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thermal woven

A porous cloth so constructed that air warmed by the body is trapped between the yarns. First used in underwear, it is now used for blankets and the reverse sides of comforters.

woven seersucker

Woven seersucker is a crinkly and stripy cotton fabric made by weaving some of the yarns in tighter tension than others.

art linen

A medium-weight linen or blended fabric which is plain-woven. Normally used for embroidery, dresses, uniforms, table linens, and other types of embroidered items.


The term was used to name the wool from karakul lambs. Nowadays, it is also used to describe a fabric woven or knitted to similar to this wool. It is curly and heavy. Connected to: karakul


Loosely woven fabric, normally made of cotton or wool, which nowadays also can contain other fibers. Originally used for school bags or as covers for the doors leading to servants quarters in England. Baize is used for industrial purposes as well.


Barathea is mixed fabric which contains silk, rayon, cotton or wool and is closely woven. It has a typical pebbly surface. Barathea is used for dresses, neckties, trimmings, and suits.


The term "Barre" describes a fabric, either knit or woven, in which stripes run in crosswise directions. Barre also refers to flaws in fabric that appear as unwanted crosswise stripes of texture or color.


A fabric named for Jean Baptiste, a French linen weaver. (1) In cotton, a sheer, fine muslin, woven of combed yarns and given a mercerized finish. It is used for blouses, summer shirts, dresses, lingerie, infants dresses, bonnets, and handkerchiefs. (2) A rayon, polyester, or cotton-blend fabric with the same characteristics. (3) A smooth, fine wool fabric that is lighter than challis, and similar to fine nuns veiling. It is used for dresses and negligees. (4) A sheer silk fabric either plain or figured, similar to silk mull. It is often called batiste de soie and is made into summer dresses.

Bedford cloth

Bedford cloth is a strong woven fabric with lengthwise ribs. Normally used for upholstery and riding breeches and may be made of any fiber.


Benares is a lightweight fabric from India. Named after the town of Benares it is usually woven with metallic threads.


Fabric with a woven-in dobby design. The pattern has a center dot and resembles the eye of a bird. It is used in cotton diapers, pique, and wool sharkskin. See pique.


A process of joining two or more layers of cloth with a layer of adhesive, or pressing fibers into thin webs or mats held together by adhesive, plastic, or self-bonding that melts when heat is applied.Nonwoven fabrics are made in this way. The term occasionally is used as a synonym for laminating, but this is technically incorrect


Boucle is a fabric woven with boucle yarns with looped appearance on the surface. The fabric has a abrasive surface. Boucle fabrics are woven or knitted by both, hand and machine.


Although the term broadcloth originally meant any fabric made on a loom of a certain width, it now means a fine, tightly woven fabric with a faint rib. Originally, it was made of mercerized cotton, but today the term is used to describe several dissimilar fabrics made with different fibers, weaves, and finishes. (1) Originally, a silk shirting fabric so named because it was woven in widths exceeding the usual twenty-nine inches. (2) A plainweave, tightly woven, high-count cotton fabric, with fillingwise rib finer than poplin. Best grades are made of combed pima or Egyptian cotton, usually with high thread counts (136x60 or 144x76). The fabrics are usually mercerized, sanforized, and given a soft lustrous finish, and are used for womens blouses, tailored summer dresses, and mens shirts. (3) A closely woven, medium-weight wool cloth with a smooth nap, velvety feel, and lustrous appearance. Wool broadcloth can be made with a two-up-and-two-down twill weave or plain weave. In setting up a loom to make the fabric, the loom is threaded wide to allow for a large amount of shrinkage during the filling process. The fabric takes its name from this wide threading. High-quality wool broadcloth is fine enough for garments that are closely molded to the figure or draped. Its high-luster finish makes it an elegant cloth. Wool broadcloth is ten to sixteen ounces per yard and is now being made in chiffon weights. (4) A fabric made from silk or man-made filament fiber yarns and woven in a plain weave with a fine crosswise rib obtained by using a heavier filling than warp yarn.


Brocade is used as a drapery or upholstery fabric. It has a Jacquard weave with an allover interwoven design, normally figures or flowers. The name is derived from the French word meaning to ornament. The brocade pattern is accentuated with varying surfaces or colors and often has gold, silver, or other metallic threads running through it. Although true brocades still are produced, nowadays the term is also used for knits with a similar luxurious look. A brocade rug, in carpeting, is one in which different yarns of the same color create a subtle pattern.


A loosely woven fabric used primarily for flags and draping. Bunting used in public places must be flameproof. Bunting is also a term used to describe a simple rectangular square of material in which a baby is wrapped for warmth.

butcher rayon

A coarse rayon, or rayon and acetate blend, mediumweight fabric woven in a plain weave and originally intended as a substitute for butcher linen.


A smooth-surfaced, plain weave cloth. Today, the term is almost always applied to fabric with bright, sharply contrasting, usually small-print designs. Calico is usually woven, although calico prints may appear on knits. Calico is a traditionally popular fabric for patchwork. It is also used for dresses, sportswear, and aprons.


A closely woven, plain weave, white fabric that is finished with a slightly glossy surface. The fabric is traditionally made from cotton or linen, but can be made from any fiber. It was formerly used in underwear and handkerchiefs, but today its major uses are to reinforce book bindings and to upholster the underside of chairs and sofas. Very low count, heavily sized glazed cambric is used for costuming.


(1) A plain-woven fabric with an almost square count (80x76), a colored warp, and a white filling, that gives a mottled, colored surface. The fabric is named for Cambrai, France, where it was first made for sunbonnets. Although chambray is traditionally woven, the look itself is so popular it is imitated in knitting. It is similar in appearance to denim but much lighter in weight. It is used for womens and childrens summer dresses and mens shirts. (2) A cotton print cloth made of yarn-dyed yarns that can also be woven in patterns and woven in stripes. (3) A similar but carded-yarn fabric used for work clothes and childrens play clothes. See denim.


Soft, pliable leather from the skin of the chamois goat, although other animal skins may be substituted. It is used for gloves and as a cloth for washing autos. Chamois cloth is woven to imitate the leather, usually has a slightly napped surface, and is usually yellow, as is the goat skin. It is also used in clothing.

changeable fabric

Fabric woven with yarns of one color in the warp and another color in the filling so that the fabric seems to change color as the light strikes it. Other names for this type of fabric are iridescent and shot.


A check is any small, regular pattern of squares woven or knitted into, or printed on, a fabric. See types of checks following.

district check

The name given to several quite different woven check patterns that originated in Scotland. The term applies to designs ranging from glen checks to shepherd checks

gingham check

Regular check in which the design is woven so that, in a red and white checked gingham, for example, there are squares of solid red, squares of solid white, and squares of white warp and red filling, as well as squares with red warp and white filling. Gingham checks are also printed on woven and knitted fabrics, and are knitted into some fabrics by means of a Jacquard attachment.


A design in which one check is woven or printed over another of a different size. Glen checks are overchecks.


Chenille is a fabric consisting of wool, cotton, silk or artifical fibers. It is woven from blurry yarns or tufts. Usually it is a mix from chenille and normal textile yarns. While chenille is the filling, the other yarn is the warp. Chenille is a pile yarn originally made by weaving a pile fabric and subsequently cutting it into strips. Its main use is for draperies and bedspreads.


Any closely woven, plain-weave, glazed cotton and blends of polyestercotton fabric, often printed in bright designs, which are most often floral. It is used for draperies, slipcovers, bedspreads, upholstery, and now mens and boys shirts, and ladies and girls dresses.

corded fabric

The term corded fabric (often shortened to cord) refers to fabrics with a lengthwise rib, often woven in stripes. Any fabric with a lengthwise rib.


A ribbed, high-luster, cut-pile fabric with extra filling threads that form lengthwise ribs or wales. The rib has been sheared or woven to produce a smooth, velvet-like nap. The thread count varies from 46 x 116 to 70 x 250. Traditionally made of cotton, corduroy can be made of many different fibers, such as rayon and polyester blends. lt is used for dresses, coats, sports jackets, sports shirts, bathrobes, slacks, and draperies.


A lightweight fabric of silk, rayon, cotton, wool, man-made, or blended fibers, and characterized by a crinkled surface. This surface is obtained through the use of crepe yarns (yarns that have such a high twist that the yarn kinks), and by chemical treatment with caustic soda, embossing, or weaving (usually with thicker warp yarns and thinner filling yarns). Although crepe is traditionally woven, crepe yarns are now used to produce knit crepes.


A cotton twill weave fabric made of single hard-twisted yarns. The staple type has colored warp and white or undyed filling thread. When the fabric (and the look) became popular, the name denim was given to many other types of fabric, including cross-dyed fabrics and brushed fabrics, both knit and woven, that resemble true denim. Most jeans are made of denim and the most popular and traditional denim color is blue. Sports denim is softer and lighter in weight. It is now available in many colors, and in plaids and stripes. Woven-in stripes and plaids are popular for draperies, upholstery, and bedspreads.

Donegal tweed

Originally a thick woolen homespun fabric woven by hand by Irish peasants in County Donegal, Ireland. Today, the term is used to refer to any tweed in plain weave characterized by thick, colorful slubs woven into the fabric. See tweed.


Originally, a fabric lighter in weight than canvas. Today, the terms are synonymous. A durable plain-weave, closely woven cotton, generally made of ply yarns, in a variety of weights and thread counts. It is used for uniforms, belts, awnings, tents, and sails. See canvas.


A nonwoven fabric or interlocked fiber made from wool, fur, and hair fibers that mesh together when heat, moisture, and mechanical action are applied. Processes of spinning, weaving, or knitting are not employed. The fibers develop a tight bond and will not ravel. Some percentage of wool is necessary in the manufacture of true felt to achieve the felted effect. It is used for coats, hats, and many industrial purposes.


Fibers of the flax plant that are spun into linen yarns and woven into linen cloth. The word linen is derived from linum, part of the scientific name for the flax plant. See linen.


"A strong, hard-finished, clear-surfaced, mediumto heavy-weight, tightly woven steep-twilled fabric with rounded wales and a flat back. The diagonal wales are fine, close, and steep, and are more pronounced than in serge. The wales cannot be seen on the wrong side of the fabric. Gabardine goes in and out of fashion


A thin, sheer, open, loosely woven, plain-weave cotton fabric with widely spaced yarns, used for diapers and surgical dressings. It can also be made of wool, silk, rayon, or other man-made fibers. Some weights are stiffened for curtains, trimmings of dresses, and other decorative or apparel purposes.


The name, sometimes used in place of lame, for any fabric woven or knitted with all metallic yarns or with a combination of metallic and other fiber yarns. Today, most glitter is made from one of the nontarnishable metallic fibers, a great improvement over lame of the past that tended to darken with age.

grass cloth

A plain-weave, loosely woven fabric made from such fibers as hemp, ramie, and even nettle. Today, true grass cloth is relatively rare, but the appearance of grass cloth is copied in wallpaper and fabrics of man-made fibers.


A fairly heavy, closely woven, firm, corded or ribbed fabric, made in silk or rayon warp with cotton cords. The cords are round and firm, heavier than in poplin, rounder than in faille. Grosgrain is often made in narrow widths for use as trimming. The most common use of grosgrain is for ribbons in which the ribs are usually narrow, but it can be made with larger ribs for academic gowns. It is really a bengaline in narrow goods and is used for ribbons, neckties, and lapel facings.


Soft, lightweight silk dress fabric originally woven in the gum on hand looms in Japan. It is sometimes confused with China silk, which is technically lighter in weight.


Originally, fabrics made from yarns spun by hand. Today, homespun is used for fabrics that imitate this look. It is a very coarse, rough, plain-weave fabric, loosely woven with irregular, tightly twisted, and nubby, unevenly spun yarns. It is made from linen, wool, cotton, or man-made fiber, or blends in varied colors and is used for coats, suits, sportswear, draperies, upholstery, and slipcovers.


A heavy silk, pongee-type, but a finer weave, originally the product of wild silkworms of Honan, China. A fabric of the best grade of Chinese silk, it is sometimes woven with blue edges. It is now made to resemble a heavy pongee, with slub yarns in both warp and filling. Honan is manufactured from silk or from man-made fibers. It is used for womens dresses. See silk, pongee, and wild silk.


A type of toweling fabric with a honeycombed surface made by using heavy filling yarns in a dobby weave. It has excellent absorbent qualities. It is woven with a pattern, most often with a dobby attachment on the loom and may have Jacquard borders. Huck is traditionally made of cotton, linen, or rayon, or a mixture of these, although today, other fibers may be used. In a mixture it is called a union fabric. Face or hand towels are made in white or colors and are used for drying dishes, glasses, and kitchen utensils. Huck is also called huckaback. Embroidery enthusiasts often use huck as a ground for their work. See dobby.


A knitted or woven fabric made of yarns dyed before knitting or weaving.


Fabric woven with yarns of one color in the warp and another color in the filling so that the fabric seems to change color as the light strikes it. Other names for this type of fabric are changeable and shot.


A term used to describe fabrics with a woven or knitted pattern, whether or not they are made with a Jacquard attachment on the loom. The Jacquard attachment for weaving and knitting machines makes possible the manufacture of complicated, repeated geometrical designs in knits and wovens. See dobby.

jacquard patterns

Fancy patterns knitted in articles made by a special attachment on the knitting machine. Jacquard weave A construction characterized by very intricate woven-in designs. A special Jacquard loom makes these designs by controlling each warp yarn.


Near Eastern oriental fabric woven with a shuttle or needle, with no pile. Kilims are used by the Orientals as portieres, couch covers, and table covers.

knit terry cloth

Terry cloth is a soft, absorbent fabric with loops on one or both sides. When this fabric is knit rather than woven, it is called knit terry. Knit terry is especially popular for bathrobes and beach wear because of its absorbency. Stretch knit terry (usually made stretchable by the addition of a synthetic elastic fiber) is popular for baby clothes because of its absorbency and comfort.

Renaissance lace

A lace made of woven strips of fabric joined by flat stitches. See Battenberg lace.


Brocade, damask, or brocatelle fabrics in which flat metallic yarns (or with a combination of metallic and other fiber yarns) are woven or knitted in warp and filling for a luxurious effect. Today, most lame is made from one of the nontarnishable metallic fibers, a great improvement over lame of the past that tended to darken with age. Lame is also a trademark terrn for a nontarnishable metallic yarn. Glitter is sometimes used to describe this type of fabric and is used for evening dresses, blouses, and trimmings.


An ornamental embroidery effect woven into a cloth by a series of needles. The design, often in zigzag effect, is not clipped.


A woven belt that looks like a cowboys rope.


An open, lacy woven fabric made with a special loom attachment. In a leno weave a pair of filling yarns twist around the warp yarns in various patterns to achieve the lacy effect. A leno weave is also made by twisting adjacent warps around each other like a figure eight. The filling passes through the twisted warps. l.eno fabrics are popular for curtains and summer dresses.


A vegetable fiber obtained from the inside of the woody stalk of the flax plant. It is one of the oldest fabrics known. It is strong, and todays man-made fibers are often blended with it to improve its wrinkle resistance and give the fabric other desirable qualities. Linen is woven in various weights for different purposes and is occasionally used in knit blends. The following entries are common linen names.

Iinen straw

A type of straw made to resemble woven linen. See straw


When linen and wool were woven together in the 18th century, the resulting coarse, loosely woven, and rather scratchy fabric, was called linsey-woolsey. Although linen and wool blends are occasionally made today, the use of finer finishing techniques makes them extremely comfortable and the name linsey-woolsey is limited to historical references.

loden cloth

A thick, heavy, napped fleecy coating fabric woven of coarse grade wool in Austria and the German Tyrol. It is similar to duffel cloth if made of wool or the occasional man-made fibers. Since the wool has some grease, it is naturally water-repellent. lt is usually a light forest green color, called loden, from which it (gets its name. Loden cloth moves in and out of fashion everywhere except in those parts of Germany and Austria where loden jackets, suits, and coats are considered basic dress. Loden cloth is sometimes gray in color. See duffel cloth.


A fine, soft, cotton cloth woven of softly twisted yarns. It is similar to nainsook but slightly heavier, with a duller surface. Longcloth is so called because it was one of the first fabrics to be woven in Iong rolls. lt is also a synonym for muslin sheeting af gaod quality. The fabric is used for underwear and linings. See nainsook and muslin sheeting.

loom-figured fabrics

Fabrics that have the design or pattern woven or knitted in as opposed to those which, for instance, have patterns printed on finished cloth.

Macclesfield silk

Hand-woven silk or rayon fabric with small overall Jacquard patterns. Macclesfield, England, is the town of origin. Today, the name applies to small, yarn dyed, dobby designs used in mens neckties. See Spitalfields.


A light, strong, sheer, open-textured curtain fabric in leno weave, often with dots woven into the surface. The thread count varies from 48 x 22 to 60 x 40. Marquisette, extremely popular for curtains and mosquito netting, is made of cotton, rayon, acetate, nylon, polyester, acrylic, glass, silk, or mixtures.


A firmly woven reversible fabric with raised geometric designs. Marseilles was originally made of cotton, but is now usually made from man-made fibers or blends.

metallic doth

Any fabric, such as lame, woven with gold, silver, tinsel, or other metal threads.


A long woven or knitted scarf worn around the neck for warmth.

rag rug

A floor covering woven with strips of twisted rags made of cotton, wool, r synthetic fabrics braided, crocheted, or bound and used as the filling on a cotton or synthetic yarn warp. Rag rugs are made by hand or machine, and with the exception of some handmade antique rags, usually are the most inexpensive rugs.

reprocessed fibers

Fibers obtained from scraps and clips of woven and felted fabrics made of previously urmsed woot that have been shredded back into fiber form and then remade into new yarns. Reprocessed fibers are usually wool fibers and must be relabeled as reprocessed wool according to Federal Trade Commission standards. Reprocessed fibers are less desirable than new or virgin fibers. See virgin Fiber.

rib weave

A plain weave that forms ridges in a fabric through the way in which it is woven or by the use of thicker yarns for the filling than those used tot the warp. See weaving, filling, and warp.


A flat braid woven in a zig-zag, serpentine shape. It is available in several widths and is an extremely popular and inexpensive trimming.

rag rug

A rug woven with strips of cotton, wool, or synthetic fabrics used as the filling on a cotton or synthetic yarn warp. Rag rugs are made by hand and machine and, with the exception of some hand-made antique rag rugs, are usually the most inexpensive rugs.


Originally, a firmly woven cotton canvas used for making sails. Today, sailcloth is a very heavy, strong, plain-weave fabric made of cotton, linen, jute, nylon, or palyester. It comes in many qualities and weights. In common usage, the terms duck, sailcloth, and canvas often are used interchangeably. Sailcloth can be used for sportswear, slipcovers and upholstery, and curtains and draperies. See canvas and duck.


One of the basic weaves. A shiny, smooth silk, acetate, rayon, or other man-made fiber combination woven in satin weave made with a cotton filling. It has a smooth, lustrous surface because the warp floats. It is used for linings of coats, jackets, facings, and ties. It is also used for draperies, upholstery, bedspreads, and sheets. Satin weave has proved so popular that various types of satin-weave fabrics have developed. Following i.s a listing of many of the types of satin fabrics. See weaving and sateen.

slipper satin

Slipper satin is a tightly woven satin fabric, usually lighter in weight than duchesse satin, and used for many purposes including evening shoes or slippers.

satin brocade

A satin with a raised woven-n design. It resembles a fine embroidered pattern.


The long, outer, finished edge of both sides of a woven fabric that does not ravel because the filling yarns wrap around the warp yarns. It may also be called self-edge or selvedge.

shadow printing

A printing method in which only the warp yarns are printed with a design before the fabric is woven. ""fhe resulting fabric has a wavy, shadowy effect. It is also called warp printing.


(1) A heavy weight, fairly lustrous cotton, linen, silk, or man-made fiber fabric with a sleek, hard-finished, crisp, and pebbly surface and a chalky luster. Today, it is almost always made of acetate or triacetate. Filament yarns, when used, are twisted and woven tightly in a plain-weave or basket-weave construction, depending on the effect desired. Staple fiber yarns are handled in the same manner, except for wool. Sharkskin is best known in its stark white color especially popular for tennis outfits and for permanently pleated white skirts when they are in fashion. (2) A wool fabric in twill weave, originally made of yarns of two colors.


Another term for filling, weft, woof, and shute. The crosswise thread that interlaces with the warp threads on a woven fabric.


Another name for iridescent and changeable fabric. Fabric woven with yarns of one color in the warp and another color in the filling so that the fabric seems to change color as the light strikes it.


Another term for weft, woof, shoot, and filling. The crosswise thread that interlaces with the warp threads on a woven fabric.


Silk fabric woven from silk made by wild, uncultivated silkworms. Tussah is naturally tan in color, cannot be bleached, and has a rougher texture than cultivated silk. Wild silkworms eat leaves other than mulberry leaves which cultivated silkworms eat exclusively. The difference in diet accounts for the different fiber and fabric characteristics. Tussah is also used to describe fabrics designed to imitate this kind of silk. See wild silk.


An English town and the home of Huguenot weavers, it is now a lace-making center. In this town, the hand-woven Jacquard silk Spitalfields tie originated.


A fairly stiff material made from the stems, leaves, bark, or stalks of various plants. It is usually braided or woven to form a fabric. Straw is used in large quantities for hats when they are in style. Most straw today is used for baskets and handbags of various kinds. Chip straw is used almost exclusively for baskets. It is a by-product of the lumber industry and is made from chips and other pieces of wood, including shavings. Leghorn straw is a braided straw popular for hats and is made from wheat grown in Italy. Panarna, another braided hat straw, is made from the screw pine. Other types of straw include Bangkok, linen (straw made to resembie woverr linen), Milan, ramie, sisal (used for rugs and ropes), toyo, and Tuscan.

stretch fibers

Rubber or man-made plastik fibers (such as spandex and anidex) that are naturally elastic or man-rnade fibers, highly twisted, heat-set, and untwisted to leave a strong crimp. Polyester has a certain degree ol natural streich and more can iue given to the yarn in the processing or in the finishing of the fabric. Occasionally, polyester woven fabrics are described as stretch fabrics. Usually, stretch implies a degree of visible give in a fiber or fabric that stretches and then returns quickly to its original shape. Stretch fabrics are sometirnes described as elastic. Sec elastic, crimp, and recovery. See also spandex and anidex.

structural design

A woven-in pattern as opposed to one printed on a fabric.


Another name for fabric. Any braided, felted, woven, knitted, or nonwoven material, including cloth, hosiery, and lace. Stuff is also referred to as cloth, material, and goods.

suede fabric

A woven or knitted fabric of cotton, man-made fibers, wool, or blends, finished to resemble suede leather. It is used in sport coats, gloves, linings, and cleaning cloths.


A fine, yarn-dyed, closely woven, plain-weave, smooth on both sides, stiffened fabric with a crisp feel and a sheen on its surface. Taffeta was originally made of silk, but is also made of rayon, cotton, acetate, or other man-made fibers. lt is named for the Persian fabric "taftan". The rustle of silk taffeta is called scroop, and it may be a solid color, printed or woven so that the colors appear iridescent. A list of the most common types of taffeta follows. lt is used for dresses, blouses, ribbons, draperies, bedspreads, and curtains. See scroop.


A Jaquard woven fabric in cotton, wool, or man-made fibers. Traditionally, a decorative wall hanging woven to depict a scene. The filling threads are changed in color to fit the design. On the back, shaded stripes identify this fabric. It is used extensively for wall hangings, table covers, draperies, and upholstery. Some rugs are made in tapestry weaves. The word is also used for needlepoint, but this use is generally considered incorrect. Machine-made fabrics, also called tapestry, have regular designs on the surface and a slightly looped pile. They are used for such things as coats and handbags.


A surface woven with a nubby yarn construction. lt may be made in any liber.


An adjective used to describe fabrics which are warmer for their weight than other fabries. lt is usually limited to those fabrics woven in a honeycomb pattern leaving small spaces in which an can be trapped. Thermal fabrics are popular for underwear and blankets. See honeycomb.


A broad term for extremely strong woven fabrics which are used as a covering for pillows, mattresses, and box springs, home-furnishings, and for work clothes and sports clothes. lt is a heavy, tightly woven carded cotton fabric usually in a pattern of alternately woven stripes in the warp, Jacquard or dobby designs, or printed patterns. lt is usually twill but may be sateen weave. When ticking is used in clothing, striped ticking with narrow woven stripes is usually most popular. Red and white, black and white, and navy and white are the most popular ticking color combinations.


The French word for cloth. Toile is also a woven fabric that has been printed, usually in one color only, with a scenic design. This is occasionally called turle de Jouy. lt is most commonly found in home furnishings fabrics. Toile is also used in the field of expensive designer clothing where the word is used to describe a fabric pattern for a garment.

glass cloth

A towel used to dry drinking glasses, glass plates, and silver. lt is made from linen. Glass towels are often checked red and white and rnay have the word "Glass;" woven into the fabric."


A knit or woven fabric with a thick, short pile. Every velour cloth has cut loops to produce the velour effect. [t also has a rich look, but is not as effective in drying as conventional terry cloth. lt may also be spelled velours.

tracing cloth

A nonwoven, transparent fabric used for tracing designs and especially patterns. Since tracing cloth is fabric, it can be marked and altered more easily than paper used for the same purpose.


A narrow, flat fabric that is woven, knitted, or braided, and is used as is to trim an edge or folded over to bind an edge.


A term used to describe narrow trimmings with multicolored designs woven into them. Various types of braid, such as peasant braid, are popular during certain fashion periods.


A closely woven, flat braid used for accenting draperies and furniture. Also called braid. The term galloon is also used for any narrow fabric with decorative edges, such as scallops finished the same on each side. Lace made in this way is called galloon lace.


A narrow, woven fabric with two finished edges. Both natural and man-made fibers are used in making ribbon. lt is available in many patterns and colors and in such fabric constructions as velvet, satin, and grosgrain. See velvet, satin, and grosgrain.


A flat braid woven in a zigzag, serpentine shape. lt is available in several widths and is an extremely popular and inexpensive trimming.

tufted carpet

Made by needling pile yarns into a previously woven backing of jute or cotton.

tufted fabric

"A fabric ornamented with soft, fluffy, slackly twisted ply yarns (usually cotton). Most tufts are inserted by needles into a woven fabric, such as unbleached muslin, textured cotton, and rayon plain-weave cloth. When tufts are spaced (as coin dots), a bedspread is called candlewick

tussah silk

Silk fabric woven from silk made by wild, uncultivated silkworms. Tussah is strong, but coarse and uneven. lt is naturally tau in color, cannot be bleached, and has a rougher texture than cultivated silk. lt is used in shantung and pongee. Wild silkworms eat leaves other than mulberry leaves eaten exclusively by silkworms. The difference in diet accounts for the different fiber and fabric characteristics. Tussah is also used to describe fabrics designed to imitate this kind of silk. See wild silk.

Donegal tweed

Originally, a fabric woven by hand in County Donegal, Ireland. Today, the word is used to refer to any tweed with thick, usually colored slubs as part of the fabric.

Harris tweed

Tweed hand-woven from yarns spun by hand or machine on the islands of the Outer Hebrides off the coast of Scotland. Harris is one of these islands.

Scottish tweed

Scottish tweed is a term often used for tweed originally made in Scotland and woven with very nubby yarns, often with white warp and colored filling. Similar to Irish tweed.

union cloth

A traditional name for fabric made from two or more different fibers, such as a fabric woven with a wool worsted warp and a cotton filling. The term "union cloth" was used primarily when this fabric was used for underwear, perhaps because a union suit was another name for shoulder-to-ankle, one-piece underwear. See union suit.


The term unravel means the same as ravel. lt is the tendency of fabric to come unwoven or unknitted at unfinished edges. Loosely woven fabrics tend to unravel more than those made of tight weaves. Occasionally, the tendency to unravel is desirable in order to create a fringed edge.


Velvet is a fabric with a short and closely woven nap. The production of velvet varies between two methods. One uses a double-cloth construction in which two shifts of fabric are woven with long threads joining them together. After the double fabric is woven, the center threads are cut, producing two pieces of velvet. The second method of producing velvet uses wires. During the weaving the yarn is lifted over the wires to form the pile. After removing the wires the yarn is cut to form the velvet surface. While velvet was originally made of silk, today many other fibers are used to manufacure velvet (e.g. rayon or nylon).

cisele velvet

Cisele velvet is a satin weave fabric. A velvet pattern is woven in.

velvet rug

A floor covering woven on a plain harness loom with Cut pile. It has solid color or printed pile.

warp printing

A printing method in which only the warp yarns are printed with a design before the fabric is woven. A hazy, grayed effect is produced. The resulting fabric has a wavy, shadowy effect. lt is also called shadow printing.


A strong, narrow fabric made from jute or man-made fibers. It is used for belts and straps that must resist strain. Webbing is usually woven and is used on the underside of upholstered chairs and sofas.


Another name for filling, the crosswise thread that interlaces with the warp threads on a woven fabric. Other names are woof, shoot, and shute.


A fabric in any fiber mixture or blend that has a white woven-in design on a white background. Usually, it is a fabric with a white dobby or Jacquard design on a white ground, common in madras, broadcloth, or nylon. See madras.

wide wale

In knitted fabrics, the wale is a row of toops lying lengthwise on the fabric. In woven fabrics, wale is a series of ribs or ridges usually running lengthwise on the fabric. Wale describes the pile ribs found on corduroy fabrics. Wide wale describes one of the different types of ribs in corduroy. See corduroy, velveteen, and pile.


A jacket made of a closely woven fabric: or a fabric treated with a finish designed to prevent the passage of air. The fabric used in windbreakers offen has a degree of water repellency because of its tight construction.


Another name for filling, the crosswise thread that interlaces with the warp threads on a woven fabric. Other names are weft, shoot, and shute. See filling.

woven seersucker

Woven seersucker is a crinkly and stripy cotton fabric made by weaving some of the yarns in tighter tension than others.


A garment closure made of interlocking teeth attached to strips of fabric known as the zipper tape. Zippers were originally made of metal, but are now available with polyester or nylon molded teeth on a woven or knit polyester tape. Most zippers are attached to garments by stitching the zipper tape to the garment seam. Invisible zippers do not show once they are attached to the garment because the teeth of an invisible zipper are covered by the zipper tape and hidden in the seam of the garment. Zippers come in every size and color and can be used functionally or decoratively.