Textile companies are picking up the pace to create innovative fibers, fabrics and finishings to serve the growing activewear market, from thermo-regulating and antimicrobrial to anti-abrasion and water-wicking materials.
Asher Fabric Concepts, a Los Angeles-based supplier of domestic knit fabrics for the contemporary sportswear, activewear and intimate apparel markets, is the latest, introducing a new collection of knits called Cool Sport aimed at addressing the need for temperature regulating fabrics for the sector.
This range of fabrics will be spun on Asher Fabric Concepts’ new Santoni knitting machines that create micro-gauge knits for better smoothness and compression. These high-tech machines are housed in Asher Fabric Concepts new manufacturing facility in nearby Vernon, Calif. In October, Asher Fabric Concepts unveiled a modern 4,000-square-foot showroom in the Boyle Heights neighborhood in Los Angeles.
A featured performance fabric in the Cool Sport collection is called Woven Knit or W.K.
Asher Shalom, president of Asher Fabric Concepts, said W.K. has the ability “to mold to the skin without the heaviness of most fabrics.”
“The innovation is in the machine’s ability to utilize air pressure as opposed to sinkers in the way of the past,” Shalom said. “Using air creates a smooth aesthetic.”
W.K. is made with Breeze by Nilit, a nylon cooling yarn serving the performance active, swimwear, shapewear and dress markets with the ability to add topical antimicrobial and wicking finishes. W.K. is available in a variety of weights ranging from 8 ounces to 11.5 ounces selling for $8 to $11 a yard, Shalom said Cool Sport is meant to be used in any season.
Cool Sport joins new offerings such as Invista’s Cooling Technology by Lycra Beauty and Unifi Inc.’s Sorbtek fiber that each use technologies and materials to create moisture management that provide cooling effects to apparel made with it and to consumers wearing them.
Asher said more fabrics in the Cool Sport collection will be available soon.