• I'm happy to introduce the Styleforum Happy Hour, our brand new podcast featuring lively discussion about menswear and the fashion industry. In the inaugural edition, a discussion of what's going on in retail today. Please check it out on the Journal. All episodes will be also be available soon on your favorite podcast platform.

  • Hi, we have updated our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy in anticipation of the upcoming new Calfornia laws, the CCPA. If you are a resident of California, these rights pertain to you. Thanks - Styleforum Team.
  • STYLE. COMMUNITY. GREAT CLOTHING.

    Bored of counting likes on social networks? At Styleforum, you’ll find rousing discussions that go beyond strings of emojis.

    Click Here to join Styleforum's thousands of style enthusiasts today!

Suits vs Water

Chich

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 18, 2013
Messages
47
Reaction score
0
hey guys,

I read that a fussed jacket tends to start bubbling when it gets exposed to generous amounts of water, what happens to full canvas jackets? Also how much water is needed for the damage to occur?

Thanks
 

Blackhood

Distinguished Member
Joined
Feb 5, 2010
Messages
2,904
Reaction score
368
This is not a subject anyone can answer. How many hailstones will ruin a car?

Poor quality fusible will break down eventually, and that process will be accelerated by water.

When wool gets wet it can move and shrink, the trouble comes when the wool changes shape and the fusible it trying to pull it into its old shape. That can make ripples and pulls.

Higher quality wools will hold up bet to getting damp.

Merino wool holds about 30% of its own weight in water before suffering adverse effects. That means an entire suit might be able to withstand half a glass of water if it were evenly distributed and then left to air dry.

Canvas is better because it is not totally connected to the cloth (it is stitched rather that a smooth sheet of glue) and thus can handle movements and small changes better. It is however a cotton-horsehair thing and will absorb water eventually.

All of this is also in the context that higher quality materials will handle moisture in a more predictable way.
 

Chich

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 18, 2013
Messages
47
Reaction score
0
Interesting, thanks for the info. I assume though that eventually even a canvas jacket will start to ripple? So with that in mind, probably a good idea to avoid things such as rain then?

Cheers
 

OxxfordSJLINY

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 24, 2007
Messages
659
Reaction score
7

Interesting, thanks for the info. I assume though that eventually even a canvas jacket will start to ripple? So with that in mind, probably a good idea to avoid things such as rain then?

Cheers

Just use an umbrella when there is any kind of precipitation (problem solved).
 

Caustic Man

Stylish Dinosaur
Joined
Apr 17, 2012
Messages
10,572
Reaction score
10,418
A bit of precipitation on a suit or jacket has never caused me major issues. However I can say that I have never seriously soaked an item. I'd say don't worry if a bit of rain gets on you. Worry if you get soaked. Of course, different materials behave different ways. So try to stay dry.
 

cptjeff

Distinguished Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2010
Messages
4,642
Reaction score
318

Interesting, thanks for the info. I assume though that eventually even a canvas jacket will start to ripple? So with that in mind, probably a good idea to avoid things such as rain then?

Cheers

No. The bubbling and rippling you hear about is caused by the fusing coming unglued from the cloth in spots. Since canvas is stitched on rather than glued, it's not likely that you'll develop any problems that can't be fixed by a pressing.

All that said, fusing has gotten much, much better in the decades since it was first introduced, so while there are still issues with overall quality, bubbling issues are largely a thing of the past.

Personally, I've never had any issues with rain on jackets, fused or canvassed, but I do tend to try and stay dry. Don't worry about it.
 
Last edited:

Chich

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 18, 2013
Messages
47
Reaction score
0
Just use an umbrella when there is any kind of precipitation (problem solved).
A bit of precipitation on a suit or jacket has never caused me major issues. However I can say that I have never seriously soaked an item. I'd say don't worry if a bit of rain gets on you. Worry if you get soaked. Of course, different materials behave different ways. So try to stay dry.
Haha yeah see, I carry around a little portable umbrella for such things but recently as I've started learning about suits, I've become so much more aware of the hordes of people in the city that come into the trains/trams absolutely soaked from the rain in their suits and it just seems like I'm missing all the fun being nice and dry under my umbrella :p


No. The bubbling and rippling you hear about is caused by the fusing coming unglued from the cloth in spots. Since canvas is stitched on rather than glued, it's not likely that you'll develop any problems that can't be fixed by a pressing.

All that said, fusing has gotten much, much better in the decades since it was first introduced, so while there are still issues with overall quality, bubbling issues are largely a thing of the past.

Personally, I've never had any issues with rain on jackets, fused or canvassed, but I do tend to try and stay dry. Don't worry about it.
Interesting, so pressing a canvassed suit should normally fix issues arising from water exposure? I'm assuming this is unless you expose to enough water that the wool starts to shrink?
 

cptjeff

Distinguished Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2010
Messages
4,642
Reaction score
318

Interesting, so pressing a canvassed suit should normally fix issues arising from water exposure? I'm assuming this is unless you expose to enough water that the wool starts to shrink?

Wool doesn't actually shrink much. It felts. With large amounts of agitation when wet, the scales on the wool fibers get raised, and start sticking too each other. With loose and fluffy yarns in a sweater, that can become a big problem- they stick to each other, and thus become denser. When you have the same amount of wool, but it's all much tighter together, you get a garment that's much smaller than it once was. But when you walk around in a wool suit, you're not really rubbing the wool too much, except under the arms and between your legs, and they don't get too wet in a rainstorm. You might get some pilling, but especially in a cloth with tightly spun thread, you're going to see very little effect.

For a canvassed suit, the wetness might release some of the previous pressing job. When a suit is pressed, it's stretched and formed to hold in a particular shape, since with a little steam and heat, you can get wool to hold a shape, a crease being a fairly obvious example. It won't do any damage to the suit, but you may lose the shaping, and the suit will look rumpled. A pressing restores that shape and makes the suit look crisp again.
 
Last edited:

Chich

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 18, 2013
Messages
47
Reaction score
0
Ah wise one, you are very knowledgeable indeed. Thank you for sharing your wisdom.
 

Styleforum is proudly sponsored by

Featured Sponsor

How wide do you like your leg opening on your trousers?

  • 7”

    Votes: 62 17.5%
  • 7.5”

    Votes: 119 33.5%
  • 8”

    Votes: 105 29.6%
  • 8.5”

    Votes: 37 10.4%
  • 9”

    Votes: 16 4.5%
  • 9.5”

    Votes: 7 2.0%
  • 10”

    Votes: 1 0.3%
  • 10.5”

    Votes: 8 2.3%

Related Threads

Forum statistics

Threads
432,898
Messages
9,280,701
Members
194,779
Latest member
billylowey52
Top