Off the subject, but what good thread isn't always off the topic..
The old cloth is absolutely lovely.
Originally Posted by T4phage
Originally Posted by mafoofan
I just received a swatch of the "old" Simonnot Godard chambray in the mail. Here is old versus new, side-by-side:
Not even remotely the same kind of shirting. For better or worse, the old-style is clearly much more irregular--both in the weaving and coloration. If you look carefully, the dye density in the blue yarns varies quite a bit. In contrast, the blue yarns in the new-style chambray appear to have taken the dye much more evenly.
The older cloth on the left appeals to me more than the generic-looking cloth on the right.
Originally Posted by Manton
The thing is, though, there IS something nice about that Chambray. Its a bit rougher and fuzzier than broadcloth, but not as thick as Oxford, and has in interesting nap and a very dry hand. I am as anti-poly as anyone. But why can't someone make that same style in all cotton? It would be nice.
There is a thread of thought out there that cloth makers drove towards technical perfection at the cost of aesthetic appeal.
Here's a long quote from Bud Strickland of Cone Mills (taken from Loomstate
), making that point:
Originally Posted by Bud Strickland
Magnadraft was touted to be the latest and greatest technology in its day (the 1960s). What it was, rather than having a lever hold tension on the rolls in the drafting zone where the roving is elongated in making the desired yarn size, weighted rolls were used. The weighted rolls were magnetized and held in place by magnetic force.. So that's how Magnadraft came about.
Over time magnets can lose some of their power unless they're re-magnetised. You didn't really know which rolls were providing a little more tension than other rolls, so you're starting to get all these variations within the yarn, just due to the the strength of the magnet changing over time. And of course, people didn't realize exactly what was happening until after the fact. And that 's where a lot of the yarn character came from. It was a little bit more pronounced than the older technology, which from a technical standpoint turned out to be better. But from an aesthetic standpoint, of course, Magnadraft gave a look that everyone came to love.
Nowadays, of course, you're simulating the Magnadraft spinning inconsistencies, by programming the yarns with a computerised spinning system. What is the system and how does it work?
Yes, it is programmed.. We use a computerised system that can make slubs, we can control the number of slubs, the thickness of slubs, the length of the slubs, the frequency of the slubs, and combine different slubs in one yarn. The system we use is made by Amsler. It's a Swiss-made system. There are others on the market but that's the one we use - it allows us to engineer the yarns to reproduce those looks.
The clothmakers use a computerized system to program the machines into making cloth with the imperfections that came from older technologies, because people liked the cloth from the older technologies better.
It raises interesting questions of authenticity.
Back to the main line of the thread.