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1st June 2008, Manchester & Leicester, UK

Fast fashion gets Wholegarment treatment in UK


The UK’s fast fashion knitwear manufacturing sector is investing in Shima Seiki Wholegarment machinery to reduce labour costs, beat skilled labour shortages and provide retailers with high quality garments with short lead times from a UK manufacturing base.

Two closely linked companies, B.S. Attwall & Co Ltd of Leicester and Viva Knitwear of Manchester have both recently invested in Shima New SWG-V machines in 5 and 7 gauges. In addition, B.S, Attwall has also invested in Shima’s four needle bed SWG-X in 12 gauge and a group of Shima’s new ‘Wide gauge’ machines for versatile production of shaped knitwear. B.S. Attwall is believed to have purchased a total of 36 Wholegarment machines and Viva Knitwear a total of 18 machines.

Both companies supply UK fast fashion retailers such as New Look and Jane Norman with low priced womens fashion knitwear. B.S. Attwall, a long established manufacturer and wholesaler of fashion knitwear was one of the first companies in UK to invest in Shima Seiki machines back in the 1980s. The investment in SEC technology was followed by further investment in SES technology in the 1990s.

Viva Knitwear is a sister company to Britannia Knitwear, a well known manufacturer of low price fast fashion knitwear, also with an industry history dating back to the 1980s. Viva Knitwear was founded earlier this year to produce 100% Wholegarment knitwear and moved into new premises in March. The company is planning to expand its Wholegarment plant once it has established its market and got to grips with the technology.

Both the B.S. Attwall and Viva Knitwear projects are being supported technically by Shima Seiki Europe Ltd’s Castle Donnington, Derbyshire office.

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