THE PERFORMANCE FORUM FABRICS

December 2020

Ten categories for fabrics, the accessories and the awards constitute the PERFORMANCE FORUM, carefully selected by a jury made up from experts from universities apparel brands, purchasing teams and fabric technologists from across the industry. The perfect platform to introduce and to view the latest textile innovations and trends from selected suppliers!

 

FOCUS TOPIC

Nothing to Waste - Closing the Loop: A cradle to cradle textile that is recycled consists of 100 per cent ecologically pure materials and substances that can be reused. Its recyclability, alongside fashionable or functional aspects, is fully taken into account during the development process. More and more manufacturers are turning to the use of recycled fibres in the development of fabrics, which can be reprocessed into recycled fibres. In this category, bio-based and non-bio-based mono-component fabrics (no fibre blends) – which are mostly recycled – as well as natural fibres have been selected. A total of four groups could be defined: Nylons, polyester fibres, wool and cotton. The purer and cleaner the original fabric, the easier it is to recycle in the end. The manufacturers present a whole range of materials such as: PET bottles in yarns, recyclable materials and blends, garments that decompose in a cradle-to-cradle approach, and more. The use of mono-component fabrics for 3-layer jackets from mostly recycled materials is a new and innovative approach. 

In order to check the recyclability of a fabric or the DIN standards (DIN EN ISO 14021), the PERFORMANCE DAYS Jury advises to inquire and clarify these specific points directly with the respective supplier.

drirelease

Stotz

Willy Schmitz / Becker Tuche

Schoeller GmbH & Co

Concept III

Designer Textiles

Solis

Brugnoli

Flying Tex

Dry-tex

Flying Textile

Erictex

Climashield - Green Side Fabrics

ALIC

Dry-tex

Hyosung

Joyoung Knitting

drirelease

Antex / Seaqual

Antex / Seaqual

Cifra

Utenos

Balas Textile

Taiwan Functional Textiles

Baselayer

There is an increasing dominance in this category by the group of natural fibres, consisting mainly of wool, wool blends, organic wool jersey, hemp, bamboo or coconut shell. The soft viscose fibre made of bamboo pulp, often combined with argon oil, provides a wonderfully soft and pleasant feeling on the skin. The variations here are extremely diverse. A distinction is made between wool, partly combined with Tencel, which provides for a soft, light feel. We have also seen the recent addition of the use of Smartcel, an innovative Tencel Lyocell high-tech fibre, which is produced on the basis of natural cellulose and the trace element zinc, which is a guarantee for revitalising effects. Seacell is a fibre obtained from seaweed. It contains trace elements including minerals and vitamins, which also boast positive effects on the human body, which are then released when moisturised in smaller amounts with a beneficial effect. In contrast to Seaqual – where for production plastic waste is removed from the sea and processed into a new, environmentally friendly polyester fibre. More and more manufacturers are applying the processing of milk proteins from non-food milk. Bio-based polyamide is another important category. This includes the likes of recycled polyamide, fluffy jacquards, pure recycled polyester, Polartec Delta, Tencel and polyester fabric constructions. Naia spun fibre is a newcomer to this segment. It is soft, quick-drying and reduces pilling. It interweaves well with other environmentally friendly materials such as Lyocell, Modal or recycled polyester.

Omniteksas

Utenos

Alto Milanese

Zeynar

Brugnoli

Fieratex

Cifra

Chichampe

Hemp Fortex

Fieratex

Alto Milanese

Maglificio Corno

Tessile Fiorentina

Pontetorto

Hyosung

Billion Union

Sitip

Concept III

Yuan Chan

New Wide

Billion Union

Sheico

Manifattura EffePi / Carvico / Jersey Lomellina

Polartec

Midlayer

Midlayers are primarily intended to provide warmth when layering garments.This category also displays an extremely large number of natural materials in Winter 22/23. The variety on offer is extraordinary. The focus is on newer constructions to generate heat, yet at the same time, manufacturers are attempting to reduce or completely avoid the use of micro-plastics in the development process. More focus is being placed on natural fibres such as micro-modal, cotton, hemp, organic cotton, Tencel, merino wool or fabrics made of soya. Hemp is increasingly replacing the use of cotton. The much lower water and energy consumption levels alone, compared to cotton or polyester, make hemp a better alternative. Furthermore, hemp is in no need of any chemicals, making it a fully natural eco-fibre. On top of all this, there are high-loft fleeces made of 100 per cent polyester, super technical knitwear with Seaquel fibre components, Polartec Highloft, Overdied Grip Velour, biodegradable polyester up to elaborate polyester 3D constructions. Tencel articles continue to feature prominently; the same goes for new air-chamber variants. All fleece fabrics, e.g. made of Tencel or hemp, are napped on the inside, but without any use of micro-plastic. There is a trend towards Sherpa fabric, which is replacing high-loft fleece qualities, being the more environmentally friendly option due to the low amount of shedding micro-plastic. 

Polartec

Duksung Inco

Lanificio Becagli

Lanificio Becagli

Pontetorto

drirelease

Utenos

Fieratex

Omniteksas

drirelease

Utenos

Utenos

Designer Textiles

Antex / Seaqual

Thygesen & Birk

Schoeller GmbH & Co

Joyoung Knitting

Tessile Fiorentina

Tessile Fiorentina

Tessile Fiorentina

Polartec

Concept III

ECOSENSOR by AsahiKASEI

ECOSENSOR by AsahiKASEI

Softshell & Outer Midlayer

Warming, windproof and water-repellent jackets worn outdoors as an outer layer during sports or leisure activities typify the Outer Midlayer category. One trend that is clearly visible:the classic softshell is increasingly being replaced by the Midlayer, which provides outdoor protection against wind, rain and the cold. Polyamide and polyester fibres remain dominant even in winter 22/23. The chemical fibres are often recycled, are even biodegradable or are used in a bio-variant. The use of elastane or stretch PU provides for more freedom of movement. Anyone on the lookout for natural fibres will find various blends of organic cotton, cotton or wool.

BenQ Materials

Pontetorto

Evertex

Windtex Vagotex

Chichampe

Solis

BenQ Materials

Long Advance

Hwa Fune

Suzhou Q

Ducksan

JRC

Duksung Inco

Schoeller Textil

ALIC

Windtex Vagotex

Joyoung Knitting

Derun

Kunshan Sanchuan

Alto Milanese

Merryson

JRC

Sitip

Alto Milanese

2.5 & 3Layer

The membrane is glued to the outer material and inner lining to form a single unit. This creates the ultimate durable solution, lighter than 2-layer jackets and more robust than their 2.5-layer counterparts. 3-layer jackets are especially recommended when travelling often with a heavy backpack, in rocky terrain and when exposed frequently to adverse weather conditions. The functional 3-layer fabrics can no longer refrain from the use of natural fibres and recycled variants. The natural fibres convince overall with great values, especially in terms of breathability and waterproofness, providing 100 per cent recycled cotton with a PFC-free water-repellent coating, along with a 40 per cent linen, organic cotton blend. In the area of special membranes, XPore is often used, as is the bio-based membrane Dupont Susterra, biodegradable polyamide or recycled polyester with graphite membrane. The group of lightweights made of recycled nylon, and partly of recycled road waste, are wafer-thin yet robust. Ripstop, lightweight 60-gram mini-ripstop, ultra technical Drytex, ultra lightweight hard shells, recycled polyamide and polyester lightweights complete this category. Among the mono components, a multi-coloured jacquard and two Oxford structures in polyester and Nylon are a pleasant surprise.

Flying Textile

BenQ Materials

Flying Textile

Hwa Fune

Technow

TDI

Ho Yu

Flying Tex

Long Advance

BenQ Materials

BenQ Materials

BenQ Materials

Green Threads

Windtex Vagotex

ECOSENSOR by AsahiKASEI

Flying Tex

Dry-tex

Flying Tex

Kunshan Sanchuan

Green Threads

Solis

Seojin

Flying Tex

Seojin

2Layer

In 2-layer constructions, the membrane is glued to the upper material and a loosely attached lining is applied on the inside for protective purposes. 2-layer jackets are usually somewhat heavier and not quite as robust.

Here you can find once again wonderful new structures, from classic extremely durable variants to new 3D structures that enable exciting design formats. The fabrics guarantee high breathability and water column, are light and impress with great stretch properties. Nylons are meanwhile available in numerous variants, mostly recycled, with some of the yarn derived from old fishing nets. BASF presents an organic variant that replaces harmful chemicals with vegetable oil from certified, environmentally friendly sources. Econyl is another option: Instead of using crude oil as in conventional nylon production, Econyl production uses waste materials such as production waste from the nylon manufacturing process, fabric remnants and carpets and fishing nets from the oceans. Cotton is blended with polyester or with Eco Rayon. Polyester fibres come with a recycled PET membrane, with stretch or innovative technologies such as special polymerisation spinning technologies.

Flying Textile

Liou Long Tai

Seojin

Plptex

Achievetex

Flying Textile

Taiwan Functional Textiles

Schoeller Textil

J&B

Merryson

TDI

ASF

Flying Tex

Hwa Fune

Schoeller Textil

Seojin

J&B

Toray

Itttai

Achievetex

Ho Yu

Seojin

Hwa Fune

ECOSENSOR by AsahiKASEI

Lightweight & Downproof

The lighter variants of the winter models are ultra-light, breathable and heat-insulating. They also impress with their wide range of appealing colours and designs.

The trend here is towards the typical nylon qualities of many Korean fibre manufacturers, which are produced using the air-washed process. It is also astonishing that lightweights can now be processed from Econyl and other recycled fibres without losing any of their lightness. Almost all fibres – from nylon, Econyl, polyamide to polyester – are over 90 per cent recycled, and often dyed with vegetable variants or dyed in a dope dyed process.

Climashield - Green Side Fabrics

Synnix

Silkytex

ALIC

Mectex

TDI

Mectex

Suzhou Q

IBQ

Duksung Inco

Synnix

Toray

Toray

Green Threads

Silkytex

Toray

Duksung Inco

Green Threads

Achievetex

Achievetex

Green Threads

Monotex

Toray

Green Threads

Shirt, Pants & Tights

The trend towards fabrics of natural origin is also evident here. Among others still fresh in use are manila- and banana hemp, which is extracted from the abaca plant of the banana family (Musaceae). In the category of tights for running, fitness or yoga, the trend is moving away from the classic shiny tapewear articles to circular knitted articles with a matt look. Alongside soft, unique Tencel fabrics in robust quality, the many innovations in recycled variants are surprising, such as recycled Double Knit or newly recycled Coolmax. The blends of Eco Vero are also very exciting, with fibres made from certified renewable wood sources in combination with Seaqual and Tencel from controlled cultivation.

Derun

Derun

Manifattura EffePi / Carvico / Jersey Lomellina

Schoeller Textil

Penn Textile Solutions

Balas Textile

Liou Long Tai

Chichampe

Brugnoli

ECOSENSOR by AsahiKASEI

Dry-tex

Schoeller Textil

IBQ

Hemp Fortex

Kunshan Sanchuan

Tiara

Right Sports Apparels

Lemar

Everest

Long Advance

Suzhou Q

Tiara

Hemp Fortex

Right Sports Apparels

Lifestyle

Natural high-density cloth, thick winter fabrics, natural jerseys and digital print looks prevail in the lifestyle category. The colours are reminiscent of autumn, ranging from curry to cognac and mustard. The variety is great: robust, easy-grip linen and organic cotton blends, winter twills made of 100 per cent recycled cotton, beautiful linen- and Tencel weaves, Oxford fabrics, batiked naturally dyed denim fabrics and recycled polyester are ideal for thick yet elegant winter coats and jackets. In addition, there are classic winter fabrics such as loden made of 20 per cent recycled polyamide and 80 per cent wool, lumberjack fleece made of recycled wool, Eco Rayon and polyamide blends or a polyamide/lycra mix. The natural jerseys range from recycled polyester and abakar, hemp und cotton blends to double-face knits. 

Pontetorto

Omniteksas

Plptex

Willy Schmitz / Becker Tuche

Zeynar

Schoeller GmbH & Co

Willy Schmitz / Becker Tuche

Liou Long Tai

Liou Long Tai

Omniteksas

Lemar

New Wide

Willy Schmitz / Becker Tuche

Everest

Evertex

Suzhou Q

Cifra

Stotz

Stotz

Schoeller GmbH & Co

Pontetorto

Hemp Fortex

Liou Long Tai

Cifra

Safety & Durability

Durability, abrasion protection, tear resistance, elasticity, breathability, wearing comfort – workwear materials need to perform high technical values. In addition, the appropriate colour management is of particular importance for the workwear sector – bright, dazzling, neon signal tones dominate. Many fibres are also recycled in the workwear sector, or are of natural origin. In general, cotton fibres that are available in recycled or organic variants are gaining in importance. PFC coatings provide for additional protection and tear resistance. Newcomers in this segment are 100 per cent recycled Cordura and recycled biodegradable PET. Vectran spun from liquid crystal polymers is often used to provide cut resistance. This fibre is five times stronger than steel, making it ideal for use in workwear.

Antex / Seaqual

Chi Hsin

Merryson

Chi Hsin

Merryson

Chi Hsin

Merryson

FOV

Taiwan Functional Textiles

Lemar

Kunshan Sanchuan

Hyosung

Merryson

Chi Hsin

Lanificio Becagli

IBQ

Manifattura EffePi / Carvico / Jersey Lomellina

IBQ

Tohei Tsusho

Duksung Inco

Long Advance

ALIC

Ho Yu

Stotz

 

Divided into the 10 most important functional fabric categories the TABLES offer the first look at current trends, textile innovations and sustainable options. The categories JURY'S PICK, BASELAYER, MIDLAYER, OUTER MIDLAYER, 2.5 & 3LAYER, 2LAYER, LIGHTWEIGHT & DOWNPROOF, SHIRT, PANTS & TIGHTS, LIFESTYLE, SAFETY & DURABILITY and provide a comprehensive overview of the highlights and innovations!

Besides the current PERFORMANCE FORUM items, previous items can be found in the product search and producer search.