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Flannel shirts include clothes that are very easy to find everyday in the market. These clothes are now used by various walks of life of all ages. The main feature of the flannel shirt is the plaid pattern. In Wales, farmers use flannel for work activities. In the late 1600s, flannel, which was previously worn by farmers, was later in demand by various working classes, as quoted from the Bespoke Post. Towards the end of the 17th century, textile workers in Wales took advantage of the excess wool to make durable fabrics through a carding process.

The cloth spread through trade, until it was produced by textile mills in England and France. During the heyday of the British manufacturing industry, flannel was produced in abundance. Flannel is in demand by textile factory and mining workers.

In 1889, flannel began to be produced in Detroit, United States, when a businessman Hamilton Carhartt took the initiative to make clothes for workers. The product came after he spoke with railroad workers to design clothes that were deemed necessary, as quoted from Carhartt's website.

The Bespoke Post also reported that flannel was in high demand among construction workers, loggers and border guards. The clothing is also associated with a symbol of American male toughness, because flannel is often worn by people who do heavy work.

In the 1990s, flannel became increasingly popular, because it was synonymous with grunge music. The top musician at that time was Kurt Cobain, Nirvana's vocalist and guitarist. Cobain often wore flannels when he appeared on stage. Grunge music fans also follow their idol's style of appearance. At that time, flannel was no longer in demand because of its material elements, but had grown to be stylish and self-expression.