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Keeping It All Together(HKTDC Fashion - Fabrics & Accessories, Vol 02,2008)

Yarns & Threads

Dor Tak Thread Mfg Ltd's high-quality 100% spun polyester sewing thread is available as cones, spools or kits

A stitch in time certainly saves nine when it comes to the yarns and threads behind fine fashions

Quality counts and nowhere more so than the highly competitive world of fashion and accessories, where consumers are increasingly concerned about value for money.

Manufacturers the world over know that yarns and threads sourced from Hong Kong offer the quality and reliability that ensures their fashion products won't fall apart after a season.

For example, the Dor Tak brand is synonymous with high-quality 100% spun polyester sewing thread and embroidery thread for global importers and wholesalers.

Dor Tak Thread Mfg Ltd has been supplying finished cones, tube spools, retail spools and sewing kits, either under its Dor Tak brand or on OEM terms, for more than 20 years.

"Our strength lies in our streamlined production processes, and we also have an advantage with our machinery," claims Marketing Manager Eva Chan, who adds that quality is also a major selling point. "Customers have tried to buy from China, but they end up coming back to us because our quality is reliable."

About 90% of sales are 100% spun polyester, with garment factories the main buyers of cones and tube spools and the 5,000-yard cone the most popular item, while the 1,000-yard size is the best-selling tube spool.

Retail spools in 200-yard lengths appear in department stores and supermarkets. "Spools are our most popular product because our delivery time is very fast," Ms Chan says. "One TEU or FEU contains more than 500 colours and can be delivered in 30 days."

All yarns are azo dye-free, and have passed ISO standard tests for colour fastness and strength, according to Ms Chan, who notes that Dor Tak offers 600 colours in its catalogue and will wind thread to order. "Yarn can also be dyed to a customer's specifications, for no extra charge," she adds.

Another popular item is a household sewing kit comprising a 22.5x14x12.5cm PP carrying case with a three-compartment insert tray, five spools of navy blue, white, black, red and brown 100% spun polyester thread, a measuring tape, a seam ripper, sewing needles and a pin cushion. "It comes in a colour choice of blue, pink or yellow, and costs about US$2 per set FOB Hong Kong," Ms Chan advises.

Diversifying into the specialist production of metallic thread has proved a winning strategy for Hua Hao Thread Fty, whose primary product up until 2007 had been its Hua Hao-brand polyester filament thread.

According to Marketing Officer Kenneth Chau, the TokyoTex- brand metallic thread was launched last year in response to customer enquiries for the new yarn, and now makes up 40% of sales.

"Metallic thread appeared as a fashion trend in Europe and Japan in 2006, mainly as embroidery and stitching for garments, and when a customer asked about this item it started us thinking about diversifying our product line," explains Mr Chau.

Metallic thread is harder to produce than regular thread, requiring a special twisting machine to apply a metallic film cover around a polyester filament.

"Bigger factories don't want to invest in the machinery to build up a new production line, but it suited us because we are not so big," says Mr Chau, adding that the company operates a 100-worker factory in Guangdong Province.

There is a choice of 50 colours in the TokyoTex line and some 500-plus shades for the Hua Hao polyester filament, with TokyoTex prices ranging from HK$38-88 for a 500 metre- or 1,000-metre roll, based upon thread thickness. "Our Hua Hao prices are HK$12-15 per roll, which range from 300 metres up to 2,300 metres in size, FOB Hong Kong or China," Mr Chau says.

Hua Hao meets Oeko-Tex standards and has 10,000 rolls of TokyoTex and 300,000 rolls of Hau Hao thread in stock. "We are very efficient and can ship orders within one week," claims Mr Chau.

Focusing on offering top-quality raw white and optical white yarn and sewing thread in 100% spun polyester and 100% core spun polyester is Shui Lam (Int'l) Textiles Enterprises Ltd, which has been selling under its SL brand since 1990.

Its customers, ranging from agents to direct users such as garment factories, can be found worldwide, including the Middle East, Asia, South America and Europe.

"Our fibre is directly imported from the Teijin Fiber factory in Thailand, which is known as the best producer of textiles in the world," claims marketing department spokesman Berry Pang.

He says Shui Lam provides good-quality product and good service, and all its products are tested according to Oeko-Tex Standard 100. "Customers nowadays are looking for materials that are environmentally friendly, and safe for humans - especially babies," Mr Pang observes.

The firm's raw white and optical white sewing thread yarn is produced from high-tenacity, low-elongation polyester fibre that promises low shrinkage, good strength and uniform quality.

The core spun thread line is made with an extremely tough polyester filament core, coated with polyester or cotton staple that provides strength and softness for stitching purposes.

It seems that top-quality yarn and thread produced by Hong Kong manufacturers is helping the world's fashion and accessories sector keep it all together.


Fast Facts

Dor Tak Thread Mfg Ltd
Flat 4, 8/F, Blk B
Po Yip Bldg
62-70 Texaco Rd
Tsuen Wan, New Territories
Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2413-7066
Fax: 852-2615-9678
Web: www.dortak.com
Year Established: 1986
Major Product Categories: polyester sewing thread, sewing kits
Own Brands & Certificates: Dor Tak
Minimum Order: -
Monthly Production: -
Delivery Time: 30 days
Factory Size & Location: 60,000 square feet; Jiangmen
Workforce: 150
Hua Hao Thread Fty
Shop 10, G/F
Nam Cheong Centre
81-95 Nam Cheong St
Sham Shui Po, Kowloon
Hong Kong
Tel: 852-3187-7185
Fax: 852-3586-2196
Web: www.huahaothread.com
Year Established: 1992
Major Product Categories: yarn/thread twisting and weaving
Own Brands & Certificates: TokyoTex
Minimum Order: -
Monthly Production: 100 tons
Delivery Time: -
Factory Size & Location: 10,000 square metres; Dongguan
Workforce: 120
Hung Fat Thread Fty Ltd
Flat D, 5/F
Kaming Fty Bldg
688-690 Castle Peak Rd
Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2785-3207
Fax: 852-2785-5559
Web: www.hungfat.com.hk
Year Established: 1986
Major Product Categories: 100% spun polyester sewing thread
Own Brands & Certificates: Oeko-Tex certificate
Minimum Order: 10,000 cones for export
Monthly Production: 400,000 cones
Delivery Time: 2 weeks
Factory Size & Location: 15,000 square feet
Workforce: -
In-growth Trading Co
Rm 801
Po Hong Centre
2 Wang Tung St
Kowloon Bay, Kowloon
Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2757-1516
Fax: 852-2754-5746
Year Established: 2003
Major Product Categories: normal yarn to fancy yarn, arcylic to cashmere yarn
Own Brands & Certificates: -
Minimum Order: 10 lbs for sampling, 500 lbs for bulk
Monthly Production: 100,000 kgs (model camel)
Delivery Time: 14-30 days
Factory Size & Location: 100,000 square metres; Hangzhou, Shandong, Guangdong
Workforce: 400-500
Shui Lam (Int'l) Textiles
Enterprises Ltd
Unit 5, 3/F
Hong Kong Worsted Mills Ind Bldg
31-39 Wo Tong Tsui St
Kwai Hing, New Territories
Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2426-7383
Fax: 852-2426-1337
Web: www.shuilam.com
Year Established: 1990
Major Product Categories: 100% spun polyester and 100% core spun polyester sewing thread yarns
Own Brands & Certificates: SL
Minimum Order: 3,000 kgs (each count/yarn 1,000 kgs)
Monthly Production: 800-1,000 tons
Delivery Time: 25 days
Factory Size & Location: 180,000 square metres; Tianjin
Workforce: 1,800-2,000
Spark Thread (HK) Ltd
Rms F& G, 3/F
Kai Fung Bldg
189-205 Queen's Rd Central
Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2602-3870
Fax: 852-2602-3375
Web: www.hk-spark.com
Year Established: 2000
Major Product Categories: thread
Own Brands & Certificates: ISO 9001, ISO 14001, Oeko-Tex standard 100
Minimum Order: -
Monthly Production: -
Delivery Time: 30 days
Factory Size & Location: Sichuan
Workforce: -