Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Suit Materials

Cashmere Wools
All high quality suits are made from Cashmere Wool, as it is a natural, durable, and breathable material for Summer or Winter, and it falls exceptionally well. Cashmere is an extremely soft, luxurious fabric made from the hair of the Cashmere goat - native to Kashmir in north-western India. Cashmere is obtained from the animal by combing rather than clipping, and hence it maintains a softer and more complete feel than clipped wool. The fabric is light in weight and magnificent to wear.



There are three main types of wool weaves used for suits, including:

1. Worsted
Worsted wools are the most popular fabric and wool weaves for suits. Worsted wools usually consist of gabardine, houndstooth, plaid, and nail-head variations in the weaves. They are quite light and durable and may be worn all year round.

Depending on the “Super” number of the weave, worsted wools can vary from slightly lighter to slightly heavier, but are generally considered to be a mid-weight fabric when compared with Tweed or Flannel.

If you are familiar with “Super” numbers, e.g. Super 100s up to Super 180s, when it comes to wool, you may have mistakenly taken it to mean the quality of the fabric. The Super number is not necessarily an indicator of quality. The Super number indicates that the worsted wool has been twisted more times. So the higher the number, the more times the wool yarn has been twisted when manufacturing the material.

The effect of the higher twist is that each fibre of the twisted wool yarn becomes finer and therefore more fibres can populate a square inch. This results in a finer cloth and lighter weight as you go up in the Super numbers. This is why higher twist wools are pricier than lower twist – because the material is softer, lighter and has a more luxurious look and feel to it.

Having said that, lower twist wool can be thicker, warmer and more durable than the higher twist. So for everyday wear, I recommend that you purchase something in the Super 100s – Super 130s range. Whereas for higher-end, less regular wear, the Super 140s – Super 180s is more suitable.


2. Tweed
Tweed is a very heavy wool fabric, and is more popular in colder places such as Britain. Tweed is for more mature gentlemen, and is beginning to be a dated style amongst the younger generation. It is usually used to make Sports Jackets and Blazers, but rarely used for a full two or three piece suit.

3. Flannel
Aside from Tweed, Flannel is the heaviest wool weave. It is quite durable and especially warm in the winter months. It is probably too hot to wear in Summer and also in most indoor office environments, but would make an excellent Winter Jacket for the colder part of the year.

Other Fabrics
Suits may be made from other fabrics as well, but these are not considered high-end quality suits.

1. Cotton
Aside from wool, Cotton is an acceptable material for suits. If you live in a warmer climate this is an alternative to wool, however it does not bring the prestige or luxury of a pure cashmere wool suit. Cashmere Wool can also be light and cool in warm climates depending on the twist of the yarn and hence the weight of the material.

2. Linen
Linen is quick to wrinkle and does not fall well, but is still a popular material for some. For a business suit it is not appropriate at all. It has traditionally been used for safari suits, very casual suits, or simply white or cream casual jackets but is not really in fashion in the present day.

3. Polyester
Polyester is not the best choice for a good quality suit, and must only be resorted to if the budget is tight. A good quality tailor-made suit would certainly never be made from Polyester or a Polyester-Wool blend, as the material has a cheap looking artificial finish to it.

4. Micro Fibre
Micro Fibre is just variation of polyester. For some reason it gained popularity in the late 90s. If you do have a Micro Fibre suit, don’t worry – everyone makes mistakes. But now it is time to forget the past and move on to Pure Cashmere Wool suits!

At Sydney Custom Suits we sell only 100% Pure Cashmere Wool suits. You can be assured that you will get a high quality custom Finestitch & Co. suit styled and tailored to perfection.

11 comments:

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