Invista, owners of the Lycra brand, is unveiling a transformative technology for knit denim fabrics at the upcoming Kingpins Denim Shows in Amsterdam and New York. Under the platform of Lycra Hybrid technology, these fabrics combine the best of comfort and flexibility of knits with the authentic aesthetics and performance of woven fabrics.

“What distinguishes this technology from existing knit denim is that the Lycra Hybrid fabrics integrate a true denim look and feel with low growth, low shrinkage, and multi directional stretch,” said Jean Hegedus, Invista’s global director for denim. “Additionally, the fabrics can be engineered for use in a range of different garment types, each serving different consumer needs.”

The Lycra Hybrid fabrics have been segmented into three different categories, each with own specific performance levels: Everyday denim fabrics that meet Invista’s standards carry the Lycra brand; fabrics that meet Invista’s shaping technology standards can qualify as part of the Lycra Beauty brand; fabrics that meet Invista’s athleisure standards can qualify for Lycra Sport branding.

“We’re very excited about the integration of Lycra Sport fabrics into the denim market space,” Hegedus continues. “Our testing helps identify the right level of stretch, recovery, and force to ensure comfort, freedom of movement, and performance in an active inspired garment.” 

Invista began working on the new technology several years ago when they saw that performance fabrics were taking an increasingly important role in the denim industry. The fabrics employ a specific patent construction to achieve the look and feel of traditional denim, but with much greater stretch and flexibility. Another unique function of the technology is that you can engineer the fabric to have the particular level of stretch you desire.  “We have been able to achieve fabrics with over 100% stretch in one direction and more than 50% in the other, with less than 5% growth,” adds Tianyi Liao, research fellow at Invista and inventor of the technology.

Invista worked on this project under a confidentiality agreement with several mills, including Advance Denim of China, Knitdigo of Taiwan, Santanderina of Spain, and Willy Hermann of Austria. Garments from these mills are presented at the Kingpins Shows. Invista will also be hosting a seminar on the technology at the fairs, which will include a panel discussion by representatives of some of the mills, and a video featuring students who have personally tried jeans made with the new technology.

The Kingpins Denim shows will be held in Amsterdam on 28 and 29 October at the Westergasfabriek and in New York on 3 and 4 November, Pier 36 NYC, Basketball City, 299 South Street.