Liquid Assets


T
he birth of a new product often involves collaboration among various parties in the
production chain, from upstream suppliers that develop materials for downstream uses to marketers
who recognize coming trends. One such product is Ge-Ray Fabrics Inc.’s Liquidity®, a new knitted
fabric line made from microdenier nylon feeder yarn specially developed by BASF Corp. and textured
using Unifi Inc.’s Novva™ process.

 

“Liquidity is a brand-new concept,” said Debra Cobb, merchandising director for Ge-Ray, New
York City. “Ge-Ray has developed an entire group of fabrics for sportswear and fashion apparel,
swimwear, and intimate apparel. We also see it eventually in activewear, because we are seeing
activewear-influenced styling in next Spring’s fashions — silk shorts, for example. The hallmarks
of Liquidity are its subtle luster and silky hand (because it is microdenier nylon) — and you can
wash it.” According to Ge-Ray, the fabrics also offer affordable sophistication when compared with
high-end silk jerseys.

Unifi’s Novva texturing process gives subtle luster to bright nylon or polyester yarns and
allows them to remain bright — an unusual feat, according to Kim Lewis, Greensboro, N.C.-based
Unifi’s director of marketing.

On first seeing the Novva yarns, Cobb recognized their unique, trendsetting possibilities
and began working with Unifi and Charlotte-based BASF to come up with a yarn engineered
specifically to meet Ge-Ray’s specifications for use in the new fabric. Development occurred over
several months, and Liquidity was launched last spring.

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The Liquidity® fabric line includes nylon/Lycra® jerseys and ribbed knits, as well as
100-percent nylon interlock knits.


A Magical Process


Cobb described the Novva process as ”magical,” adding, “We like it on bright nylon because
it allows textured brightness without losing the luster. The Novva process enables us to get the
dyeing results we are looking for.

“We work closely with yarn spinners to keep up with new developments. Our strength is in
taking new products and creating brands,” Cobb continued.

A vertical operation, Ge-Ray purchases the yarn and knits the fabric, then dyes and finishes
it. “Ge-Ray does a big business in nylon — we are very familiar with what it can do,” Cobb added.

Cobb said apparel makers are currently sampling Liquidity. Fabrics include jerseys and
ribbed knits in a range of weights and containing various amounts of Lycra®, and 100-percent nylon
interlock knits. Ge-Ray also will produce fabrics according to customer specifications.


For more information about Liquidity®, contact Debra Cobb (212) 869-3400.




November 2002
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