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Obertshausen - Karl Mayer is continuing to explore the fashion trend for combining sportswear and leisurewear, which using the possibilities provided by a lace raschel machine, has led to a completely new type of apparel fabric.

This new textile innovation is based on the MJ 52/1 S, and is known under the new tradename of Leisuree.Fashion.

This multibar jacquard raschel machine produces stretch and non-stretch all-over lace and tapes, as well as light, elegant lace creations catering for the trend towards Chantilly lace. Completely new products, which come somewhere between classic lingerie lace and complex sportswear fabrics, can also be produced.

The configuration of the guide bars on this machine is mainly responsible for the versatility of the machine. The MJ models have one jacquard bar and three ground guide bars for optionally processing elastane, one of which works the stitches

Knitting elastane in the ground is nothing new, but there was little demand for it on the volume-oriented market of the past and also meant that the yarn feed had to be modified.

Valentina Krel, who works in textile product development at Karl Mayer, discovered during the course of processing trials that lightweight elastane cannot currently be processed because it is not strong enough. Processing elastane with very high yarn counts in both the ground and pattern bars requires further knitting trials to be carried out in order to be able to fully utilise the speed potential of the machine.

“If our expectations of the trials are met, we will step up our product development in the Leisuree.Fashion sector significantly. Our customers have already signaled that they are very interested in this,” said Krel, adding she a Krel is currently working on customer trials involving the production of pre-made-up items directly on the machine.

According to Karl Mayer, the textile product innovations in the Leisuree.Fashion sector have been extremely promising. At one of the company's 80th anniversary celebrations, an unusual, stretch fabric for shapewear brands was being produced on an MJ 52/1 S. This fabric was lighter and more feminine than normal fabrics, creates transparent and opaque effects and, with its relief-like, superimposed design, is reminiscent of lace.

A dense fabric with a light, two-way-stretch ground produced by the jacquard bar and the stitch-forming ground bar at the rear was also being produced on the
MJ 52/1 S.

"In the fashion world, the boundaries between the different types of clothing are being increasingly broken down," says Karl Mayer. "Garments featuring an unusual hybrid mix of styles are generating good business for textile companies. They are eye-catching on the street and keep machine developers busy.

"The production machines must also be extremely flexible and Karl Mayer’s Leisuree.Fashion is precisely that."

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