Apparel group Perry Ellis International Inc will debut the revolutionary new Dow XLA elastic fibre in its spring 2004 Perry Ellis Sportswear and Perry Ellis Portfolio shirt collections.

The fibre, developed by Dow Fibre Solutions, allows garments to be engineered to retain their original shape and size after repeated launderings.

It is also heat and chemical resistant, and in cotton garments can offer sufficient stretch without compromising on a soft, natural feel.

As such, the new shirt ranges provide enhanced freedom-of-movement and require low maintenance, according to Perry Ellis creative director Jerry Kaye.

"Perry Ellis has always been committed to cutting edge menswear and we're excited to bring our shirting to the next level," Kaye said.

"We were amazed to see how the feel and drape of the rich cotton fabrics we selected were enhanced by the addition of Dow XLA fibre.

"Furthermore, the fiber adds the move-with-you stretch and low maintenance care that our customer is seeking."