The spinning mill

After the cotton has been ginned and baled, it is sent to the spinner. Our spinner is based in southern India, outside Tiruppur, which is India’s major hub for knitwear production. The spinning mill is operational 24 hours a day, employing 450 people who work eight-hour shifts. Each shift includes a 30 minute lunch break and five 20 minute tea breaks. 

Grading

In preparation for the spinning process, the cotton bales are opened and the cotton is mechanically graded and divided into different qualities. The cotton that doesn’t meet the finest quality is automatically re-baled and sold off to be used in the production of denim.

Combing

Our cotton is fully combed. Combing is a process whereby fine brushes remove approximately 15% of the volume of the cotton, leaving behind only the best, long, straight fibers which are even and aligned. The process of combing results in cotton that is softer than uncombed, or ‘carded’ cotton, because combing removes short threads that stick out and cause roughness, and all dirt and impurities have been removed from the fibers. Combed cotton is also stronger, because shorter, breakable fibers have been removed, and it has a better resistance to pilling when knitted into jersey.

Compacting

Instead of traditional ring-spun yarn, we use what is called ‘compact ring-spun’ yarn. This means that prior to spinning, the cotton fibers are arranged closely together, in a parallel position, resulting in all edge fibers being taken up into the yarn, and a more even and strong yarn is produced.

Ringspun

After combing and compacting, the cotton is now ready to be spun into thread. Rather than using yarn spun by ‘open-ended’ spinning, our yarn is spun by ‘ring-spinning’ which makes a significantly finer, stronger and softer yarn. Ringspun yarn is made by continuously twisting and thinning the cotton fibers, making a very strong, fine rope. The twisting makes the short hairs of the cotton stand out, resulting in a softer yarn.

30/1

The above processes result in the finest quality yarn being produced, which is described as a ‘30/1 measurement’. ’30’ is the measurement by which the fineness/lightness of a yarn is graded. The higher the number, the finer and softer the yarn. ‘1’ is the number of threads that are used to make a specific yarn. Our yarn is made with only one prime thread.

Knitting Mill

After the cotton has been made into yarn it is brought to the knitting mill. The mill is filled with state-of-the-art German ‘Terrot’ knitting machines that require maintenance and upkeep by skilled knitting engineers. Everything must be kept immaculately clean to ensure that dust does not interfere with the delicate knitting machines.