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Synthetic & Special Fabric

wollen fabricSynthetic & Special Fabrics made from fibres that are not grown naturally fall into two categories: synthetic and rayon.

Synthetic fabric, such as polyester, nylon, acrylic, and elastane, are produced chemically from combinations of gas, petroleum, alcohol, water, and air. Rayons, such as viscose and acetate, are made from plant cellulose, which is regenerated to form fibres. Like the fabircs formed from natural fibres, most rayons are absorbent and comfortable to wear, but they crease easily and tend to shrink and ravel. Synthetic fabrics are durable, hardwearing , and crease-resistant, but they are not absorbent. Special fabrics include unusual and experimental textiles, as well as fabrics such as leather and suede, which require special sewing techniques.

Here are some of the many types of wollen fabrics:


SYNTHETIC & SPECIAL FABRIC
ARCYLIC
Acrylic is a lightweight, woven or knitted fabric that was developed as a wol substitute. It tends to retain static. Acrylic is used mainly for sportswear.
CREPON
A fabric made from chemically crimped yarns, this is soft and pliable, which makes it comfortable to wear. It is often used for blouses and evening wear.
FAILLE
A fine, cross-rib fabric, faille is similar to grosgrain. It creases easily. Made from acetate, polyester, or viscose, it is used mainly for dresses.
VISCOSE
This fabric is made from wood pulp or cotton waste. Soft, absorbent, and mothproof, it drapes well. It is often used for dresses and skirts.

SYNTHETIC & SPECIAL FABRIC
GROSGRAIN
This is a heavy, closely woven, stiff fabric that has a pronounced crossways rib. Grosgrain is usually used for formal garments and evenings wear.
POLYESTER CREPE
A soft, synthetic fabric, this is crease-resistant and hardwearing. It drapes very well and is used mainly for lingerie, blouses, dresses, and evening wear.
MICROFIBER
This is a densely woven, durable fabric made from very fine fibres, usually polyester. Some types are water-repellent. It is used for all types of clothing.
BOUCLE
This loosely woven or knitted fabric has looped or curled threads for a bulky look. Made from polyester, viscose, or wool blends, boucle is used mainly for suits.

SYNTHETIC & SPECIAL FABRIC
POLY LINEN
A polyester fabric, this is made to look and handle like linen, but has the crease resistance and ease of care of polyester. It is often used for suits and dresses.
CHARMEUSE
A delicate, satin-weave fabric, charmeuse has a shiny face and a matt back. Made form rayon, viscose, polyester, or blends, it is used mostly for blouses and lingerie.
POLAR FLEECE
This is a lightweight coating with a soft, brushed surface. It is usually made from bulked acrylic fibres, and is used mainly for outdoor wear.
CREPE-BACKED SATIN
A reversible fabric with a satin face and a crepe back, thi sis made from rayon, polyester, and silk. It drapes well, and is often used for dresses, blouses, and lingerie.

SYNTHETIC & SPECIAL FABRIC
FLOCK
A synthetic or mixed fabric, flock has short fibre tufts attached with an adhesive to form a pattern, It is used mostly for dresses, jackets, and evening wear.
PURE NYLON
This strong, lightweight fabric takes dye well. It is non-absorbent, but tends to build up static, and to ill. It is used mainly for rainwear, underwear, and skiwear.
JACQUARD
This has patterned finish that is reversed on the wrong side. The pattern may vary from fabric to fabric. Jacquard is often used for making suits, jackets, and skirts.
PETTICOAT NET
A mesh-like fabric made from nylon, net is not suitable for wearing next to the skin since it is abrasive. It is often used for full petticoasts, ballet skirts, and costumes.

SYNTHETIC & SPECIAL FABRIC
ACETATE
Similar to viscose but with a different chemical composition, acetate is lustrous, and drapes well. Is tis used mainly for dresses, lingerie, and sportswear.
VINYL
A heavy, synthetic, non-woven fabric, vinyl looks similar to leather but does not breathe as well. It is generally used for upholstery and outerwear.
CRINKLE
This is a synthetic, transparent, stiff fabric that is finely pleated with a crinkle finish. Care is needed when sewing. It is often used for evening wear.
PVC
A woven or knitted, lightweight fabric that is coated with polyvinyl chloride, PVS is tough and non-porous, and is used mainly for trims, rainwear, and aprons.

SYNTHETIC & SPECIAL FABRIC
RUBBER
This is produced from latex, the sap of the rubber plant. Rubber is flexible and waterproof. It is used generally for rainwear, work clothing, and novelty garments.
SEQUIN
This is a sheer frabric to which sequins are fixed during its production. These are heat sensitive and tarnish easily. The fabric is often used for eveningwear.
SPANDEX
A lightweight fabric made from elastomeric fibres, spandex can be combined with other fibres to add stretch. It is often used for casual clothes and sportswear.
LAME
This is smooth and shiny, knitted or woven fabric that uses a metallic yarn. Knitted lame drapes better than woven lame. It is used mainly for eveningwear.

SYNTHETIC & SPECIAL FABRIC
FUR
A fur fabric made from synthetic fibres (usually modacrylic) attached to a firm, woven backing, this is often used to make coats, jackets, hats, and bags.
LIQUID GOLD
This is synthetic, metallic fabric with a very shiny, decorative surface. It is soft to handle and drapes well. It is used mainly for eveningwear.
LEATHER
This is the tanned and finished outside of an animal skin, most commonly sheepskin or cowhide. Sold by the skin, It is used mostly for outerwear and luggage.

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Wollen Fabric

wollen fabricWool is a natural animal fibre spun from the fleece of sheep. The finest wools are made of short fibres, with the longer fibres producing a coarser fabric.

There are several types of specialty wool. These include mohair, angora, and cashmere, spun from the hair of particular breeds of goat, and alpaca, which is produced from the hairs of the alpaca, a close relative of the llama. Specialty wools are very soft and tend to be expensive since they are produced in relatively small quantities. They are often mixed with sheep’s wool to add luster and to improve the drape of a fabric. Wool is a versatile fabric and is available in several different weights, textures, and weaves, plain or twill weave being the most common. It is comfortable to wear and absorbs moisture well. It is also flame-resistant , water-repellent, and elastic. Wool is usually easy to clean, but it can be permanently damaged by sunlight, moths, bleach, and incorrect pressing.

Here are some of the many types of wollen fabrics:

WOLLEN FABRIC
WORSTED
This high-quality fabric is made from tightly woven, woolen yarns. It is hardwearing, does not sag easily, and is used mainly for suits, coats, and upholstery.
FLANNEL
A strong fabric with a plain or twill weave, flannel has a napped finish on one or both sides. It is commonly used for suits, jackets, skirts, and trousers.
CASHMERE
Obtained from the Kashmir goat, cashmere is a very fine, soft fabric that is warm and comfortable to wear. It is often used for scarves and coats.
TARTAN
Tartan is a checked, twill- weave fabric. Careful pattern layout is needed to match the fabric design. Tartan is used mainly for dresses, coats, skirts, and kilts.

WOLLEN FABRIC
CREPE
This is a fine, soft wool with a slack weave and textured surface. Crepe is springy to handle, but soft types drape well. It is often used for dresses and suits.
COATING
A bulky fabric usually woven on its outer surface, coating often has a prominent nap. It is used for large, loosely fitted garments such as coats and capes.
GABARDINE
A variety of fibres and wool blends is used to make this fabric, which has a close, twill weave. It is water-repellent and is used mainly for coats, skirts, and trousers.
MODERN TWEED
This tweed is a thick, woven fabric that is produced in a wider range o colours and patterns than traditional tweeds. It is used mostly for jackets and trousers.

WOLLEN FABRIC
TRADITIONAL TWEED
This rough, thick woolen fabric has a distinct woven pattern. It is named after the area of origin, as in Harries tweed, and is generally used for suits.
DOUBLE COATING
A bulky, reversible fabric made from two layers woven together, double coating is best suited to simple designs. It is often used for coats, capes , and sportswear.
CHALLIS
A plain weave wool, challis is lightweight, soft, and easy to handle. It is often printed with floral or paisley design, drapes well, and is used mainly for dresses.
VENETIAN
Any woollen fabric with a shiny, twill finish is called Venetian. Made originally form silk in Venice, It is now made from worsted yarns, and is often used for jackets.

WOLLEN FABRIC
NO CREASE WOOL
Developed to be crease resistant and to breathe well, this lightweights, fine wool drapes and gathers easily. It is used mainly for full skirts, dresses, and blouses.
SINGLE JERSEY
Plain knit single jersey has vertival ribs on the right side. It is used mostly for sportwear, children’s wear, and casual clothes. Can be loose, as shown, or fine.
DOUBLE JERSEY
This has vertical ribs on both sides and is firmer than single jersey. It is too bulky for gathers, but takes dyes well and holds in body heat. It is used mainly for suits.
MOHAIR
A plain weave fabric with a hairy texture, mohair is produced from the fibres of the angora goat. It is usually mixed with wool, and is used mainly for coats.

WOLLEN FABRIC
ALPACA
A soft, smooth, silky fabric that has a loose weave, alpaca is often mixed with other ficres to give a lustrous finish. It is generally used for coats and suits.

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Linen & Silk Fabric

linen & silk fabricLinen and silk are both derived from natural fibres and are traditionally associated with high-quality, luxury fabrics, although today they are becoming much more competitive in price.

Linen is produced from the fibres of the flax plant, while silk is woven from the silken threads that are spun by the silkworm.  Both these fabrics are available in a variety of weights and qualities and can be woven together to produce linen-and-silk and can be woven together to product linen and silk mixes. Linen is cool and highly absorbent, making it a particularly comfortable fabric to wear in hot climates. It take colour well but may crease easily, so it is often mixed with other fibres, such as cotton, to increase crease resistance. Silk is available as a mix, or in its pure form, in which it is woven in varying weights.

Here are some of the many types of linen & silk fabrics:

LINEN & SILK FABRIC
SUITING LINEN
This type of linen is a strong, absorbent fabric with a crisp finish. It crease easily but is comfortable to wear. It is often used for shirts, skirts, and jackets.
HANDKERCHIEF LINEN
This is a fine, sheer, lightweight fabric with a plain weave. It drapes well, forms tucks better than gathers, and is used mainly for handkershiefs, lingerie, and blouses.
NOIL
This raw silk is made from the waste created druing spinning. It has small fleckes of cocoon woven in with other fibres. It is used mainly for dresses and blouses.
SILK AND WOOL MIX
In a silk and wool mix the wool adds softness and body to the silk, while the silk adds lustre to the wool. The fabric is used mainly for suits and jackets.

LINEN & SILK FABRIC
SILK AND COTTON MIX
A soft and lightweight fabric, this has the lustre and drape of silk, but with a cotton weave, it is often used for bluses and dresses.
SILK AND LINEN MIX
In this mix the linene crispness is softened by silk, forming a shinny, dense fabric. It is easy to handle and is used mainly for suits, skirst dress, and trousers.
SILK SATIN
This silk has a smooth, lustrous surface and is available in different weights. It is often striped and is generally use for dresses, jackets, and evening wear.
TAFFETA
A smooth, crisp, plain weave silk fabric, taffeta has fine ribbing and a lustrous finish. It creases easily. It is used mainly for dresses, jackets, and bridal and evening wear.

LINEN & SILK FABRIC
ORGANZA
This is a very fine, transparent, stiff, plain weave fabric. It is often used for trims, collars, facings, and fabric flowers, as well as for evening and bridal wear.
WASHED SILK
This is a silk that has been washed in fabric softerners to make it soft and slightly fad in appearance. It drapes well and is used mainly for shirts and dresses.
CREPE DE CHINE
A mediumweight, smooth silk fabric, cre de chine drapes well. If bias cut, it gives extra drape to evening wear. It is also used for blouses and lingerie.
DEVORE VELVET
This textured fabric is treated with an acid, which burns away the nap to reveal a pattern. It has a luxurious feel and is used mainly for evening wear.

LINEN & SILK FABRIC
CHIFFON
An open-weave, sheer silk fabric, chiffon is made from tightly twisted yarns. It drapes well and is commonly used for evening wear, blouses, and lingerie.
HABUTAI
This silk is a soft cloth that originated in Japan. It is available in several weights and is used mainly for dresses, blouses, and jackets, and for lignin garments.
DUPION
Made from double strands of silk, dupion has an uneven surface. It edges tend to fray. It is generally used for dresses, jackets and evening and bridal wear.
GEORGETTE
A loosely woven, sheer fabric with highly twisted yarns, georgette is often used for buses, dresses, and evenings wear. It is also produced as polyester.

LINEN & SILK FABRIC
SHANTUNG
Woven from irregular yarns, shantung is a mediumweight, plain weave silk fabric with a rough texture. It is used mainly for shirts, dresses, and trousers.

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Cotton Fabric

cotton fabricCotton has been used as a fabric for making clothes for many centuries, it is one of the most versatile, traditional, and popular fabrics available.

800px-Armenian_cottonIt is a natural material, made by twisting together the long , fibrous hairs that cover the seed pods of the cotton plant. These fibres vary in length and thickness, and have an absorbent quality, making cotton both soft and comfortable to wear. The longest, finest, and most lustrous fibres make the best-quality cottons, such as Sea Island and Egyptian. Cotton varies greatly in weight and quality, ranging form lightweight, loosely woven sheers to heavy, napped fabrics such as velvet. Other fibres, such as silk, are often blended with cotton to produce durable, mixed-fibre fabrics.
Many easy-care, crease-resistant fabrics are blends of cotton and synthetic fibres. Cotton fabrics are widely used for dressmaking, as well as for bed linen, upholstery, and other soft furnishings.

Here are some of the many types of cotton fabrics:

COTTON FABRIC
JERSEY
The quality of jersey varies. A good-quality jersey has fine, knit stitches, drapes well, and is crease-resistant. It is used for sportswear, dresses, and T-shirts.
GINGHAM
A lightweight, plain-weave, strong fabric with even checks, gingham is often used for blouses, skirts, children’s clothes, and table linen.
MADRAS COTTON
The lightweight, plain-weave fabric creases easily and is woven in different colours to form checks or patterns. It is used most for making casual clothes.
CHAMBRAY
Chambray is a light to medium weight, plain-weave fabric. It is easy to sew and wears well. It is often used for shirts and children’s wear.

COTTON FABRIC
CHINTZ
This is closely woven, plain-weave fabric with a glazed finish. It wears well and is used mainly for soft furnishings and dresses.
POPLIN
A fin and cross-rib, medium weight fabric with a plain weave, poplin is both versatile and absorbent. It is used mainly for shirts, blouses, and dresses.
SEERSUCKER
This is a lightweight fabric woven with alternating stripes of puckered fabric and flat fabric. It is often used for shirts, suits, and children’s clothes.
LAWN
A lightweight, crisp, and plain-weave fabric, lawn is smooth and absorbent. It is often used for sewing blouses, soft collars, cuffs, baby dresses, and underwear.

COTTON FABRIC
MUSLIN
This cotton-blend or cotton fabric has a plain, open weave. It is used as an interlining in tailoring, for window treatments, and when sewing test garments.
CRINKLE COTTON
Also called crepon, this is pure cotton but may contain other fibres. It is soft and absorbent, and comfortable to wear. It is used mostly for dresses and blouses.
VEST
This is a transparent mesh fabric with large holes formed between thick, interlinking threads. It is used for vests, fashion garments, and laundry bags.
VOILE
A fine and sheer fabric with a plain weave, voile can be either plain or printed. It is often used for children’s clothes, blouses, dresses, blinds, and curtains.

COTTON FABRIC
LACE
This decorative fabric is made from knotted, looped, or twisted thread. It is used as a trimming on items such as dresses, curtains, and table linen.
CAMBRIC
A fine, smooth, firm, plain-weave fabric that is closely woven, cambric is often used for children’s and baby clothes, blouses, and handkerchiefs.
CHEESECLOTH
A soft, loosely woven fabric, cheesecloth has a plain weave, a rough finish, and a crinkled appearance. It is used mainly for blouses, shirts, skirts, and nightwear.
BRODERIE ANGLAISE
A plain-weave cotton or cotton-synthetic mix, this fabric has shaped, embroidered eyelets punched in it, and is used for dresses, nightwear, and table linen.

COTTON FABRIC
CALICO
This is a coarse, lightweight fabric that has a plain weave. It is used for mattress covers and sheeting. It is also used in tailoring to make test garments.
DAMASK
A double-sided, woven fabric, damask has a satin weave against a plain background. It is used mainly for jackets, waistcoats, curtains, linens, and upholstery.
DENIM
This is a strong and washable, densely woven, twill-weave fabric. It is used mainly for casual clothes such as jeans, jackets, shirts, and work clothes.
TICKING
This twill-weave cotton or cotton blend fabric has even stripes. It is used mostly for covering pillows and mattresses, as well as for making soft furnishings.

COTTON FABRIC
MOLESKIN
A mediumweight, firm fabric, moleskin has a fine nap on one side, giving a brushed surface. It is used mainly for casual shirts, dungarees, and children’s trousers.
WINCYETTE
This is a soft and warm, brushed cotton fabric with a plain weave. It is easy to handle and is commonly used for bed linen and nightwear. It is highly flammable.
DRILL
This is a strong, cotton fabric with a twill weave. When dyed and olive colour, it is known as khaki. It is often used for uniforms, casual wear, and work clothes.
TOWELLING
This fabric has uncut loops of cotton on the surface. High-quality toweling has loops on both sides of the fabric. It is used mainly for towels and bathrobes.

COTTON FABRIC
CORDUROY
A hardwearing fabric, corduroy has lengthways ribs of pile that brush smoothly one way. Ribs vary in size. It is often used for shirts, sportswear, and children’s clothes.
BRUSHED COTTON
This warm, plain or printed cotton has surface fibres that are brushed on one side. It is used mostly for casual shirts, warm linings, and children’s clothes.
COTTON VELVET
Velvet is a woven fabric with a silky pile or nap on the right side. The pile brushed smoothly one way. It is often used for evening wear and soft furnishings.