In India the knitwear industry after struggling for many years is according to many experts preparing to take off. The industry could become another lucrative outlet for the fashion industry of India. It is not surprising that the knitwear industry is gaining prominence in India as India has a history of a rich industry for textiles and fashion. Today there are over 30 knitwear companies of significance in India. These companies produce garments that meet international standards through their own work as well as through assistance provided by the International Wool Secretariat.
The garment industry utilizes two types of wool for the most part. In India wool is imported from Australia or New Zealand to be used in the use of garments. Local wool is also used; however, this wool is much more coarse and unlikely to be used in garments. Australian or imported wool is used in the creation of shawls and garments while Indian wool is used for non-apparel items like carpets, upholstery, and blankets. The most common knitwear garment in India is the shawl. In India nearly 100 different varieties of wool are produced and it is not uncommon for these varieties to be blended with imported wool. Merino is the most commonly used variety of wool that is produced locally in India. It is also of note that before any of the wool can be used it must first be prepared through different steps such as removing grease.
Not only are there different types of wool to be used in knitwear garments but a variety of colours are also available. Different colours represent different things within India and it is common to use and wear different colours at different times of the day. Due to the fact that knitwear is produced in a variety of colours like other clothing styles there is opportunity for it to fade into and out of style. The most common knitted garments are shawls and scarves. In India it has also been considered to blend cotton and wool to make knitwear garments more affordable.
Today there is a global market for hand knitwear products; however, most of this international market remains untapped by India. India is not currently a large exporter of knitwear garments; rather the country focuses on its domestic market. India has great potential to expand into the global knitwear market as its products are competitive particularly from a price standpoint. As time continues to progress India is continuing to learn to keep up with and compete with the international market. The domestic market for knitwear items is particularly strong in the local regions of Northern India due to the weather that is experienced there. Items are often purchased locally at markets or handmade at home while the international market relies on online purchases.