Regular knitting machines have two needle beds. View a simulation of a whole garment knitting machine with 4 needle beds above. The turqouise threads show the first rows of a garment being knitted.
It starts with a CAD file...
All of Deta’s pieces are knitted in a factory in Brooklyn, NY. Our knitting process stands in contrast to how most swimwear is produced. The usual method for swimwear is cut-and-sew - a process that is exactly what it sounds like, where pieces are cut from fabric and then sewn together via machine. Deta, on the other hand, knits pieces directly from just two threads of yarn (and one thread of elastic)! While there is a certain simplicity and purity to this process, it is very complex: the process for making pieces is programmed in CAD software and sent to a knitting machine that outputs the near-final product in a single pass. We can use exactly the amount of yarn needed for the piece, with no scraps going into the garbage. Deta is constantly searching for more sustainable fabrics that perform well in swimwear. The image shows the CAD file of the Nicola Top.
...and continues with knitting
Knitting a triangle top takes about 33 min. It is knitted all in one without any seams. The knitting works like a 3D printer. After knitting the excess threads are cut off and the tops are washed and steamed to keep a nice form.