T-shirt is a style of fabric shirt, named after the letter “T” shape of the body and sleeves. It is normally associated with short sleeves, a round neck line known as a “crew neck”, and no collar. If we want to make a T-shirt we need to cut out the folowing parts: front, back, two sleeves and crew neck – which is a shape of stripe. Sewing two parts together is being done with an overlock sewing machine.
Usually an overlock sewing machine will cut the edges of the cloth as they are fed through, though some are made without cutters. Most overlock machines are 3-threaded but good garment manufacturers are using a 4-thread overlock machine which gives an extra strenght while retaining flexibility. After that we are going to use the 2-needle lockstitch machine for edges finishing. Usually it’s folding by 2cm and then sewing by lockstitch machine.
All labels are sewed in with the 1-needle lockstitch macine. Some garment manufacturers are putting an extra tape on the neck which absorbs sweat. This is being done with the special double looper tape binding machine. Some T-shirts instead of crew neck standard ribb finishing have piping finishing – a type of trim consisting of a strip of folded fabric inserted into seam to define the edge. Piping is being done with the special binding machine. So we can make a T-shirt with just two sewing machines but if we want to have some more we use 3 to 5 different sewing machines.
Jersey is a knit fabric mostly used for clothing manufacture. It was originally made of wool, but is now made of wool, cotton, and synthetic fibres like Polyester, Elastan or Viscouse. Since medieval times Jersey, Channel Islands, where the material was first produced, had been an important exporter of knitted good and the fabric in wool from Jersey became well known.
The fabric can be a very stretchy single knitting, usually light-weight, jersey with one flat side and one piled side. When made with a lightweight yarn, this is the fabric most often used to make T-shirts. It can also be a double knitted jersey (interlock jersey), with less stretch, that creates a heavier fabric of two single jerseys knitted together to leave the two flat sides on the outsides of the fabric, with the piles in the middle.
Nevertheless Single Jersey is considered to be the most popular fabric for T-shirt production. Single Jersey fabric can be knitted with different weights: 100, 140, 155, 160, 180, 200, 210 grams per fabric meter and different composition. 100% Cotton Single Jersey is the most popular, but if extra flexibility is needed on the regular basis 4% of Elastan is added to the fabric when knitting. 96% Cotton 4% Elastan Single Jersey fabric is commonly used for women T-shirt production (because of it’s flexibility).
The most used and wearable piece of garment on the Earth. Everybody has at least a few of them in wardrobe. But do we know, how the T-shirt was born? This article will show you the beginnings of the T-shirt.
The earliest T-shirt was issued in the United States by the U.S. Navy sometime around the Spanish American War and 1913. The first T-shirt had a crew neck and short sleeves and it was meant to be worn underwear beneath the uniform. Soon it was adopted by the Army as a part of the standard issue ensemble given to recruits. It got an iconic name from its shape resembling the letter “T”. Dockworkers, farmers, miners, and construction type workers also adopted the T-shirt preferring the single jersey cotton in warmer weather conditions. The word “T-shirt” became a part of American English by the 1920s, and appeared in the Merriam-Webster Dictionary.
The earliest screen printed shirt was perhaps the highly sought-after collectible tee made for promoting the 1939 film “The Wizard of OZ” (no photo available). Credit of the first printed tee often goes to the Air Corps Gunnery School T-shirt featured on the July 13th, 1942 cover of LIFE magazine. Mickey Mouse would follow suit a few years later as an exclusively licensed print for Tropix Togs, a company founded by Sam Kantor in Miami, Florida.
Following World War II, it became common to see veterans wearing their uniform trousers with their T-shirts as casual clothing.
Aside from veterans and bluecollar workers, the popularity of the T-shirt reached to even greater heights when Marlon Brando wore one in “A Streetcar Named Desire”. It became fashionably cool to wear as an outer garment.
Today T-shirt is 101 year old and its versions are available in many different designs and fabrics and styles.