USA: Min­istry of Sup­ply makes a blazer in 90 min­utes!

Stitch World - - TECH TRACK -

Bos­ton ( US)-based cloth­ing re­tailer Min­istry of Sup­ply has in­stalled a 3D ro­botic knitting ma­chine at its New­bury Street flag­ship. The 10-feet long WHOLEGARMENT Mach2XS ma­chine by Shima Seiki, is ca­pa­ble of knitting a cus­tom­ized blazer au­to­mat­i­cally in around 90 min­utes.

Ex­plain­ing the tech­nol­ogy, the re­tailer says cus­tomers just need to pro­vide spec­i­fi­ca­tions such as colour and mea­sure­ments which will be pro­grammed into the ma­chine with hu­man in­ter­ven­tion, and the rest op­er­a­tions will be done au­to­mat­i­cally by the ma­chine.

While it cur­rently takes a few days for the re­tailer to pro­duce a saleable prod­uct due to the need to wash the gar­ment and sew on but­tons, and there­fore, the re­tailer in­tends to be able to hand over gar­ments to the cus­tomers dur­ing their sin­gle visit to the store. Also, with this tech­nol­ogy, the Min­istry of Sup­ply is plan­ning to man­u­fac­ture up to one-third of its cloth­ing within a cou­ple of years. Fur­ther­more, the re­tailer claims this ma­chine is the first- of-its-kind in the in­dus­try. Pro­duc­tion time for each item is con­sid­er­ably lesser than the con­ven­tional meth­ods, and mod­i­fi­ca­tions can be en­tered in real time. This tech­nol­ogy, Min­istry says, elim­i­nates

30 per cent of the fab­ric waste seen dur­ing typ­i­cal cut-and-sew con­struc­tion.

Gi­han Amarasiri­war­dena, Min­istry of Sup­ply’s Chief De­sign Of­fi­cer, stated, “The lack of seams makes cloth­ing more durable, be­cause seams are typ­i­cally the place where wear and tear first ap­pear.”

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