How your clothes are made! ǀ Quality clothes ǀ Justine Leconte


Hi everyone it’s Justine. You know how
clothes are made right? But do you really know the entire process? For
instance this here is a blue knitted turtleneck sweater what you can’t see is
that it’s made in Peru in alpaca. An alpaca like this absolute sweetness
right here this is the fluffiest thing I’ve ever touched angora cats do not
even come close problem this little alpaca has short
white hairs while my blue sweater is made out of one single long thread so
how do we go from the alpaca to the finished garment earlier this year I had
the chance of traveling to Peru where I could learn more about how garments are
made both by hand and by machine there are not many countries in the world that
still make fabric by hunt Peru is one of these countries and they
have incredible know-how transmitted across centuries in this video I’d like
to show you how much more work goes into a garment than what you might think 🙂 The
story of my sweater starts with an alpaca. Alpacas produce between 3
and 3.5 kilos of hairs per year they get a haircut once a year and
it takes a year to grow back they are other animals whose hairs are also used
to make fabric alpacas have three cousins llama guanaco and vicuna. LLamas
have rather coarse and stiff hairs alpacas are softer, vicunas have the
softest hairs aka the most expensive hairs: all four live in South America
llamas are mostly in Bolivia alpacas mostly in Peru (these two are
domesticated) and then guanaco and vicunas are wild and endangered if you
see them enjoy the moment but then leave them alone 🙂 in case you wonder about
other types of wool: cashmere and mohair come from goats camel hair and yak hair
is also used but less often regular wool mostly used comes from regular ships in
Peru the hairs are still mostly collected by hand it’s a very manual
process and that’s important: technically no
animal has to suffer for wool to be collected and there are certifications
and labels to prove you the origin and to prove that the animals were treated
ethically during the process. If you’re interested in this topic, which matters a
lot to me, I will put further information in the description for you. back to my
alpacas peruanos 🙂 they come in multiple different colors again look at
that fluff there are 32 natural colors ranging from beige and light grey to
dark brown and dark grey the first task after collecting the hairs is to group
it kind of by color then the hairs that are too damaged
or that are tangled with twigs or anything get sorted out manually you end
up with these piles of hairs of one color at this point it’s really dressed
on fools you can’t make fabric without cotton is the same when you collect
cotton from a cotton flower like this what you get is bits and pieces it needs
more work before it’s an actual thread the only natural fiber that comes out
directly as a filament is silk and do you know baby alpaca means that’s
something I actually got wrong this entire time I learned something new
listen when it’s a hundred percent baby alpaca it doesn’t mean the first haircut
of a young girl pakka who would have guessed it actually means the hairs from
the area under the belly because they’re the hair is softer than the back or the
neck that gets rain and dust and dirt all year when they’re talking about the
first haircut a young alpaca ever gets it’s actually called super baby and it’s
even softer and more expensive than what you would think now let’s turn these
hairs into thread the first machine sorts out the crazy fibers and the dust
that are left after the manual process then the hairs are washed and moved
around in the large bath the next one is a carding machine it detangles cleans
even more and starts intertwining the fibers in preparation for the spinning
process cotton it’s exactly the same process these fibers go through two
wheels that twist them together even more see how it now comes out in longer
strums then the hairs are combed in a giant comping machine that one is a
circular one the next one prepares balls of affixed weights of twelve kilos the
big balls all turn into finer bobbins we’re
getting closer and from the bobbins the hairs are spun together that is now
officially a thread it is spun fiber the hairs have been twisted so many times in
the process that now they constitute one long and clean thread that you can
actually make fabric with once you have the thread you can either knit it or
weave it this is a flatbed knitting machine the parent piece coming out at
the bottom that you see is flat you would do the same for all the pieces of
the garment and then sew the pieces together but there are also circular
knitting machines where the output is already a 3d garment and this is a
weaving loom again an old one the woven fabric comes out here in large rolls
wrapped around these wooden cylinders nowadays both knitting and weaving
machines can be programmed automated to produce any pattern you want it’s super
streamlined there are no mistakes anymore
see this blue sweater is technically perfect it even has a different color
detail around the armholes it’s a very complex knit actually it is completely
machine knitted this blanket is also made of alpaca but woven by a machine
that’s why the pattern is absolutely regular contrary to the knitting process
that only needs one thread going back and forth making loops the weeding
process needs two threads you have the warp threads vertical on the loom
going like this and then the weft threads go across so above under above
under the next row goes under above under above and so on it has to be very
tight in order to not loosen up over time because it needs to be done super
tightly Han weaving takes a long time example this is a belt that I bought
from a grandma in Paris Sacred Valley here the work should look at it
actually the work is the length and the weft threads are going across like this
this is the front side this is the back side and when you whip with patterns the
back side will be different most of the time to get enough tension during the
weaving process they will tie one end of the belt to a tree a pillar whatever and
they will tie the other end to their waists then they will sit on the floor
like make it tight poo-goh go too deep and as the bell grows and they have more
length they will sit back and sit back and sit back and at the end you have a
belt you know it’s handmade when there are little mistakes if you look at the
repeats of the pattern you will see for instance here or here little
irregularities if you go to a handcraft market somewhere in the world look at
the mistakes look at the fabric close up and that will tell you whether it’s
really Han made don’t trust the seller check this is one long thin surface a
belt but if you want to make larger surfaces in weaving you will have to use
not two pillars to get tension but for a manual Lu looks like this you have a
pillar in every corner they use pieces of wood to keep the work flat as they go
you see and to prevent the threads from tangling because the patterns are quite
complex on these looms you see that the work threads determine the dominant
stripe colors what about colors we haven’t talked about colors yet for over
a thousand years and then people have been masters not only in textile making
and pattern design but also in coloring they learned to make incredible natural
dyes from stones woods plants here are examples of materials and the colors
that they produce would you have guessed that such intense colors would come out
of ingredients that all seem to range between beige and brown this is a series
of colored threads tied naturally no matter which ingredient you start with
it has to be grinded into powder pigment then the powder is cooked together with
the fibers in a pot for two hours and boom you get a colorful thread I want to
show you the most beautiful and colorful handmade fabrics I’ve ever seen in Lima
I went to the Amanda Museum their textile collection is fabulous this is a
little divinity over 500 years old now you know that the handwork is done just
the embroidery itself but also the woven fabric underneath it bell pieces look at
the intensity of that naturally dyed pink and how tight the weave is hard
work in these samples the level of handcraft is so high it is hard to
actually find irregularities even it’s super satisfying to look at fabrics
knowing the amount of work behind each piece. I guess the thing that impressed
me the most in that process was to see how the Peruvian culture, beliefs and
history got woven or knitted into the fabric: all patterns tell a story in Peru
and I found that super impressive because it was kind of their main means
of expression while Europeans at the same time were rather using painting… so
I made it my goal to use the time that I so happen to have on my hands right
now to improve my fine art skills. You might know Skillshare already: it’s an
online community where you can learn skills from iPhone photography to
creative writing or how to start a YouTube channel. That one is taught by
Sorelle Amore who does a great job here on YouTube and also happens to be a
talented photographer. Basically Skillshare has classes about anything
you always wanted to get into. The way it works is subscription-based,
it costs under $10 a month for illimited access, and for the first 500 of my
subscribers who register, Skillshare is offering a 2-month free trial. To get it,
you need to register through the special link that I put in the description, down
below. And in case you wonder which courses I picked: creating patterns in
Adobe Illustrator and also hand lettering for beginners and ink drawing.
These are manual and/or therapeutic things that you can do indoor 🙂 If you
learn something that you didn’t know in this video: thumbs up, thank you very much!!
This trip to Peru was highly inspiring I’m thankful that I was allowed to film
there to be able to make this video. I sincerely hope that you
enjoyed it. I feel like this year is a pattern year, the runways have been
showing more patterns more prints and more colors than in previous seasons. If
you haven’t watched my video on spring/summer fashion trends yet, I will
link it here in the corner (on the “i” card) as well as down below for you. If you’re
subscribed to this channel, I will see you on Wednesday for a new video. Until
then take care, bye!

100 thoughts on “How your clothes are made! ǀ Quality clothes ǀ Justine Leconte

  1. It's always interesting to watch your videos although my only connection to clothes is that I wear them. Carry on the good work 👍

  2. The designs, knit and weave quality are so beautiful! These are definitely quality investment pieces which is where I would rather put my money. Especially since the farms you highlighted are certified ethical and humane.

  3. Love this!! Can you recommend a website that sells quality clothes made from alpaca? I live in Denmark and love sweaters, but find it hard to figure out where to buy them in a good quality. Thank again..:-)

  4. We enjoyed a few weeks in Peru and loved the people and the beautiful garments they wore. Tried so many medicinal plants and teas. Brought back alpaca wool, and purchased a few handwoven pieces. Loved Machu Picchu and the Sacred Valley.

  5. This video is a work of art! You were absolutely glowing because you were so interested and passionate about these pieces. You showed so much knowledge and respect for the people and the art of Peru. You are amazing and that totally shined through in this video.

  6. YouTubers like yourself have influenced my understanding of fast fashion. I see myself gravitating towards more ethical brands and handloom fabrics so thank you! 😀

  7. Thumbs Up Thumbs UP Thumbs Up.
    I think all cultures have these rare and difficult skills passed on by generations …
    Here, in India , many are getting extint 🙁
    And we the educated pride over our certifications …. this is so humbling …
    Thank you Justine.
    looking forward to your videos as always .

  8. Wow, Justine! That was incredibly interesting. Thank you so much for sharing what you learned and showing the fantastic processes! I certainly enjoy your channel and share it all the time. Thank YOU

  9. Your Spanish is beautiful Justine. I wish I can speak French as nicely as you do Spanish. Saludos desde México ♥️🇲🇽

  10. This is so interesting, thank you ❤

    Would you consider doing a video on fabrics that have been made from recycled/repurposed materials. Cupro is one, I think.
    It'd be really interesting to know what's out there in terms of environmentally friendly options.

    Edit to add: Why is it that we don't see fabrics like Tencel, which is, as far as I know rather low impact in its production, not used in regular fashion more often?
    It's a great fabric, wears well and yet you hardly ever see it being used on a broader scale in ready to wear.

  11. I went straight to Skill Share, found my desired class (advanced sewing) and will report whether it was satisfactory or not. This is the best time to delve into this labour intensive hobby. Thank you very much !

  12. We went to Peru last year and to Amano museum as well. It was so impressive!! Thank you for the video, it has aroused fantastic memories:)

  13. I thoroughly enjoyed this unique and inspiring content Justine! The process is so complicated, no wonder alpaca products are expensive. The colour and workmanship of these historic patterns 😍😍 Does it make you want to do a Peruvian inspired collection? 😉

  14. This is so interesting! Great video as per Justine 🙂 I worked in the retail section of a luxury Cashmere yarn factory in my town, it was a fascinating process seeing the sacks of 'cashmere fluff' from Mongolia come into the factory and leave as beautiful coloured cones (most we produced were for Chanel and other top designers). The manufacturing of wools and yarns is such a complex process and quality depends on so many factors. The only reason we had the factory in our town was because of the water quality – the dye would colour the fibres much more consistently with the water in my region! Looks like you had a super time in Peru, take care 🙂

  15. Thank you. The hand woven clothes looks a better quality than what we wear today. Excellent video.👍👍👍

  16. That was the fruit of the cotton plant complete with seeds, not a flower. The flower is rather large and short lived thing. The flowers bloom in early summer and drop off after rather quickly and the bolls take the flowers place. They are green and tightly closed at this point. They do not contain fibers at this point. The bolls open and turn brown in the fall. The cotton fibers are very soft and white at this point. Being left out in the rain at this point, discolor the fibers. The seeds have to be removed and the fibers are combed before it is spun to make a smother thread. The fields in my area look like they are covered with snow before the cotton is picked.

  17. Justine, you are the best. Your videos are truly a light in these dark days. I’m glad you got to cuddle some gorgeous alpacas on your adventure! You stay safe too.

  18. I agree there are painless ways for us to harvest the hair but the big question is do we have the right to keep these animals as prisoners and steal their hair?

  19. question : why is it that wools are boiled in the dying process etc, but if we wash them in hot water they shrink? and then continue to shrink?

    on another note, I really want a pet alpaca 😍

  20. This is a little off topic but where is your blanket from? It's amazing. I've been searching for a blanket like that for a long time :))

  21. My dad is from Peru (we live in the Netherlands)! Thank you for showcasing the tradition, I've always loved alpaca wool and alpacas 🙂

  22. So inforamative and flufff video(go alpacas). I am trained in traditional ukrainian weaving. And what i can say – most of handcraft ethnic garmets have a lot of similarities all around the world.

  23. While I appreciate the time and effort you put into making all your videos…I find your fashion videos most engaging because of their unique depth and insight, you also seem to come from a different internal space…more heart based than head based

  24. Hi Justine! You can also be Interested in Turkish rug motifs. They all are different, with all different meanings behind them. Check out, i bet you Will be surprised!

  25. Justine I love your videos, they are so informative. You might love to come to 'Yeola' district of Maharashtra, India where traditional 'Paithani' sarees are woven. The way to differentiate between a handwoven Paithani Saree and a machine made saree is, if the inner side of the Saree has uneven threads, it means it is hand woven and if both the sides of the Saree are even then it is machine made. 🙂 Stay Home Stay Safe.

  26. Wow Justine, I'm from Perú and it's a honor that you made a video about Alpaca garment creation. Your videos are so helpful and interesting. Thanks to upload such a good stuff. I wish you the best for your chanel. Stay so talented as you are. 😊

  27. Wow! I "kinda" knew how clothes were made, but for me, seeing the process is way faster learning than reading about it. I also learned so much about the hair/fiber. I love that there are vendors/makers using humane practices, and look forward to owning such a fine garment! Thanks for the trial to skill share as well! Looking forward to checking it out!

  28. Merci Justine, thank you for another instructional video, I learned something new today, so proud of my country. I hope you enjoy the Peruvian cuisine like ceviche, papa a la huancaina, jalea and my favorite olluquito.

  29. Very interesting, thank you. I would also like to see a video on assembling and finishing knitted garments. I was taught by my mother many years ago that pieced and sewn knitted garments are very inferior to fully-fashioned ones. My experience seems to back that up; I only see full-fashioning above a certain price level. Could you share your expertise on this?

  30. Thank you for your video and all of the information. Wonderful to have something positive to listen to and think about other than……

  31. I really like this video! Could also make more videos about different yarns and fabrics and how to recognize good fabrics? I used to buy cheap clothes, that wouldn't last long. Now I'd like to know which fabrics and techniques make good quality pieces 🙂

  32. Great vidio Justine. A lot good information so interesting it is helpful to see the process I love some of my coszy sweatesrs, but it makes them that more special when you take pause to think about the work invoved .a breath of freash air watching your vidio. thanks for takeing the time to post.

  33. What an interesting video, thank you! I went to Peru in the late seventies and bought back some fabrics but I did not see the process….what a treat…

  34. ohh! Justine, that's soo inspiring and lovely… I would love to go to Bolivia or Peru and do a course there with the weavers. So good you did this. x from Belfast

  35. Justine is that rare, classy and graceful lady that charms everyone in the room with her poise and natural beauty. One of the v few people in the world whose mannerisms I try to emulate 💖 My favorite YouTuber and fashion guru✨

  36. Thank you for all you share. I must say, I am specilally gratefull for this video…You inspired me, ideas, ideas, ( not gonna tell might be too silly :)) Gratefully, much love from Serbia💞🍀🕊

  37. Hello Justine, Yes! it matters to me how the animals are treated ….I would love to wear a sweater that comes from such "sweetness" I want to wear sweetness…..that makes me happy! Thank you!

  38. Hi Justine! I'm from argentina and my aunt works dyeing and threading different wools. It's wonderful to see people valuing the craft as often it doesn't happen here unfortunately. This is her working with an electrical spinning wheel her husband built for her 🙂 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AUVCAef2TfY

  39. As a Fiber Artist (I weave, dye fiber, spin, knit, felt etc all by hand), you get a big thumbs up from me 😊👍🏻

  40. What a wonderful video! If you are more interested in the process of thread making you can watch Fleece and Harmony. They have a sheep farm and make their own yarns and here on YouTube they show the whole process in detail. I think it's very interesting.
    By the way: there is no "regular sheep" 🙂 but so many different breeds and their wool is entirely different from breed to breed.

  41. If you start to think what amount of work really goes into making a simple cotton fabric you'll be amazed. Cotton is grown, it's harvested, cleaned, carded, combed and finally spun into thread. Then the loom is set up for the weaving and the fabric is woven. After all that you have is a simple white cotton fabric. Even if you count the time only starting from the cotton harvesting, it takes hours and hours and hours to get to this point, even today with all our machinery. How long would it take if you were to do it by hand? I can't even start to guess.

  42. Where does the "ethics" stop in treating humans and animals? Would wool be ever ethical or acceptable if it would be collected from kindergarden children?

  43. oh those alpacas are tooooooooo cute!!! I love their wool because it is hypo allergenic; people with sensitivities to wool or who have eczema and psoriasis can wear alpaca. Thank you so much Justine for a delightful video! i too have a new appreciation for Peruvian fabric. I realy enjoyed it 🙂

  44. As a home sewist, I know quite a bit about fabric, but realize that many people don't. Please, consider adding more videos about the origins of clothing materials. We need to keep spreading the ideas that fast fashion is wasteful. Real clothes are worth their higher price and last longer. Also shoes. Does anyone really think that a $20 pair from a big box store will be comfortable and last more then a few wearings?

  45. One of my friends is from Peru! I love how bright and beautiful the colors of their textiles are. Lovely video, Justine! Stay safe and well. 🥰

  46. Sorry to say, the full length commercial you insert into the middle of your presentation is grasping and rude.

  47. I bought an Alpaca poncho with a hood hand made and fully lined from Peru free trade for only $99.00 It is my favorite garment now! Thanks for the great video, you always inspire me.

  48. Yay!!! can´t believe you came to Perú!!! I moved to Perú about a year ago (even got the same baby alpaca blanket LOL), BTW… do those alpacas suffer when they get their hair cut? I know you said they didn't but I was mostly expecting to see smiling alpacas getting a buzz than how the actual machines are… anyway, GREAT video as always!!!

  49. I highly recommend going to Uzbekistan to see our hand made silk production . It's amazing , fully natural and organic. My aunty does silk carpets , it's absolutely mesmerizing

  50. My husband's cousin owns an alpaca farm. Alpaca wool is the softest anywhere! They have knitters that they pay to hand make items for a shop on their property & on etsy.

  51. Justine you just earn a massive, a massive minus for saying that angora cats fluffiness can't stand comparison with Alpaca 😤😤😤

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