Knitwear has grown into a revolutionary industry of fashionable knit that has been classified within the high fashion category. By 20th century, the knitwear industry became part of the mainstream fashion due to smart garments and fashion knitwear. This led to the introduction of knitwear such as cardigans, jersey dresses, and jumpers, which made knitwear a fashionable, practical, and stylish choice for both women and men (Foster, 2016). The selection of knitwear fashion has been influenced by sex, age, and taste differences. Globally, there has been a rise in the demand for knitwear products due to the increase in fashionable knitwear.
The shift of consumers to high performance and lightweight knitwear has fueled the demand for knitted garments. Over the past few years, the fashion and apparel industry has been witnessing increased growth in the demand for cardigans, loop stitch jackets, scarfs, and large shawls. The demand for feather-light knitted fabrics has increased the market demand due to its efficient breathability of the material (Foster, 2016). Additionally, 3D knitting machines have increased productivity, making the production process more efficient with better elasticity, more straightforward process, and low cost.
Knitwear has demonstrated over the years that it can swiftly adapt to change in many trends and demands. The style changes in knitwear are speedy as compared to textile industries. Innovations and technological developments over the past 20 years have led to higher production of knitted fashion products (Peterson, Larsson, Carlsson, and Andersson, 2008). Ideally, it is now possible to make complete knitted garments directly through the use of knitting machines without the post knitting processes such as sewing and cutting.
The fashion industry is facing lifestyle changes by the consumers since the consumer preferences are shifting towards comfortable, soft, and wrinkle-resistant textile. Lightweight knitted textile has held a significant market share in the fashion market. The shift in consumer preference will continue since the woven fabrics are replacing the bulked yarns. The increased importance of synthetic fibers in the apparel industry is expected to influence the growth of the market and consumer lifestyle changes. Relatively, technological development will continue to expand the production of knitted garments and fuel segment growth.
The changes in knitted garments that the fashion industry should look forward to seamless knitting technology and growth in artificial intelligence. Growth in artificial intelligence in the fabric manufacturing process is expected to expand production, improve production efficiencies, and quality control. Seamless knitting technologies will offer more significant potential in production with a wide variety (Ray, 2012). These machines will potentially create made to measure and custom garments.
The seamless technology will reduce material waste and manufacturing processes. Therefore, it is possible to turn yarn into complete garments within a few minutes, thus saving on time and cost with quick response and high productivity. Additionally, these machines and technologies are expected to continue, with each piece remaining consistent. The demand for knitted garments is also anticipated to increase in the next few years due to homogenous, creative, and consistent product quality.
In conclusion, the evolution and development of knitted technology have led to fashionable knits that have been on demand over the years. The changes in innovations and design capability, as well as the quick set up of the knitting machines, has improved the productivity and increased design flexibility. Consumers value feel, quality, fit and customized clothing which will be facilitated by seamless knitting technology.