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To tell if a jacket is fused, just pinch a piece of the cloth from the chest area between your fingers. Roll it around a little to make sure you've grabbed the thinnest amount possible and don't have a hold of more than one layer.

Then do the same with the sleeve or back panel. If the two areas are the same thickness (ie; nothing fused to the chest), then you have a canvassed coat. If the chest feels thicker and firmer, you've got a fused coat. A canvassed coat should have a distinctly different middle layer - the "floating" canvas.

If the sleeve or back is thicker than the chest, then you have a really serious problem! [:0]
 

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Alex, I just ordered a MTM shirt and was offered a choice between a fused collar and a "patch-fused" collar. Patch-fusing was described to me as fusing in strips rather than fusing the entire collar. Patch-fusing is allegedly superior because it allows the fabric to adjust some without puckering when the collar shrinks. To quote the name of the party game: fact or cr*p?

Best regards,
thinman
 

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How do the patches run - horizontally or vertically?

quote:Originally posted by thinman

Alex, I just ordered a MTM shirt and was offered a choice between a fused collar and a "patch-fused" collar. Patch-fusing was described to me as fusing in strips rather than fusing the entire collar. Patch-fusing is allegedly superior because it allows the fabric to adjust some without puckering when the collar shrinks. To quote the name of the party game: fact or cr*p?

Best regards,
thinman
 

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quote:Originally posted by Cantabrigian

How do the patches run - horizontally or vertically?

quote:Originally posted by thinman

Alex, I just ordered a MTM shirt and was offered a choice between a fused collar and a "patch-fused" collar. Patch-fusing was described to me as fusing in strips rather than fusing the entire collar. Patch-fusing is allegedly superior because it allows the fabric to adjust some without puckering when the collar shrinks. To quote the name of the party game: fact or cr*p?

Best regards,
thinman
Good question. I was under the impression they ran vertically, along the short length of the collar, which didn't make sense to me. I need to pick up an altered suit tomorrow, so I'll ask.

Best regards,
thinman
 

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quote:Originally posted by thinman

Good question. I was under the impression they ran vertically, along the short length of the collar, which didn't make sense to me. I need to pick up an altered suit tomorrow, so I'll ask.
It would be interesting to see how it turns out - seems like having part fused and part not would lead to islands of puffiness amidst an otherwise smooth sea of fusing. But for all I know, it could be the greatest thing ever.
 

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Can someone give me an overview of lining and fusing in shirts?
Here's a start from www.britannica.com:
Manufacturers of tailored garments use interlinings made of resin-treated viscose rayon. Today fusible interlinings and various washable synthetics are widely used. The performance of a garment is greatly influenced by such factors as the interlining used and the sewing threads employed.
So are some interlinings better than others? Do forum members here have any opinions on different types of interlinings?

How is "the performance of a garment greatly influenced by such factors as the interlining used and the sewin threads employed"?
 

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Kabbaz might be able to answer these questions.
Indeed he can.



The Fused versus Traditional Collar.
a] Style: A properly fused collar is always 'flat'. A traditional collar is, no matter how accomplished the ironer, always a bit 'wavy'. There are those who like to think that the 'wavy' appearance is more traditional. They are entirely correct. A cobblestone street is also more traditional than an asphalt one. Upon which would you rather drive for eight hours? In the arena of styling, therefore, neither fused or traditional methods are 'better'. Preference here is strictly in the eye of the wearer. In my case, I lean towards fused for my dress shirts and traditional for casual or sport shirts.
b] Construction: Without boring you with hours of technical details, the fused collar is much, much more difficult to properly construct than a traditional one. However, it is easier to improperly construct a fused collar than a traditional one. The reasons for these seeming contradictions are many; understanding can be accomplished only by in-person observation.
c] A poorly constructed traditional collar will always remain exactly as poorly constructed as it was in the first place.
d] A poorly constructed fused collar will get worse continuously throughout its life. A few of the major pitfalls include continuous shrinkage, debonding between the shell fabric and interlining resulting in bubbles in the shell fabric, and debonding of multiple inner layers of interlining resulting in non-removable ridges.
e] The majority of fused collars were, during the 1980's and 1990's, poorly constructed. Though the percentage of more appropriately fused collars seems to be on the increase, there is no way other than reputation to judge fusing quality prior to multiple launderings.
f] To the skilled maker, there are a myriad of additional styling options and wonderful construction features available only through the use of a fused collar.
g] A Footnote: Fusing other parts of the shirt is always questionable. The fused component of the collar (the 'leaf') does not touch the skin and is therefore not the part that gets a 'ring around the collar'. The 'ring' affects the non-fused collar band. This is important because soil removal from fused parts is more difficult. For this reason, fusing folding French cuffs is a terrible idea. Fusing is fine for button cuffs as the fused side does not come in contact with the skin. However, button cuffs are commonly used for casual or sport shirts which, in my opinion, are preferably made with the more wavy, loose, traditional methods.


The Fusing Process
I have been asked to describe the fusing process. Fusing is a process involving the use of high temperature (approximately 155 degrees Centigrade) and high pressure (approximately 35 pounds per square inch) which causes the shell fabric (cotton shirting) to adhere to the interlining. The adhesion is provided by a polyamide adhesive. Polyamide adhesive is a type of plastic. In the actual process the cut collar shaped cloth, interlining, and its coating of adhesive are sandwiched together. They are then heated to the specified temperature. When the specified temperature is achieved, the high pressure is applied uniformly to the three part sandwich for a short period of time which varies from 12 to 18 seconds. The pressure is then removed and the sandwich allowed to cool. The resulting collar exterior is now flat and somewhat "hard". It then returns to the normal shirtmaking processes, is made into a collar, and attached to the shirt as any traditional construction might dictate. The polyamide bond is permanent as long as it is not again heated above 150 degrees Centigrade. In the vast majority of commercial operations, this fusing process is accomplished in a fusing machine which contains a heat tunnel through which passes a conveyor belt. The sandwich is placed on the conveyor belt, proceeds through the heat tunnel, and is then run in-between two high pressure rollers. It then continues out the far side of the machine while cooling. The problem with this process is that plastic or a plastic bond, if in motion while cooling, becomes weak.


A conveyor belt, due to the nature of its operation, is not a flat path but instead a series of waves caused by the underlying rollers. Thus, when the collar is cooling as it moves out of the tunnel, it is not only in forward motion but also undergoing the bending motion provided by the wave characteristics of the belt's rollers. My determination (back in 1982 as previously detailed) was that I needed a machine which would keep the collar/polyamide/interlining sandwich stationery during the cooling process. If you look carefully at the machine, you will see a large aluminum plate suspended from springs. This is the heat surface. The collar sandwich is inserted on a flat metal plate underneath the heat surface where it is then allowed to achieve the necessary temperature. At that time, the 12 ton hydraulic jack you see at the top forces the heat plate down onto the collar sandwich. After the required dwell time, the heating surface raises off of the now fused collar. The metal plate is then withdrawn and its contents allowed to rest motionless until they return to room temperature. Hence, the collar remains perfectly stationary on a stable surface while the bond is drying. This results in the strongest possible bond. Theory is wonderful; product testing reality. Prior to releasing any of the fused collars to my clients, I tested the machine and the resulting products for a period of 18 months. I have one of the original collars I fused back in 1984 on a pink broadcloth shirt. It has been laundered more than 250 times, which is completely unprovable, and I keep it here for all who might be interested in seeing it. The collar began at exactly 16.5 inches in size and is now 16.25 inches in size.
 

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Properly Fusing a collar costs me more ... much more ... than making an unfused collar. It lays flatter, lasts longer, and looks crisper. Fusing coats or shirt cuffs & center plackets can be another matter entirely.


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Mr. K appears to be indicating that fused shirt cuffs and center plackets may be a bad idea as opposed to just fusing the shirt collar. Why is this?
 

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I would appreciate it if some members posted some example pictures of shirts with and without fusing. For example:

* a shirt with a fused collar -vs- a shirt without a fused collar.
* a shirt with fused cuffs and center placket
* a shirt with fusing done poorly
* a shirt with fusing done well
* a shirt without fusing that would somehow benefit from fusing and why
 

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Mr. K appears to be indicating that fused shirt cuffs and center plackets may be a bad idea as opposed to just fusing the shirt collar. Why is this?
The collar leaf does not touch the skin. Only the collar band does. Fused shirt parts should not touch the skin. The are hard and can irritate.

Additionaly, it is more difficult to remove 'ring around the ___" soil from fused parts. Ring around the cuff - especially that created by gold or silver jewelry, is one of the hardest types of soil to remove; doubly difficult if the cuff is fused.

The 'fused look' is something which lends itself well to a certain type of collar; i.e.: the strong, confident, "in-charge" power look. It does not make a good casual or roll button-down collar.

In sum, the ability to properly fuse should be one of the tools in a shirtmaker's kit. It should not be the only tool nor should it always be the first choice.

None of the above applies to mass-made products where fusing is a cost-saving tool in the bean-counters' toolkits, not a device for enhancing a product.
 

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I would appreciate it if some members posted some example pictures of shirts with and without fusing. For example:

* a shirt with a fused collar -vs- a shirt without a fused collar.
* a shirt with fused cuffs and center placket
* a shirt with fusing done poorly
* a shirt with fusing done well
* a shirt without fusing that would somehow benefit from fusing and why
I guess that I am asking this because I recently had a shirt custom made and the top of the placket doesn't open up and hold its shape like I would expect it to. The top just sort of lays flat and doesn't really open very much. If I put my fingers in between both sides of the placket and try to open the placket up then the placket folds and doubles over on itself on both sides. I think that I may have seen this behavior with a Jos A. Bank shirt several years ago and maybe with a shirt that I was given as a gift several years ago that was made in Italy in what appeared to be a true Italian style.

So does the problem here appear to be lack of placket fusing or maybe just lack of placket interlining? The style that I am describing is probably well suited for shirts that are always worn with the top button buttoned but I don't wear a tie. I have only encountered this placket style on very rare occasions so I was not really expecting to have this placket style on my shirt when I went to the tailor for my second fitting.

Is there a name for this particular style? I'd like to be able to tell my tailor that I don't want this particular style and I'd like to be able to ask him for the opposite style if the opposite style has a name.
 

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private message said:
I was just reading with much interest your old post about fused and traditional collar types. I do not seem to recall actually seeing an unfused collar with interlining. Are traditional collars ever done with interlining? If not, why not?
All collars are made with interlining. The is the "stiffener" which makes the collar harder than the shirt. Interlinings come in many varieties:

Non-woven: A paper-like substance. Cheap.

Woven: In many grades from soft to stiff and in many price categories from cheap to very expensive.

Non-woven fusible: A paper-like substance with some kind of glue. Cheap.

Woven fusible: In many grades from soft to stiff and in many price categories from cheap to very expensive. The expensive uses a very high-grade high-temperature high-pressure polyamide molecular bonding agent. The cheap uses ... some kind of glue.
 

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All collars are made with interlining. The is the "stiffener" which makes the collar harder than the shirt. Interlinings come in many varieties:

Non-woven: A paper-like substance. Cheap.

Woven: In many grades from soft to stiff and in many price categories from cheap to very expensive.

Non-woven fusible: A paper-like substance with some kind of glue. Cheap.

Woven fusible: In many grades from soft to stiff and in many price categories from cheap to very expensive. The expensive uses a very high-grade high-temperature high-pressure polyamide molecular bonding agent. The cheap uses ... some kind of glue.
OK - So all collars are made with interlining. Are all plackets generally made with interlining as well?

Based on your post, it sounds like I should always request a woven interlining. Are there any specific types of woven interlinings that I should request or try to avoid?
 

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That's not what I said (are you a logical positivist?). It's not because I saw one black raven that therefore all ravens are black. Nevertheless, I have two Hugo Boss suits ruined due to bubbling and that's enough empiricial evidence for me to conclude that fusing is bad and more likely to bubble than canvassed coats.
With respect, that's what you did say. In fact just because you had two Hugo Boss suits that bubbled you know conclude that all fused suits are likely to bubble. I actually think the way they are dry cleaned has a lot to do with how they look after cleaning.
 

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OK - So all collars are made with interlining. Are all plackets generally made with interlining as well?

Based on your post, it sounds like I should always request a woven interlining. Are there any specific types of woven interlinings that I should request or try to avoid?
Most firms make top center plackets with interlining; some do not.

As for requesting "types" of woven interlinings - it is not likely to be your choice. Woven interlinings range in price from under $1 per yard to $30-40 per yard. It is unlikely that your maker will stock any outside the quality/price range in which the firm trades.

I have a bunch of Mercer shirts and it sure feels like there is no interlining at all in the collar or cuffs, but rather two pieces of the shirt cloth sewn together.
This is almost never done for the interior seaming will show through. There may be 3 shirt fabric pieces sewn together or a very soft interlining - neither of which are acceptable in a dress shirt. Or it may have a very soft piece of non-woven fusible interlining which you probably won't be able to feel.

If you really want to know, wait until the shirts are in the discard pile and then cut the collar open.
 
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