Glossary of Fabric & Textile Terms

App for Fabric Glossary

AbsorbencyThe ability of a fabric to take in moisture.
AcetateAcetate is a synthetic fiber formed by compound of cellulose, refined from cotton linters and/or wood pulp, and acedic acid that has been extruded through a spinneret and then hardened.
AcrylicAcrylic fiber is a synthetic polymer fiber that contains at least 85% acrylonitrile.
Aida clothAida cloth is a coarse open-weave fabric traditionally used for cross-stitch.
AlnageAlnage is the official supervision of the shape and quality of manufactured woolen cloth.
AlpacaAlpaca is a name given to two distinct things: The wool of the Peruvian alpaca. A style of fabric originally made from alpaca fiber but now frequently made from a similar type of fiber.
AngoraAngora refers to the hair of the Angora rabbit, or the fabric made from Angora rabbit fur. (Fabric made from angora goat is mohair.)
Antique SatinA reversible satin-weave fabric with satin floats on the technical face and surface slubs on the technical back created by using slub-filling yarns. It is usually used with the technical back as the right side for drapery fabrics and often made of a blend of fibers.
AppliquéAppliqué is a sewing technique in which fabric shapes, lace or trim, are sewn onto a foundation fabric to create designs.
AramidAramid fiber is a fire-resistant and strong synthetic fiber.
ArgyleAn argyle pattern is one containing diamonds in a sort of diagonal checkerboard pattern.
Backstrap loomBackstrap looms, as the name implies, are tied around the weaver’s waist on one end and around a stationary object such as a tree, post, or door on the other. Tension can be adjusted simply by leaning back. Backstrap looms are very portable, since they can simply be rolled up and carried.
BaizeBaize is a coarse woollen or cotton cloth, often coloured red or green.
Ballistic nylonBallistic nylon is a thick, tough synthetic fabric used for a variety of applications.
Bamboo FabricBamboo fabric is a natural textile made from the pulp of the bamboo grass. Bamboo fabric has been growing in popularity because it has many unique properties and is more sustainable than most textile fibers. Bamboo fabric is light and strong, has excellent wicking properties, and is to some extent antibacterial.
BaratheaBarathea is an indistinct twill or broken rib – usually a twilled hopsack weave – with a fine textured, slightly pebbled surface. Often of silk or silk blended with wool, used for neckties, women’s fine suits and coats, men’s and women’s evening wear.
BarkclothA textured woven, usually printed cotton fabric that was popular in the 30s-40s and 50s as an interiors fabric. The prints were often large vines, leaves and florals.
Basket WeaveA distinctive technique of weaving that creates a fabric resembling basket work with interwoven fibers. Basketweave fabric is most common in home décor fabrics.
BatikBatik is an Indonesian traditional word and refers to a generic wax-resist dyeing technique used on fabric.
BatisteA lightweight, plain weave fabric, semi-sheer and usually made of cotton or cotton blends. Appropriate for heirloom sewing, baby clothes and lingerie.
Bedford cordBedford cord is a combination of two kinds of weave, namely plain and drill. It is a durable fabric that is often used in upholstery or outerwear.
BembergCommonly used for lining suits and coats, bemberg is a type of rayon fabric often used as a cost-effective substitute to silk.
BengalineA fabric with a crosswise rib made from textile fibers (as rayon, nylon, cotton, or wool) often in combination.
BiasThe bias direction of a piece of woven fabric, usually referred to simply as “the bias”, is at 45 degrees to its warp and weft threads. Every piece of woven fabric has two biases, perpendicular to each other.
BindingIn sewing, binding is used as both a noun and a verb to refer to finishing a seam or hem of a garment, usually by rolling or pressing then stitching on an edging or trim.
BlackoutA type of fabric that is commonly used for drapery, this fabric has the distinctive quality of blocking light, and comes in two forms: 2-pass and 3-pass. Two-pass has two “passes” of foam on a fabric, which means the black layer of foam will be visible. 3-pass has two layers of white and one layer of black foam. Three-pass can also be used as an upholstery fabric, as the black layer is not visible. Blackout fabrics can also be insulating and noise-dampening.
BlendA blend is a fabric or yarn made up of more than one type of fiber.
BobbinA bobbin is a spindle or cylinder, with or without flanges, on which wire, yarn, thread or film is wound.
Bobbin laceBobbin lace is a delicate lace that uses wound spools of thread (the bobbins) to weave together the shapes in the lace.
BobbinetBobbinet is a tulle netting with hexagonal shaped holes, traditionally used as a base for embroidery and lingerie.
Boiled WoolFelted knitted wool, it offers the flexibility of a knit with great warmth. Create your own by washing double the needed amount of 100% wool jersey in hot water and drying in a hot dryer. Expect 50% shrinkage. Appropriate for jackets, vests and stuffed animals.
BombazineBombazine is a fabric originally made of silk or silk and wool, and now also made of cotton and wool or of wool alone. It is twilled or corded and used for dress-material.
BoucleA knit or woven fabric with small curls or loops that create a nubby surface. The fabric has a looped, knotted surface and is often used in sweater looks, vests and coats.
BraidTo braid is to interweave or twine three or more separate strands of one or more materials in a diagonally overlapping pattern.
BroadclothBroadcloth is a dense, plain woven cloth, historically made of wool. The defining characteristic of Broadcloth is not its finished width, but the fact that it was woven much wider (typically 50 – 75% wider than its finished width) and then heavily milled (traditionally the cloth was worked by heavy wooden trip hammers in hot soapy water in order to shrink it) in order to reduce it to the required width. The effect of the milling process is to draw the yarns much closer together than could be achieved in the loom and allow the individual fibres of the wool to bind together in a felting process. This results in a dense, blind face cloth with a stiff drape which is highly weather-resistant, hard wearing and capable of taking a cut edge without the need for being hemmed.
BrocadeForming patterns in cloth with a supplementary weft.
BuckramBuckram is a stiff cloth, made of cotton or linen, which is used to cover, and protect, a book, and although more expensive than its lookalike, Brella, is stronger and resistant to cockroaches eating it. Buckram can also be used to stiffen clothes.
BurlapBurlap is a North American term for a type of cloth often used for sacks in the UK the equivalent nomecture is Hessian.
Burn-out VelvetCreated from two different fibers, the velvet is removed with chemicals in a pattern leaving the backing fabric intact. Appropriate for more unconstructed and loosely fit garments.
CalicoCalico is a type of fabric made from unbleached, and often not fully processed, cotton. Also referred to a type of Printing.
CambricCambric is a lightweight cotton cloth used as fabric for lace and needlework.
Camel’s HairA natural fiber obtained from the under-hair of the camel. It is relatively close to cashmere. Appropriate for coats and jackets. Very soft hand.
Camel’s HairCamel’s Hair is a natural fiber from the camel. Camel hair can produce a variety of different coarseness of yarn. This fiber is a novelty fiber spun by hand-spinners.
CanvasCanvas is an extremely heavy-duty fabric used for making sails, tents, marquees, and other functions where sturdiness is required. It is also popularly used on fashion handbags.
Canvas workCanvas work is embroidery on canvas.
CardingCarding is the processing of brushing raw or washed fibers to prepare them as textiles.
CarpetA carpet is any loom-woven, felted textile or grass floor covering.
CashmereCashmere is wool from the Cashmere goat.
CelluloseCellulose; this fiber processed to make cellophane and rayon, and more recently Modal, a textile derived from beechwood cellulose.
Chalk ClothA pliable fabric that can be used like a chalk board. Commonly used for tablecloths, posters, and projects, prime the fabric with chalk before using. To remove the chalk, wipe with a damp sponge.
ChallisA lightweight, soft plain weave fabric with a slightly brushed surface. The fabric is often printed, usually in a floral pattern. Challis is most often seen in fabrics made of cotton, wool, or rayon.
ChambrayA plain woven fabric that can be made from cotton, silk, or manufactured fibers, but is most commonly cotton. It incorporates a colored warp (often blue) and white filling yarns.
Chantilly laceThis lace has a net background, and the pattern is created by embroidering with thread and ribbon to create floral designs. The pattern has areas of design that are very dense, and the pattern is often outlined with heavier cords or threads.
Charm QuiltA quilt made of many, many small patches (traditionally 2″ or so) where each piece is a different fabric. The pattern is usually a one-patch design and often involves swaps and trades with friends to gather many fabrics.
CharmueseA luxurious, supple silky fabric with a shiny satin face and a dull back. Generally either silk, rayon ,or polyester. Suitable for blouses, fuller pants and lingerie.
Cheese ClothA lightweight, sheer, plain-woven fabric with a very soft texture. It may be natural colored, bleached, or dyed. It usually has a very low count. If dyed, it may be called bunting and could be used for flags or banners.
CheeseclothCheesecloth is a loosewoven cotton cloth, such as is used in pressing cheese curds.
ChenilleThe French word for caterpillar, this soft fabric is created by placing short pieces of yarns between core yarns and twisting the yarn together to make a fabric. This fabric is commonly used for baby items and in home décor fabrics.
ChevronLightweight, extremely sheer and airy fabric, containing highly twisted fibers. Suitable for full pants, loose tops or dresses.
ChiffonChiffon is a sheer fabric made of silk or rayon.
Chino clothChino cloth is a kind of twill fabric, usually made primarily from cotton.
ChintzChintz is calico cloth printed with flowers and other devices in different colors. It was originally of Eastern manufacture.
ChitePainted linens that originated in Chitta (India) in the 17th century.
CoirCoir is a coarse fibre extracted from the fibrous outer shell of a coconut.
Colorfast (Colourfast)Colors that will bleed or fade very easily from washing. Specifically, a textile’s ability to maintain its color without running or fading.
CordCord is twisted fibre, usually intermediate between rope and string. It is also used as a shortened form of corduroy.
CorduroyA fabric, usually made of cotton or a cotton blend, utilizing a cut-pile weave construction. The ”wale” indicates the number of cords in one inch. Suitable for jackets, pants and skirts.
CottonCotton is a soft fibre that grows around the seeds of the cotton plant, a shrub native to the tropical and subtropical regions of both the Old World and the New World. The fibre is most often spun into thread and used to make a soft, breathable textile.
CrashCrash is a rough fabric made from yarns that are usually undyed. The coarsest type is called Russian crash. Linen is generally used for the warp yarn, while linen and jute are used for the filler.
Crazy quiltCrazy quilting is the textile art of patchworking.
CrepeCrepe is a silk fabric of a gauzy texture, having a peculiar crisp or crimpy appearance.
Crepe CharmeuseA smooth, soft luster fabric of grenadine silk warp and filling, with latter given crepe twist. It has the body and drape of satin and is used for dresses and eveningwear.
Crepe de ChineSilk crepe de chine has a slightly crinkly surface create with highly twisted fibers. It comes in three weights: 2 ply, appropriate for blouses and lingerie; 3 ply, appropriate for dresses, fuller pants and dresses; and 4 ply, most luxurious and best for trousers and jackets.
Crepe-back SatinA satin fabric in which highly twisted yarns are used in the filling direction. The floating yarns are made with low twist and may be of either high or low luster. If the crepe effect is the right side of the fabric, the fabric is called satin-back crepe.
CrewelA true crewel fabric is embroidered with crewel yarn (a loosely twisted, two-ply wool) on a plain weave fabric. Traditional crewel fabrics are hand-woven and embroidered in India. The design motif for crewel work is typically outlines of flowers, vines, and leaves, in one or many colors. Modern weaving technology and inventive designers create traditional “crewel” looks with weave effects alone, without the use of embroidery.
CrinolineCrinoline was originally a stiff fabric with a weft of horse-hair and a warp of cotton or linen thread. The fabric first appeared around 1830.
CrochetThe process of creating fabric from a length of cord, yarn, or thread with a hooked tool.
Crochet hookA crochet hook is a type of needle, usually with a hook at one end, used to draw thread through knotted loops.
CrochetedLoose, open knit made by looping thread with a hooked needle. Used for light, summer sweaters.
Cro-hookThe cro-hook is a special double-ended crochet hook used to make double-sided crochet. Because the hook has two ends, two colours of thread can be handled at once and freely interchanged.
Cross-stitchCross-stitch is a popular form of counted-thread embroidery in which X-shaped stitches are used to form a picture.
DamaskDamask is a fabric of silk, wool, linen, cotton, or synthetic fibers, with a pattern formed by weaving. Today, it generally denotes a linen texture richly figured in the weaving with flowers, fruit, forms of animal life, and other types of ornament.
Darning mushroomA darning mushroom is a tool which can be used for darning clothes, particularly socks. The sock can be stretched over the top of the (curved) mushroom, and gathered tightly around the stalk.
DenimA twill weave cotton fabric made with different colored yarns in the warp and the weft. Due to the twill construction, one color predominates on the fabric surface. Suitable for pants, jackets and skirts. Pre-wash and dry 100% cotton denim at least twice to eliminate shrinkage and color bleeding.
DimityDimity is a lightweight, sheer cotton fabric having at least two warp threads thrown into relief to form fine cords.
DobbyA decorative weave, characterized by small figures, usually geometric, that are woven into the fabric structure.
Dobby loomDobby loom is a loom in which each harness can be manipulated individually. This is in contrast to a treadle loom, where the harnesses are attached to a number of different treadles depending on the weave structure.
DoeskinGenerally applied to fabric with a low nap that is brushed in one direction to create a soft suede-like hand on the fabric front. Great for tops, pants and fuller skirts.
Dotted SwissA lightweight, sheer cotton or cotton blend fabric with a small dot flock-like pattern either printed on the surface of the fabric, or woven into the fabric. End-uses for this fabric include blouses, dresses, baby clothes, and curtains.
Double ClothA fabric construction, in which two fabrics are woven on the loom at the same time, one on top of the other. In the weaving process, the two layers of woven fabric are held together using binder threads. The woven patterns in each layer of fabric can be similar or completely different.
Double KnitA weft knit fabric in which two layers of loops are formed that cannot be separated. A double knit machine, which has two complete sets of needles, is required for this construction.
Double RubDouble rubs measure a fabric’s abrasion resistance, determined by the Wyzenbeek test. Each “rub” is one back and forth pass over a stretched piece of fabric by a mechanical arm. The test is run until the fabric shows noticeable wear. Consider the double rub count when purchasing upholstery fabric for a high-traffic area in your home.
Double Sided Quilted CottonA fabric construction in which a layer of down or fiberfill is placed between two layers of fabric, and then held in place by stitching or sealing in a regular, consistent, all-over pattern on the goods.
Double weaveDouble weave is a type of advanced weave. It is done by interlacing two or more sets of warps with two or more sets of filling yarns.
DowlasDowlas is the name given to a plain cloth, similar to sheeting, but usually coarser.
DrillStrong, medium- to heavyweight, warp-faced, twill-weave fabric. It is usually a 2/1 left-handed twill and piece dyed.
DuckA tightly woven, heavy, plain-weave, bottom-weight fabric with a hard, durable finish. The fabric is usually made of cotton, and is widely used in men’s and women’s slacks, and children’s playclothes.
DupioniA crisp fabric with irregular slubs. It is perfect for tailored slimmer silhouettes like flat-front trousers, jackets and fitted blouses and dresses. Silk Dupioni can be machine washed in the gentle cycle and drip-dried.
Durabilityhow durable a fabric or yarn is.
Dye lotDye lot is a number that identifies yarns dyed in the same vat at the same time. Subtle differences can appear between different batches of the same color yarn from the same manufacturer.
DyesDye is used to color fabric. There are two main types: Natural dyes and synthetic dyes. The process is called dyeing.
EisengarnEisengarn, meaning “iron yarn” in English, is a light-reflecting, strong, waxed-cotton thread. It is made by soaking cotton threads in a starch, paraffin wax solution. The threads are then stretched and polished. The end result of the process is a lustrous, tear-resistant yarn which is extremely hardwearing. Invented in the 19th Century, it was further developed in 1927 by the textile designer Margaretha Reichardt at the Bauhaus for use on Marcel Breuer’s tubular-steel chairs.
ElasticityThe ability of a fiber or fabric to return to its original length, shape, or size immediately after the removal of stress.
EmbossingA calendering process in which fabrics are engraved with the use of heated rollers under pressure to produce a raised design on the fabric surface.
EmbroideryEmbroidery is an ancient variety of decorative needlework in which designs and pictures are created by stitching strands of some material on to a layer of another material. See also: Machine embroidery.
Ends per inch (EPI)Ends per inch like Threads per inch is a measure of the coarseness or fineness of fabric, displaying the number of (warp) threads per inch of woven fabric.
Epinglé fabricA type of velvet fabric woven on a wire loom or épinglé loom. The épinglé velvet is notable in that both a loop pile and a cut pile can be integrated into the same fabric. The art of épinglé weaving in Europe originated from Lucca (Italy) and later came to Venice and Genua, which is where the term Genua velvet comes from. The technique of épinglé weaving is still used today in the Flemish region of Kortrijk and Waregem. The fabric finds it application mostly in upholstery, although in medieval times it was used as apparel for princes and kings as well as for bishops, cardinals, and the Pope.
Epinglé loomA kind of weaving machine whereby steel rods are inserted in a top shed which is formed over the bottom shed in which the weft is inserted. The steel rods are inserted into the fabric every second or third pick by a separate mechanism that is synchronised with the weaving motion. The same mechanism also extracts the rods from the fabric . If the rod carries a cutting blade at the tip the warps that are woven over the rods are cut, creating a cut pile effect. In case the rod has no blade, then the warp ends from a loop pile. Alternating cut and loop wires create cut and loop pile in the fabric. This weaving technology is used for weaving velvets for furnishing and apparel applications. These fabrics are known as ‘moquette’ or “épinglé’ fabrics. This kind of weaving machine is also used for weaving carpets where it is known as a ‘Wilton loom’.
Even-weaveEven-weave or evenweave fabric is used in counted-thread embroidery and is characterized by Warp and weft threads of the same size.
EyeletGrommets and eyelets are metal, plastic, or rubber rings that are inserted into a hole made through another material. They may be used to reinforce the hole, to shield something from the sharp edges of the hole, or both.
FailleA glossy, soft, finely-ribbed, silk-like woven fabric made from cotton, silk, or manufactured fibers.
Fat QuarterA cut piece of fabric which is made by cutting a half yard in half again vertically. The piece is therefore approximately 18″ x 22″. This allows for cutting larger blocks than a standard quarter yard which is 9″ x 44″.
Faux FurArtificial fur made from synthetic material.
Faux LeatherA Simulated leather.
Faux SuedeLeather with a napped surface.
FeltFelt is a non-woven cloth that is produced by matting, condensing and pressing fibers. The fibers form the structure of the fabric.
FeltingThe process of making felt is called felting.
FiberFiber or fibre (see spelling differences) is a class of materials that are continuous filaments or are in discrete elongated pieces, similar to pieces of thread. Fibers are often used in the manufacture of other materials. They can be spun into filaments, thread, or rope. They can be used as a component of composite materials. They can also be matted into sheets to make products such as paper or felt.
FilamentA filament is a fine, thinly spun thread, fiber, or wire.
FinishingFinishing refers to any process performed on yarn or fabric after weaving to improve the look, performance, or “hand” (feel) of the finished textile.
FishnetFishnet is a material with an open, diamond shaped knit.
FlannelFlannel is a cloth that is commonly used to make clothing and bedsheets. It is usually made from either wool, wool and cotton, or wool and synthetic fabric.
FlaxFlax fiber is soft, lustrous and flexible. It is stronger than cotton fiber but less elastic. The best grades are used for linen fabrics such as damasks, lace and sheeting. Coarser grades are used for the manufacturing of twine and rope. Flex is a yarn which is the blend of mofre cotton & less linen . it is alternate quality for linen with linen look at cheaper price .
FleeceSynthetic knit fabric that stretches across the grain. Suitable for vests, jackets and tops.
FlockedA raised, often velveteen design added onto the surface of a fabric. Flocking adds interest and texture to fabric, and is most often featured on apparel and home décor fabrics.
FoulardA lightweight twill-weave fabric, made from filament yarns like silk, acetate, polyester, with a small all-over print pattern on a solid background. The fabric is often used in men’s ties.
French Terry KnitA thin piece of material put under another material to add color or brilliance.
FriezeFrieze is a coarse woollen cloth with a nap on one side, that was raised by scrubbing it to raise curls of fibre (French: frisé). In the 19th century rough cheap frieze was made of wool mixed with shoddy (see Shoddy).
FriezéA strong, durable, heavy-warp yarn pile fabric. The pile is made by the over-wire method to create a closed-loop pile.
FullingFulling is a step in clothmaking which involves the cleansing of cloth (particularly wool) to get rid of oils, dirt, and other impurities.
FustianA type of heavy twilled woven cotton fabrics, chiefly prepared for menswear. Usually dyed in a dark shade. Declined in popularity from 1813, being replaced by harder wearing and better quality wool cloths.
GabardineGabardine is a tough, tightly woven fabric often used to make suits, overcoats and trousers. The fibre used to make the fabric is traditionally worsted (a woolen yarn), but may also be cotton, synthetic or mixed. The fabric is smooth on one side and has a diagonally ribbed surface on the other.
GanteGante is a cloth made from cotton or tow warp and jute weft. It is largely used for bags for sugar and similar material, and has the appearance of a fine hessian cloth.
GaugeA gauge is a set number of rows per inch (in knitting) or the thread-count of a woven fabric that helps the knitter determine whether they have the right size knitting needles or a weaver if the cloth is tight enough.
GauzeA sheer, open-weave fabric usually cotton or silk. It is suitable for blouses, dresses and curtains.
Genova velvetA type of velvet where in Jacquard patterns are woven into the ground fabric and where the pile is made of a combination of cut and uncut (loop) pile. This fabric is also known as Venetian velvet, or more generally, as épinglé velvet. In the actual terminology of furnishing fabrics it is mostly named with its French name “velours de Gênes”.This kind of fabric is made on a wire loom or épinglé loom.
GeorgetteA drapey woven fabric created from highly twisted yarns creating a pebbly texture. It is semi-sheer and suitable for blouses, full pants and flowing dresses.
GeotextileA geotextile is a synthetic permeable textile.
GinghamGingham is a fabric made from dyed cotton yarn.
Glass fiber (fibre)Fiberglass is material made from extremely fine fibers of glass. It is widely used in the manufacture of insulation and textiles.
GossamerA gossamer is a very light, sheer, gauze-like fabric, popular for white wedding dresses and decorations.
GrogramGrogram is a coarse fabric of silk mixed with wool or with mohair and often stiffened with gum. It also is known as Grosgrain.
Grois PointA fabric which features large points of yarn on the surface of the fabric.
GrosgrainA tightly woven, firm, warp-faced fabric with heavy, round filling ribs created by a high-warp count and coarse filling yarns. Grosgrain can be woven as a narrow-ribbon or a fullwidth fabric.
HabotaiA soft, lightweight silk fabric, is heavier than China silk.
HatchiA lightweight sweater knit fabric that features a moderately loose weave and is most commonly used to create sweaters, cardigans, and tops.
HeatherA yarn that is spun using pre-dyed fibers. These fibers are blended together to give a particular look. (For example, black and white may be blended together to create a grey heathered yarn.) The term, heather, may also be used to describe the fabric made from heathered yarns.
HeddleCommon component of a loom used to separate warp threads for passage of the weft. Commonly made of cord or wire.
HemTo hem a piece of cloth (in sewing), a garment worker folds up a cut edge, folds it up again, and then sews it down. The process of hemming thus completely encloses the cut edge in cloth, so that it cannot ravel. A hem is also the edge of cloth hemmed in this manner.
HempThe main uses of hemp fibre are rope, sacking, carpet, nets and webbing. Hemp is also being used in increasing quantities in paper manufacturing. The cellulose content is about 70%.
HerringboneA variation on the twill weave construction in which the twill is reversed, or broken, at regular intervals, producing a zig-zag effect.
HomespunRefers to a coarse, plain weave fabric with a hand-woven look.
HoundstoothA variation on the twill weave construction in which a broken check effect is produced by a variation in the pattern of interlacing yarns, utilizing at least two different colored yarns.
HuckabackHuckaback is a type of coarse absorbent cotton or linen fabric used for making towels.
IkatIkat is a style of weaving that uses a tie-dye process on either the warp or weft before the threads are woven to create a pattern or design. A Double Ikat is when both the warp and the weft are tie-dyed before weaving.
ImberlineImberline is a woven fabric with various colored stripes in the warp, often separated by gold thread. The fabric is often used in upholstery and drapery manufacture.
IntarsiaIntarsia is a knitting technique used to create patterns with multiple colours.
InterfacingA type of material used on the unseen or “wrong” side of fabrics in sewing.
InterliningAn insulation, padding, or stiffening fabric, either sewn to the wrong side of the lining or the inner side of the outer shell fabric. The interlining is used primarily to provide warmth in coats, jackets, and outerwear.
Interlock KnitAlso known as T-shirt knit. It usually has stretch across the grain. Great for tops, skirts and lightweight pants.
Irish PoplinThere are two types of Irish poplin: (1) Originally a fabric constructed with silk warp and wool filling in plain weave with fine rib. (2) Fine linen or cotton shirting also made in Ireland. Sometimes used for neckwear.
ITY KnitITY stands for Interlock Twist Yarn and is a soft, lightweight, slinky knit fabric often used to create tops, skirts, dresses, and dancewear. This fabric is tightly woven and does not wrinkle easily.
JacquardA jacquard weave is created through a loom process, which is programmed to raise each warp thread independently of the other threads. The design of the jacquard fabric is incorporated into the weave, instead of being printed or dyed onto the fabric. The loom attachment allows a much more versatile weaving process and a higher level of control. The term “Jacquard” itself is after the inventor of the loom attachment that creates this added control, Joseph Marie Jacquard.This jacquard weave process is more time consuming and labor intensive than a basic weave. However, jacquard fabric is more stable and stretchy than fabrics created through the basic weave technique. Jacquard weaves can also be combined with various colors and types of threads. This provides beautiful and soft gradations of color tones and bold outlined patterns that are very complex, such as landscapes, portraits, and unique designs.
Jacquard loomThe Jacquard loom was the first machine to use punched cards. It uses punched cards to control the pattern being woven. It is a form of dobby loom, where individual harnesses can be raised and lowered independently.
JamdaniJamdani is a kind of fine cloth made in Bangladesh.
Jersey KnitUsually thinner or lighter-weight than Interlock knit with less stretch. It’s appropriate for tops and fuller dresses.
JuteJute is a long, soft, shiny plant fibre that can be spun into coarse, strong threads. Jute is one of the cheapest natural fibres, and is second only to cotton in amount produced and variety of uses. Jute fibres are composed primarily of the plant materials cellulose and lignin.
KapokA short, lightweight, cotton-like, vegetable fiber found in the seed pods of the Bombocaceae tree. Because of its brittle quality, it is generally not spun. However, its buoyancy and moisture resistance makes it ideal for use in cushions, mattresses, and life jackets.
KhakiA tan or dusty colored warp face twill, softer and finer than drill. Name derived from East India word meaning “earth color.” Fabric made of cotton, linen, wool, worsted, or manmade fibers and blends.
Knit FabricFabrics made from only one set of yarns, all running in the same direction. Some knits have their yarns running along the length of the fabric, while others have their yarns running across the width of the fabric. Knit fabrics are held together by looping the yarns around each other. Knitting creates ridges in the resulting fabric. Wales are the ridges that run lengthwise in the fabric; courses run crosswise.
Knit fabricsKnit fabrics are fabrics that were produced through the process of knitting.
Knit-de-knitA type of yarn texturizing in which a crimped yarn is made by knitting the yarn into a fabric, and then heat-setting the fabric. The yarn is then unraveled from the fabric and used in this permanently crinkled form.
KnittingKnitting is the Process of inter-looping of yarns or inter-meshing of loops
Knitting needle gaugeA knitting needle gauge is used to determine the size of a knitting needle. Some also double for crochet hooks. Most needles come with the size written on the needle, but many needles (like double-pointed needles) tend to not be labeled. Also, with wear and time the label often wears off. Needle gauges can be made of any material, and are often made for metal and plastic. They tend to be about 3 by 5 inches. They contain holes of various sizes, and often have a ruler along the edge for determining the gauge of a sample.
KoshiboA medium weight, woven, polyester fabric known for being colorfast, koshibo is suited for different types of apparel projects such as skirts, dresses, and blouses.
La CosteA double-knit fabric made with a combination of knit and tuck stitches to create a mesh-like appearance. It is often a cotton or cotton/polyester blend.
LaceLace-making is an ancient craft. A lace fabric is lightweight openwork fabric, patterned, either by machine or by hand, with open holes in the work. The holes can be formed via removal of threads or cloth from a previously woven fabric, but more often lace is built up from a single thread and the open spaces are created as part of the lace fabric.
LaméLamé is a type of brocaded clothing fabric with inwoven metal threads, typically of gold or silver, giving it a metallic sheen.
LaminateThis fabric is created by bonding a thin polymer film to cotton fabric. Laminated fabric is perfect for creating rainwear, linings, and table coverings.
LawnA light, fine cloth made using carded or combed, linen or cotton yarns. The fabric has a crease-resistant, crisp finish. Linen lawn is synonymous with handkerchief linen. Cotton lawn is a similar type of fabric, which can be white, solid colored, or printed.
LeatherAnimal skin dressed for use in clothing.
LinenLinen is a material made from the fibers of the flax plant. Linen produced in Ireland is called Irish linen. Linens are fabric household goods, such as pillowcases and towels.
LiningA material or substance that covers the inside surface of something.
LodenLoden is water-resistant material for clothing made from sheep wool.
Loden ClothA heavily fulled or felted fabric originating in Austrian Tyrol. Wool may be blended with camel hair or alpaca. Thick, soft, waterproof without chemical treatment. Sometimes given fine nap. Used for coats, sportswear.
LoomThe Loom is a machine used for weaving fabric.
LucetLucet is a method of cordmaking or braiding which is believed to date back to the Viking age. Lucet cord is square, strong, and slightly springy. It closely resembles knitted I-cord or the cord produced on a knitting spool. Lucet cord is formed by a series of loops, and will therefore unravel if cut.
LurexA fabric created from a yarn formed from synthetic film and includes a metallic layer that adds metallic features to fabrics.
LycraA DuPont trademark for its spandex fiber. Any time you see this fiber listed on a label, expect comfort, movement, and shape retention that won’t wash away.
MacraméMacrame or macramé is a form of textile-making using knotting rather than weaving or knitting. Its primary knots are the square knot and forms of hitching (full hitch and double half hitches).
MadrasA lightweight plain weave cotton fabric with a striped, plaid, or checked pattern. A true madras will bleed when washed. This type of fabric is usually imported from India. End-uses are men’s and women’s shirts and dresses.
MarabouA thrown silk usually dyed in the gum or a fabric made of this silk.
MatelasséA medium to heavyweight luxury fabric made in a double cloth construction to create a blistered or quilted surface. Common end-uses are upholstery, draperies, and evening dresses.
MeltonA heavyweight, dense, compacted, and tightly woven wool or wool blend fabric used mainly for coats.
Mercerized cottonMercerization is a treatment for cotton fabric and thread mostly employed to give cotton a lustrous appearance.
MerinoMerino is the Spanish name for a breed of sheep, and hence applied to a woolen fabric.
MeshA mesh is similar to fabric or a web in that it has many connected or weaved pieces. In clothing, a mesh is often defined as fabric that has a large number of closely spaced holes, such as is common practice for modern sports jerseys.
Metallic fiber (fibre)Metallic fibers are fibers used in textiles which are either composed of metal, or fibers of other materials with a metal coating. Their uses include decoration and the reduction of static electricity.
MicrofibersAn extremely fine synthetic fiber that can be woven into textiles with the texture and drape of natural-fiber cloth but with enhanced washability, breathability, and water repellancy.
Microfibre (fiber)Fibres with strands thinner than one denier. Fabrics made with microfibres are exceptionally soft and hold their shape well.
MillineryMillinery is women’s hats and other articles sold by a milliner, or the profession or business of designing, making, or selling hats for women.
MinkyA soft and fuzzy polyester fabric created to imitate the look of mink, Minky fabric is available in a variety of colors and prints, and is used for creating luxurious blankets and soft baby accessories.
MocadoMockado is a woollen pile fabric made in imitation of silk velvet.
ModalModal is a cellulose fiber made by spinning reconstituted cellulose from beech trees.
MohairMohair is a silk-like fabric made from the hair of the Angora goat. It is durable, light and warm, although some people find it uncomfortably itchy.
MoireeA corded fabric, usually made from silk or one of the manufactured fibers, which has a distinctive water-marked wavy pattern on the face of the fabric.
MoleskinIt resists wrinkling and has a beautiful sueded look on the face. The reverse has a satiny look and feel. Generally, will contain 2-4% spandex. Great for pants, jackets and heavy shirts.
Monk’s ClothA heavy weight cotton fabric utilizing the basket weave variation of the plain weave. Used for draperies and slip covers, monk’s cloth is an example of 4 x 4 basket weave. It has poor dimensional stability and tends to snag.
MungoFibrous woollen material generated from waste fabric, particularly tightly woven cloths and rags. See also: shoddy.
MuslinMuslin is a type of finely woven cotton fabric, introduced to Europe from the Middle East in the 17th century. It was named for the city where it was first made, Mosul in what is now Iraq.
NainsookNainsook is a fine, soft muslin fabric, often used to make babies clothing.
NapNap is the raised surface of certain cloth, such as flannel.
NappedNapped fabric has a surface texture with an added visual appeal, and is frequently featured in flannel, corduroy, velvet, and satin. The napped texture creates soft, heavy, and warm qualities, making it perfect for shirting, sleepwear, and baby blankets. Double napped fabrics are brushed on both sides, while single-napped is only brushed on one side. When sewing with fabrics with a distinct nap, be sure to allow for extra fabric, and lay all of your pattern pieces going in the same direction.
NeedlepointNeedlepoint is a form of canvas work created on a mesh canvas. The stitching threads used may be wool, silk, or rarely cotton. Stitches may be plain, covering just one mesh intersection with a single orientation, or fancy, such as Bargello. Plain stitches, known as Tent stitches, may be worked as basketweave or half cross.
NeedleworkNeedlework is another term for the handicraft of decorative sewing and textile arts. Anything that uses a needle for construction can be called needlework.
NetNet is a device made by fibers woven in a grid-like structure, as in fishing net, a soccer goal, a butterfly net, or the court divider in tennis
NettingRefers to any open-construction fabric whether it is created by weaving, knitting, knotting, or another method.
NoilNoil is a short fiber that is left over when combing longer fibers during textile production. Silk noil fabric is created from taking the leftover noils from spinning silk to create an overall raw silk fabric that features a gentle drape, slightly nubby, uneven texture, and dull surface. Noil fabric is perfect for creating loose-fitting jackets, skirts, dresses, and home décor accents.
Nonwoven fabricNon-woven textiles are those which are neither woven nor knit, for example felt. Non-wovens are typically not strong (unless reinforced by a backing), and do not stretch. They are cheap to manufacture.
Novelty yarnNovelty yarns include a wide variety of yarns made with unusual features, structure or fiber composition such as slubs, inclusions, metallic or synthetic fibers, laddering and varying thickness introduced during production. Some linens, wools to be woven into tweed, and the uneven filaments of some types of silk are allowed to retain their normal irregularities, producing the characteristic uneven surface of the finished fabric. Man-made fibres, which can be modified during production, are especially adaptable for special effects such as crimping and texturizing.
NylonNylon is a synthetic polymer, a plastic. Nylon fibres are used to make many synthetic fabrics and women’s stockings.
Oil clothOil cloth was, traditionally, heavy cotton or linen cloth with a linseed oil coating: it was semi-waterproof. The most familiar use was for brightly printed kitchen tablecloths.[12] Dull-colored oilcloth was used for bedrolls, sou’westers, and tents. By the late 1950s, oilcloth became a synonym for vinyl (polyvinyl chloride) bonded to either a flanneled cloth or a printed vinyl with a synthetic non-woven backing.
Oilclothsheetings or printcloth that are printed, bleached, or dyed, and given a special linseed oil and pigment preparation. Used for table coverings, waterproof outerwear; now largely replaced by plastic-coated and vinyl materials.
OilskinA Cotton linen, silk, or manmade material treated with linseed oil varnish for waterproofing. Used for rainwear.
OlefinA synthetic fiber made from polyolefin. This fabric is usually strong and colorfast, with a resistance to staining, mildew, abrasion, and sunlight.
Onion SkinA lightweight knit fabric that has a subtle pattern on the backing that resembles the appearance of an onion skin.
OrgandyOrgandy or organdie is the sheerest cotton cloth made. Combed yarns contribute to its appearance. Its sheerness and crispness are the result of an acid finish on greige (unbleached) lawn goods. Because of its stiffness and fiber content, it is very prone to wrinkling.
OrganicA crisp, sheer, lightweight plain weave fabric, with a medium to high yarn count, made of silk, rayon, nylon, or polyester.
OrganzaOrganza is a thin, plain weave, sheer fabric traditionally made from silk, the continuous filament of silkworms. Nowadays, though many organzas are woven with synthetic filament fibers such as polyester or nylon, the most luxurious organzas are still woven in silk.
OsnaburgA crisp, sheer, lightweight plain weave fabric, with a medium to high yarn count, made of silk, rayon, nylon, or polyester.
OttomanA heavy, plain weave fabric with wide, flat crosswise ribs that are larger and higher than in faille. It sometimes comes with alternating narrow and wide ribs. When made of narrow ribs only, it is called soleil. Warp may be silk or manmade fiber; filling may be cotton, silk, wool, or manmade fiber. Used for dress coats, suits, and trimmings.
OutdoorOutdoor fabric is used to recover cushions, pillows, create awnings, and more for spaces exposed to nature’s elements like the sun and rain. Created with polyester or acrylic fibers, outdoor fabric is durable, soil and stain resistant, and can be cleaned by wiping with a damp rag.
OxfordA fine, soft, lightweight woven cotton or blended with manufactured fibers in a 2 x 1 basket weave variation of the plain weave construction. The fabric is used primarily in shirtings.
Pack ClothA tear-drop shaped, fancy printed pattern, used in dresses, blouses, and men’s ties.
PaisleyPaisley is a droplet-shaped vegetal motif, similar to half of the T’ai Chi symbol, the Indian bodhi tree leaf, or the mango tree. The design originated in India and spread to Scotland when British soldiers brought home cashmere shawls.
PanelA panel is a cotton print that can be used for anything from quilt projects to aprons, doll clothes, or soft books. Most commonly used in quilting, panels feature a large design that is often featured in the center of a quilt, making it perfect for themed projects. Some panels also feature instructions and cut-outs for projects like an apron or book.
Panné SatinLightweight silk or manmade fiber satin fabric with very high luster achieved with aid of heavy roll pressure. Crushes easily. Used for eveningwear.
Panné VelvetA lustrous, lightweight velvet fabric, in which the pile has been flattened in one direction. Has good stretch across the grain. Appropriate for tops and dresses.
Pashmina””Pashmina”” is the fiber obtained from pasmina goats in kashmir region, used for winter clothes & shawls.
PatchworkPatchwork is a form of needlework or craft that involves sewing together small pieces of fabric and stitching them together into a larger design, which is then usually quilted, or else tied together with pieces of yarn at regular intervals, a practice known as tying. Patchwork is traditionally ‘pieced’ by hand, but modern quiltmakers often use a sewing machine instead.
PeachskinA soft fabric with a brushed texture similar to the skin of a peach on one side, with a good amount of drape. Peachskin is often used to create blouses, skirts, and dresses with a lining.
Peau de SoieA heavy twill weave drapeable satin fabric, made of silk or a manufactured fiber, and used for bridal gowns and eveningwear. Pima Cotton A type of cotton plant developed in the Southwestern USA from a cross between Egyptian and Uplands cotton which is longer in fiber length and more lustrous than most American cottons. It is used to weave some of the popular quilting fabrics which have a silk-like hand.
PercalePercale refers to a closely woven, high thread count, cotton fabric often used for sheets and clothing.
Persian weavePersian weave is a method of weave used in jewelry and other art forms.
PFDA fabric that is not sized or finished. PFD stand for “Prepared for Dyeing,” and is perfect apparel and quilting projects.
Pile knitA knit construction utilizing special yarn that is interloped into a standard knit base. Most often used in the formation of imitation fur fabrics, and special liners for cold weather clothing like jackets and coats.
Pile weavePile weave is a form of textile created by weaving. Pile fabrics used to be made on traditional hand weaving machines. The warp ends that are used for the formation of the pile are woven over metal rods or wires that are inserted in the shed (gap caused by raising alternate threads) during weaving. The pile ends lie in loops over the inserted rods. When a rod is extracted the pile ends remain as loops on top of the base fabric. The pile ends lying over the rod may be left as ‘loop pile’, or cut to form ‘cut pile’ or velvet.
Pile WireA steel rod which is inserted in between the base fabric and the pile ends in a pile fabric woven on a wire loom or épinglé loom. The height and thickness of the rod determine the size of the loop. A pile wire can be a simple rod – in which case the pile yarns will form a ‘loop’ pile. If the pile wire is equipped with a blade holder and cutting blade at the tip it will cut the pile loops during extraction thus producing cut pile.
PillA pill, colloquially known as a bobble, is a small ball of fibers that forms on a piece of cloth. ‘Pill’ is also a verb for the formation of such balls.
PincordA fabric similar in texture and appearance to corduroy with very fine raised stripes. Pincord fabric is most common in home décor and apparel projects.
PiquéA medium-weight cotton or cotton blend fabric with a pebbly weave that looks almost like a check. Suitable for vests, jackets and fitted blouses. Also used in children’s clothes.
PlaidFrom a Scots language word meaning blanket, plaid usually referring to patterned woollen cloth otherwise known as tartan.
Plain weavePlain weave (also called tabby weave, linen weave or taffeta weave) is the most basic of three fundamental types of textile weaves (along with satin weave and twill). It is strong and hard-wearing, used for fashion and furnishing fabrics.
Plied yarnPlied yarn is yarn that has been plied, with the process called plying.
PlisséA lightweight, plain weave, fabric, made from cotton, rayon, or acetate, and characterized by a puckered striped effect, usually in the warp direction. The crinkled effect is created through the application of a caustic soda solution, which shrinks the fabric in the areas of the fabric where it is applied. Plissé is similar in appearance to seersucker. End-uses include dresses, shirtings, pajamas, and bedspreads.
PlushPlush is a fabric having a cut nap or pile the same as fustian or velvet.
PointelleVery feminine, delicate-looking, rib-knit fabric made with a pattern of openings.
PolyesterA manufactured fiber introduced in the early 1950s, and is second only to cotton in worldwide use. Polyester has high strength (although somewhat lower than nylon), excellent resiliency, and high abrasion resistance. Low absorbency allows the fiber to dry quickly.
PoplinPoplin is a heavy, durable fabric that has a ribbed appearance. It is made with wool, cotton, silk, rayon, or any mixture of these. The ribs run across the fabric from selvage to selvage. They are formed by using coarse filling yarns in a plain weave.
PunchedA type of fabric structure that gives different holes or figured textures
Purl stitchA commonly used stitch in knitting.
QalamkariQalamkari is a type of hand-painted or block-printed textile, produced in various places in India.
QiviutQiviut is the wool of the musk ox.
QuatrefoilA fabric construction in which a layer of down or fiberfill is placed between two layers of fabric, and then held in place by stitching or sealing in a regular, consistent, all-over pattern on the goods.
QuiltQuilting is a method of sewing or tying two layers of cloth with a layer of insulating batting in between. A bed covering or similar large rectangular piece of quilting work is called a quilt.
RamieA bast fiber, similar to flax, taken from the stalk of a plant grown in China.
Raschel KnitA warp knitted fabric in which the resulting knit fabric resembles hand crocheted fabrics, lace fabrics, and nettings. Raschel warp knits contain inlaid connecting yarns in addition to columns of knit stitches.
RayonRayon is a transparent fibre made of processed cellulose. Cellulose fibres from wood or cotton are dissolved in alkali to make a solution called viscose, which is then extruded through a nozzle, or spinneret, into an acid bath to reconvert the viscose into cellulose. A similar process, using a slit instead of a hole, is used to make cellophane.
Rib knitIn knitting, ribbing is a pattern in which vertical stripes of stockinette stitch alternate with vertical stripes of reverse stockinette stitch. These two types of stripes may be separated by other stripes in which knit and purl stitches alternate vertically; such plissé stripes add width and depth to ribbing but not more elasticity.
Rib weaveOne of the plain weave variations, which is formed by using: 1) heavy yarns in the warp or filling direction, or 2) a substantially higher number of yarns per inch in one direction than in the other, or 3) several yarns grouped together as one. Rib fabrics are all characterized by having a slight ridge effect in one direction, usually the filling. Such fabrics may have problems with yarn slippage, abrasion resistance, and tear strength. Examples of this construction include broadcloth, poplin, taffeta, faille, shantung, and cord fabric.
Rip-Stop NylonA lightweight, wind resistant, and water resistant fabric. Appropriate for outdoor wear and equipment as well as outdoor flags.
RolagA rolag is a loose woolen roll of fibers that results from using handcards.
RovingA roving is a long rope of fibers where all of the fibers are going parallel to the roving.
RugA rug is a form of carpet. It is usually smaller than a carpet. See also: rug making
SailclothSailcloth encompasses a wide variety of materials that span those from natural fibers, such as flax (linen), hemp or cotton in various forms including canvas, to synthetic fibers, including nylon, polyester, aramids, and carbon fibers.
SateenSateen is a fabric formed with a satin weave where the floats are perpendicular to the selvage of the goods.
SatinA Satin is a cloth that typically has a glossy surface and a dull back. It is formed by a sequence of broken twill floats in either the warp or weft system, which respectively identify the goods as either a satin or a sateen.
Satin weaveA satin is a broken twill weaving technique that forms floats on one side of the fabric. If a satin is woven with the floats parallel to the selvedge of the goods, the corresponding fabric is termed a “satin.” If the floats are perpendicular to the selvedge of the goods, the fabric is termed a ‘sateen.'”
SeamA seam, in sewing, is the line where two pieces of fabric are held together by thread.
Seam ripperA seam ripper is a small tool used for unpicking stitches.
SeersuckerA fabric with a woven pucker, this fabric is traditionally cotton, but can be polyester. Suitable for shirts, casual slacks and children’s clothing.
Selvage or SelvedgeThe woven edge portion of a fabric parallel to the warp is called selvage.
SequinedOrnamented with a small plate of shining metal or plastic.
SergeSerge is a type of twill fabric that has diagonal lines or ridges on both sides, made with a two-up, two-down weave. The worsted variety is used in making military uniforms, suits, great and trench coats. Its counterpart, silk serge, is used for linings. French serge is a softer, finer variety. The word is also used for a high quality woolen woven.
SergingSerging is the binding off of an edge of cloth.
SewingSewing is an ancient craft involving the stitching of cloth, leather, animal skins, furs, or other materials, using needle and thread. Its use is nearly universal among human populations and dates back to Paleolithic times (30,000 BC). Sewing predates the weaving of cloth.
ShagShag (fabric) is typically used to make a deep-pile carpets. This is the oldest use of the term. Shag carpet is sometimes evoked as an example of the aesthetic from the culture of the U.S. 1970s. Also used to make carpets for mariners.
ShantungA medium-weight, plain weave fabric, characterized by a ribbed effect, resulting from slubbed yarns used in the warp or filling direction. End-uses include dresses and suits.
ShedIn weaving, the shed is the gap between yarns on a loom when one or more, but not all, of the harnesses are raised.
SheerAny very light-weight fabric (e.g., chiffon, georgette, voile, sheer crepe). Usually has an open weave. Sheers mostly feel cool.
ShoddyRecycled or remanufactured wool. Historically generated from loosely woven materials. Benjamin Law invented shoddy and mungo, as such, in England in 1813. He was the first to organise, on a larger scale, the activity of taking old clothes and grinding them down into a fibrous state that could be re-spun into yarn. The shoddy industry was centred on the towns of Batley, Morley, Dewsbury and Ossett in West Yorkshire, and concentrated on the recovery of wool from rags. The importance of the industry can be gauged by the fact that even in 1860 the town of Batley was producing over 7,000 tonnes of shoddy. At the time there were 80 firms employing a total of 550 people sorting the rags. These were then sold to shoddy manufacturers of which there were about 130 in the West Riding. Shoddy is inferior to the original wool; “shoddy” has come to mean “of poor quality” in general (not related to clothing), and the original meaning is largely obsolete.
ShotThe opal effect achieved on a fabric by dyeing the warp and weft threads different colours. The yarns are dyed first and then woven. When looking at the fabric from various angles it appears to alter in colour, this is more obvious in lustrous fabrics and more so in certain types of weaves.
ShuttleA shuttle in weaving is a device used with a loom that is thrown or passed back and forth between the threads of the warp to weave in the weft.
SilkSilk is a natural protein fiber that can be woven into textiles. It is obtained from the cocoon of the silkworm larva, in the process known as sericulture, which kills the larvae. The shimmering appearance for which it is prized comes from the fibre’s triangular prism-like structure, which allows silk cloth to refract incoming light at different angles.
SisalSisal or sisal hemp is an agave Agave sisalana that yields a stiff fiber used in making rope. (The term may refer either to the plant or the fiber, depending on context.) It is not really a variety of hemp, but named so because hemp was for centuries a major source for fiber, so other fibers were sometimes named after it.
SkeinSkein is when a length of yarn is bundled in a loose roll rather than put on a cone (as you would purchase from store)- usually done if yarn is going to a dye vat or needs a treatment in a manufacturing/knitting mill environment.
Slinky KnitIt drapes well, never wrinkles and washes beautifully. It’s the perfect travel fabric with four-way stretch for ultimate comfort. Suitable for almost any wardrobe item.
SlubIt drapes well, never wrinkles and washes beautifully. It’s the perfect travel fabric with four-way stretch for ultimate comfort. Suitable for almost any wardrobe item.
Solution-dyedSolution dyeing is a technique used to add color to synthetic fiber. There are many different methods used to dye carpet fibers, but essentially, they can be broken down into two categories: solution dyeing, and all other methods. I say this because solution dyeing is so different from all of the other methods that it truly is in a class of its own.
SpandexA manufactured elastomeric fiber that can be repeatedly stretched over 500% without breaking, and will still recover to its original length.
Spandex fibreSpandex or elastane is a synthetic fibre known for its exceptional elasticity (stretchability). It is stronger and more durable than rubber, its major plant competitor. It was invented in 1959 by DuPont, and when first introduced it revolutionised many areas of the clothing industry.
SpinningSpinning is the process of creating yarn (or thread, rope, cable) from various raw fibre materials.
Spread Tow FabricsSpread Tow Fabrics is a type of lightweight fabric. Its production involves the steps of spreading a tow of higher count, e.g. 12k, into thin-and-wide spread tow tape (STT) and weaving them into a lightweight fabric by employing the novel tape-weaving technique.
StapleStaple is the raw material, or its length and quality, of fibre from which textiles are made.
StitchA stitch is a single turn or loop of the thread or yarn in sewing, knitting and embroidery.[13]
StuffStuff is a coarse cloth, sometimes made with a linen warp and worsted weft.
SuperThe Super grading system is used to grade the quality of wool fabric. The higher the number, the more yarn is packed in per square inch, therefore all things being equal a super 120s yarn is better than super 100s.
SurahA light weight, lustrous twill weave constructed fabric with a silk-like hand. Surah is the fabric of ties, dresses, and furnishings. It is available in silk, polyester, and rayon.
SuzaniA fabric pattern that originated in Central Asia and often features large, intricate medallions that were originally created through needlework. Fabrics that feature suzani prints usually include round floral designs.
Tablet weavingTablet weaving is a process of weaving where tablets, also called ‘cards’, are used to create the shed that the weft is passed through. It is generally used to make narrow work such as belts or straps.
TactelTactel is the brand name of a man-made fibre made from nylon.
TaffetaTaffeta is a type of fabric, often used for fancy dresses.
TapestryTapestry is a form of textile art. It is woven by hand on a weaving-loom. The chain thread is the carrier in which the coloured striking thread is woven. In this way, a colourful pattern or image is created. Most weavers use a naturally based chain thread made out of linen or wool. The striking threads can be made out of silk, wool, gold or silver, but can also be made out of any form of textile.
TarlatanTarlatan (alt. sp. tarlaton) is a starched, open-weave fabric, much like cheese cloth. It is used to wipe the ink off a plate during the intaglio inking process. The open weave allows for the tarlatan to pick up a large quantity of ink. The stiffness imparted by the starch helps prevent the fabric from taking the ink out of the incised lines.
TarpaulinA waterproofed canvas sometimes made of nylon or other manmade fiber.
TasselA tassel is a ball-shaped bunch of plaited or otherwise entangled threads from which at one end protrudes a cord on which the tassel is hung, and which may have loose, dangling threads at the other end.
TattingTatting is a technique for handcrafting lace that can be documented approximately to the early 19th century.
TencelCreated from wood pulp, Tencel is very soft with great drape. It’s usually a medium weight fabric that suitable for pants, skirts and jackets.
Terry clothTerry cloth is a type of cloth with loops sticking out. Most bath towels are examples of Terry cloth.
ThimbleA thimble is a protective shield worn on the finger or thumb.
Thread countThe thread count is the number of warp threads per inch plus the number of weft threads.
Threads per inch (TPI)Threads per inch is the measurement of the number of threads per inch of material, such as fabric, or metal in the case of screws and bolts.
TickingA variety of fabrics are known as “ticking.” The main weave is a closely-woven, thick yarn twill. Spaced, colored, and natural or white yarns repeated in the warp, and all natural or white in the filling, forming a stripe. Several color combinations used, as blue and white, brown and white, red and white. Heavy warp-face sateens as well as heavy sheetings are printed and sold as ticking. Jacquard damask ticking woven in damask effects also sold for this purpose as well as other fabrics, such as drills.
TissueTissue is a fine woven fabric or gauze.
ToileA type of decorating pattern consisting of a white or off-white background on which a repeated pattern depicting a fairly complex scene, generally of a pastoral theme such as (for example) a couple having a picnic by a lake. The pattern portion consists of a single colour, most often black, dark red, or blue. Greens and magenta toile patterns are less common but not unheard of.
TrimTrim or trimming in clothing and home decorating is applied ornament such as gimp, passementerie, ribbon, ruffles, or, as a verb, to apply such ornament.
TulleTulle is a netting, which is often starched, made of various fibers, including silk, nylon, and rayon, that is most commonly used for veils, gowns (particularly wedding gowns) and ballet tutus.
TweedA medium to heavy weight, fluffy, woolen, twill weave fabric containing colored slubbed yarns. Common end-uses include coats and suits.
TwillA fabric that shows a distinct diagonal wale on the face (e.g., denim, gabardine, tricotine).
Twill tapeTwill tape is a flat twill-woven ribbon of cotton, linen, polyester, or wool.
Twill weaveTwill is a type of fabric woven with a pattern of diagonal parallel ribs. It is made by passing the weft threads over one warp thread and then under two or more warp threads. Examples of twill fabric are gabardine, tweed and serge.
UltrasuedeAn imitation suede fabric composed of polyester microfibers combined with polyurethane foam in a non-woven structure. Hand and appearance resemble sheep suede.
VelourVelour is a textile, a knitted counterpart of velvet.It combines the stretchy properties of knits such as spandex with the rich appearance and feel of velvet.
VelvetVelvet is a type of tufted fabric in which the cut threads are very evenly distributed, with a short dense pile, giving it its distinct feel. Velvet can be made from any fiber. It is woven on a special loom that weaves two piece of velvet at the same time. The two pieces are then cut apart and the two lengths of fabric are wound on separate take-up rolls.
VelveteenVelveteen is a cotton cloth made in imitation of velvet. The term is sometimes applied to a mixture of silk and cotton. Some velveteens are a kind of fustian, having a rib of velvet pile alternating with a plain depression. The velveteen, trade varies a good deal with the fashions that control the production of velvet.
Venice laceThis lace often has a high profile, and is made using a needlepoint technique rather than embroidery. A heavier weight lace, the patterns vary from geometric to floral. Each pattern is attached to the others by bars made of thread.
ViscoseViscose is an artificial cellulose-based polymer, sometimes used as a synonym for Rayon
VisocseThe most common type of rayon. It is produced in much greater quantity than cuprammonium rayon, the other commercial type.
VoileA crisp, lightweight, plain weave cotton-like fabric, similar in appearance to organdy and organza. It is appropriate for curtains as well as blouses and dresses.
Waffle ClothSimilar to piqué in texture. Waffle cloth has a honeycomb weave made on dobby loom. Usually of cotton.
WarpThe warp is the set of lengthwise threads attached to a loom before weaving begins, and through which the weft is woven.
Warp knitKnitting is a method by which yarn is manipulated to create a textile or fabric for use in many types of garments.Knitting creates multiple loops of yarn, called stitches, in a line or tube. Knitting has multiple active stitches on the needle at one time. Knitted fabric consists of a number of consecutive rows of intermeshing of loops. As each row progresses, a newly created loop is pulled through one or more loops from the prior row, placed on the gaining needle, and the loops from the prior row are then pulled off the other needle.
Water repellentSome garments, and tents, are designed to give greater or lesser protection against rain. For urban use raincoats and jackets are used; for outdoor activities in rough weather there is a range of hiking apparel. Typical descriptions are “showerproof”, “water resistant”, and “waterproof”. These terms are not precisely defined. A showerproof garment will usually be treated with a water-resisting coating, but is not rated to resist a specific hydrostatic head. This is suitable for protection against light rain, but after a short time water will penetrate.
WaterproofWaterproof fabrics are fabrics that are inherently, or have been treated to become, resistant to penetration by water and wetting. The term “waterproof” refers to conformance to a governing specification and specific conditions of a laboratory test method. They are usually natural or synthetic fabrics that are laminated to or coated with a waterproofing material such as rubber, polyvinyl chloride (PVC), polyurethane (PU), silicone elastomer, fluoropolymers, and wax. Treatment could be either of the fabric during manufacture or of completed products after manufacture, for instance by a waterproofing spray. Examples include the rubberised fabric used in Mackintosh jackets, sauna suits and inflatable boats. They are even used for footballs and glasses.
WeavingWeaving is an ancient textile art and craft that involves placing two sets of threads or yarn made of fibre called the warp and weft of the loom and turning them into cloth. This cloth can be plain (in one color or a simple pattern), or it can be woven in decorative or artistic designs, including tapestries.
WeftThe weft is the yarn that is woven back and forth through the warp to make cloth.
Weft knitWeft or filling knitting is a construction process in which the fabric is made by yarn forming loops across the width of the fabric or around a circle. Each yarn is fed at more or less a right angle to the direction in which the fabric is built. The term weft is taken from weaving terminology. In weaving the term is used synonymously with filling or pick to refer to the crosswise yams that are laid during the weaving operation. Weft knit fabrics can be made by machines, weft knitting is also the technique usually used in hand-knitting. A considerable amount of filling knit fabric is made on a circular knitting machine, in which a series of needles is arranged around the circumference of a circle. Fabric may be made in the shape of a tube. If a fiat fabric is desired, the tube can be cut open. Many fabrics, in fact, are made with a specific location for slitting the fabric open. Such knits could not be used in tube form. Other circular knits are designed so that they may be used in the cylinder or tube form in which they are made, adjustments are made for shaping to a figure or form for end use.
Wilton CarpetWilton carpet is produced on a specific type of weaving machine called wire loom. Wilton carpets are pile carpets whereby the pile is formed by inserting steel rods in the pile warps of the fabric. After extraction of the rods the pile is looped (in case straight wires have been used) or cut (in case cutting wires are used). Wilton carpet is generally considered as high quality and is used for heavy duty applications. It is named after Wilton, Wiltshire.
Wire loomWeaving machine for pile fabrics or velvets whereby the pile is made by weaving steel rods or wires into the fabrics. When the wires are extracted the warp ends that have been woven over the wires remain as loops on top of the fabric or will form cut pile if the wire is equipped with a cutting blade. This technique is also known as “épinglé weaving”. A wire loom in a much wider version (up to 5 meters of width) and in heavier construction is used for the manufacturing of carpets is called a “WILTON” loom, and the carpets made on such a loom are known as “Wilton Carpets”
WoolWool is naturally stain and wrinkle resistant. It can absorb up to 40% of it’s weight in moisture without feeling damp. Wool comes in many forms including crepe, challis, gabardine, merino, melton, jersey and worsted wool suitings.
Wool CrepeA lightweight worsted fabric with a more or less crinkly appearance, obtained by using warp yarns that are tightly twisted in alternate directions. The term is often applied to lightweight worsted fabrics for women’s wear that have little or no crepe surface.
WoolenWoolen or woollen is the name of a yarn and cloth usually made from wool.
Worsted fabricWorsted is the name of a yarn and cloth usually made from wool. The yarn is well twisted and spun of long staple wool (though nowadays also medium and short fibres are used). The wool is combed so that the fibres lie parallel.
Woven fabricA woven fabric is a cloth formed by weaving. It only stretches in the bias directions (between the warp and weft directions), unless the threads are elastic. Woven cloth usually frays at the edges, unless measures are taken to counter this, such as the use of pinking shears or hemming.
YarnA continuous strand of textile fibers created when a cluster of individual fibers are twisted together. These long yarns are used to create fabrics, either by knitting or weaving.
Yarn-DyedA continuous strand of textile fibers created when a cluster of individual fibers are twisted together. These long yarns are used to create fabrics, either by knitting or weaving.
ZariAn even thread that is usually gold or silver, commonly found in brocades that adds a metallic sheen to fabric.
ZephyrA thin kind of cashmere made in Belgium. The term also refers to a waterproof wool fabric.
ZibelineA thick, soft fabric with a long nap. It is usually made of wool, such as mohair or alpaca, but can also be made from the hair of other animals, such as camels. Zibeline can also refer to either the sable (Martes zibellina) or its pelt, which zibeline was originally made from. Zibeline can also refer to a heavy silk fabric with a twill weave, very similar to Mikado.