, military or athletic clothing. Once a purely utilitarian and practical decision, our clothes turn into the very thing that embodies rich history into something we can wear. The same can be said when it comes to jeans, work shoes, hunting and military jackets and sporty knitted clothing. All of these clothing have been adapted to the everyday urban style, so let’s sit down for a short history lesson and appreciate what time has given us.
In the early to mid-twentieth century, basketball and baseball training required comfortable clothing that simultaneously absorbed sweat during training while being flexible. For all this, cotton knitwear suited perfectly. Such cloth was knitted on special circular knitting machines with a capacity of just 1 meter of cloth per 1 hour of work. “Training shirts” had a round neck with a V-shaped detail in front, which allowed avoidance unnecessary stretching, as well as a knitted belt and cuffs- very practical and convenient. Very soon this jersey got blasted out of the ball park by fashion and was then since worn daily. Over time, even movie stars of those times began to wear the sweater, thereby popularizing such clothes among the masses.
The popularization of knitwear prompted a huge demand for sweaters. Knitted sweatshirts were produced by a variety of companies in very large quantities. It is difficult nowadays to find a brand of men’s clothing that does not have a collection of this practical knitted sweatshirt. However, quantity inevitably trumps quality, causing sturdy, well-made pieces to appear less and less in the over-saturated market of knitwear.
Production, details, features
To this day, Japanese masters are those who mainly remained to the greatest expectations of high quality and classical production of knitted things. In Japan, at the end of the 19th century, the production of knitwear was developed. Later, the same Tsuri Ami jersey was produced on Loopwheeler machines. In the present, the production of such equipment has been discontinued and factories are using really old equipment.
To put it down in history books, this below is what and how a TRUE traditional Sweater is made according to all the old rules and what details it should have.
This machine has only one yarn feeder and the rotor makes only 24 turns per minute, giving out one meter of knitted cloth per hour. The machine produces a kind of knitted cylinder without seams. However, it is worth noting that seamlessness here is not an end in itself. Traditional production on the Loopwheeler is characterized by a weakened thread that does not experience tension, which results in a very soft, comfortable and at the same time very strong and elastic web. It is in this thread that the Japanese name of weaving technology, Tsuri Ami, gives a name- implying a loose, weakened, but sturdy thread.
There are modern machines with circular frame, which have great performance and can work simultaneously with many threads, but such knitwear is deprived of the main advantage of Tsauri Ami, the original softness of the resulting fabric.
Most of the knitting industries in Japan are concentrated in Wakayama Prefecture. It is there that many Japanese brands produce their wonderful product.
For the main features of quality Tsuri Ami knitwear, here we listed some key points for you to spot a true catch:
– Characteristic softness of the blade. During the process of knitting on the machine, the thread does not experience tension, otherwise it is fraught with breakage and rejection. For the same reason, the productivity of Loopwheeller machines is extremely small.
– No seams on the sides of the product. Since the machine knits a web of cylindrical shape, it is not necessary to sew the web along the sides. However, it should be borne in mind that everything depends on the cut of a particular piece.
– Seam processing from the outside on the hinge machine. This element does not directly apply to loopwheeled production. But if such processing is present, then this, my friend, is a real steal.
– Use of classical styles and details. For such knitwear, most styles are based on vintage samples of 40-50x. This is not a prerequisite, but many suites or hoodies have very explicit references to the past.
Let’s now take a look some certified brands that still maintain the antique look:
The Tokyo brand ENTRY SG comes from a very clear and valid concept. In brief, the philosophy of this brand can be presented as follows:
DESIGN: The forms/cuts of these products are rooted in the traditions of the past, however, having absorbed traditions they are embodied in the present.
COLOR: it has its own mood and is able to improve a person’s life. Soft harmonious colors are used, and besides traditional colors such as gray, white or navy, ENTRY SG has a rich choice of colors, especially for T-shirts.
MATERIAL: Without a brand or even a manufacturer stamp, these are things that will become your friends and companions for many years to come. It is the material that gives you the unique comfort, convenience and durability, using the finest cotton fibers there are to present a smooth and silky surface.
SEWING AND CONSTRUCTION – Any thing can serve for a long time if it is competently “assembled” and has carefully processed seams. Here the seams are processed on old equipment in such a way that the body does not come into contact with them from the wrong side. Such a thing will give exceptional comfort and will last for many years to come.
Very warm hoodie made from cotton fleece. Fastens on a powerful metal zipper. Two hand pockets are sewn on the front.
A simple basic loopwheeled T-shirt with a round neck. A model and even an ideal thing. Dense and at the same time very soft knitted fabric. The neck is snug against the neck thanks to the elastic band. This prevents stretching of the neck and loss of shape by the product. T-shirt retains all its excellent properties even after numerous washings. A huge choice of colors!
In some models of ENTRY SG, recycled cotton is used. The trick is that the thinnest cotton fibers are deposited on the moving parts and machinery of the machines during production. These fibers are collected and re-put into production. Thanks to this, the knitted fiber from recycled cotton turns out to be even softer and more silky. Such products are always marked with a special cardboard label
Many companies that produce quality jeans in Japan, no less seriously than to denim, are also involved in the production of knitwear.
The Strike Gold are known as producers of very interesting jeans from slubby denim. At the same time in the collection of this brand there is always a good loopwheeled jersey. It is worth bearing in mind the peculiarities of cutting these things. The Strike Gold focuses on old vintage designs. Accordingly, such hoodies usually have a length to the waist, as was the case with old American knitwear.
A classic loopwheeled swirl with a round neck. Sufficiently tight and warm jersey. If we look at the wrong side, we will see a warm and fluffy fleece that will perfectly preserve heat. In the front part, the neck has a V-shaped part, which prevents it from stretching. In this way, the Sweater will serve for a long time, without stretching or losing its shape.
This is almost the same model as described above with only one difference. The filaments of this sweater are very densely colored with indigo dye. Such a thing with the passage of time will beautifully “grow old”, acquiring natural individual attrition, about the same as it happens with denim. It is worth bearing in mind that things colored with indigo dye may at first give a little “color”, daubing color everything around. Therefore, it is better to avoid the combination of such a sweater with light clothing.
If you would like to protect your head from the cool wind, the knitted hoodie from exactly the same Tsuri Ami jersey will be very handy. Here, the same nice soft jersey with a warm cotton fleece.
The hood has adjustable straps. There are small pockets in front, where you can put some useful trifle. This hoodie is fastened to the strong metal zipper of Waldes.
The same model is produced, painted in the color of indigo. The manufacturer here used a factory wash to give things an effect of light wear. You can see the very nice effect of the fraying in the area of the seams, on the pockets and in the fastening area.
The most famous brand without which it is difficult to imagine the world of Japanese repro. BUZZ RICKSON’S is a division of the Japanese company Toyo inc. and is engaged in the reproduction of military and sportswear, based on old vintage samples from the past. And it is here that the closeness to the historical original is valued. The manufacturer tries to make the thing as close to as it was in the past.
If you are looking for a Sweater, then BUZZ RICKSON’S is exactly what you need.
Sufficiently spacious cut can be used as a t-shirt underneath, while not constraining your movements. The length of this sweater is to the waist. All seams are very carefully processed by the Union Special machine. The loop knit fabric itself is one of the softest. One feels the “handmade attribute” of this thing.
The same Sweater is available in the color navy. Do not confuse this dye with indigo. Here, the shading is more persistent and the thing will not be very intense to give color.
The JELADO brand is known for its interest in vintage American clothing and taking a very painstaking approach to production. Knitwear from this manufacturer occupies a very important place in the collections, using old Loopwheeled equipment and Union Special machines for stitching and knitwear processing. Perhaps the JELADO is the densest and heaviest cotton fleece, designed to maximize heat in cold weather. In Denimio there are very limited things of this brand (they get snatched up quickly!) such as hoodies and classic Sweaters.
The STUDIO D’ARTISAN brand is a real classic in its business. A collection of loop-wheeled knitwear from this brand is always present, and is seasonally diverse in design.
Base Sweater with all the necessary details in color navy.
Very good selection of T-shirts with prints. It is rare enough to see both high quality of T-shirts and beautiful bright prints at the same time. STUDIO D’ARTISAN here, is a well-proven expert. T-shirts are made of very soft Tsuri-Ami jersey. Prints are made with a sense of humor inherent in this manufacturer.
Very high quality base T-shirt, made in two contrasting colors in the form of strips. On the chest there is a small pocket. If you look closely, you will clearly see the recognizable Tsuri Ami texture of knitted fabric in the form of a kind of transverse “rings”.
Rarely produced in loopwheeled knitwear polo shirt. All seams are carefully processed on antique equipment. There is a collar button closure and a small breast pocket.
Very interesting and time consuming product. The main feature of this Sweater is the coloring of the pigments in the indigo dye. It does not paint the product itself. Yarn is painted even before the knitting of the fabric on the supplier knits. Several cycles of staining and drying take place, then the finished product itself is factory washed, making the final indigo shade slightly shaded. This is exactly the thing that you would want to wear for many years.
We hope that the above mentioned items are of interest to you and you will certainly find something that will keep you warm and give you exceptional comfort this fall;)
Have fun and successful purchases!