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Invista Inc. formally unveiled its latest breakthrough technology at the Mode City trade fair in Paris.
This story first appeared in the September 29, 2008 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
The Lycra 2.0 technology features patented products to provide garments with banded hems, seams and bands with stretch and recovery that meet the Lycra spandex brand promise of comfort, fit and freedom of movement. The bands are designed to provide sleek, smooth, all-day fit and reduce undergarment lines created by bulky, narrow elastics.
In addition, the fibers and textiles giant announced the winner of the Lycra 2.0 garment technology award at a cocktail and dinner: Brandon Grimm of the Fashion Institute of Technology of New York.
Invista held student design contests in Hong Kong, Milan, New York and Leicester, England, to find the top intimate apparel design. In New York, designs from a dozen FIT students were submitted.
Grimm, who received his award Sept. 7 at the landmark Serre du Parc André Citroën, a modernistic house of glass, said he worked one to two days a week for eight weeks to complete his design.
“The concept was the easiest thing to do, but to get the actual tape to work, we designed outside of the scope of the way Invista wanted us to use it, with bone casing and attaching bindings,” said Grimm, who majors in fashion design with a specialty in intimate apparel. “That was the basis of the contest. They knew this tape could do what it was meant to do. But the challenge was to go beyond and above what was expected of the students.”
Grimm said he came up with 20 ideas and narrowed the possibilities to five.
“My professor and mentor, Alexandra Arnilles, was there to guide us through the entire contest,” he said. “My original drawing was lace. But I came in one day with a new design which was not lace, a new way to create embellishments on intimate apparel garments. The embellishment is the contrasting colors.”
Regarding working with the new high-tech tape, Grimm said, “The tape was great but very time-consuming because we didn’t have the commercial equipment. We would use a regular iron instead of high-tech sewing machines that are meant to [heat-seal] glue. Not one sewing machine was turned on. You could only hear the sound of steam from the irons.”
Grimm, who graduates in May, said he has several appointments lined up with “big companies” for a design position.
“Hopefully, I’ll be working for one of those large companies,” he said.