Category Archives: Woven Material

Piqué

Piqué is a type of weaving, not a specific fabric – just like twill and jacquard. Like jacquard, it is made on a special loom, called a dobby loom. Hence, fabrics of this type are known as dobby weaves. (If you’re thinking about house elves right now, that makes two of us.) Piqué weaving creates… Read More »

Muslin

Muslin is a light-weight plain-weave fabric, usually made of pure cotton. It’s usually sold bleached white or in an unbleached state, which is off-white. It can be made very sheer indeed, or about as heavy as your average bedsheet. It’s good fabric for lightweight garments and accessories handkerchiefs and petticoats, for instance. Beyond that, you’re… Read More »

Taffeta

Taffeta is a plain-weave fabric with a very stiff – or crisp – hand. It has a very distinctive rustle when it moves and heavier weights will stand away from the body when gathered to any degree. It’s gorgeous stuff and I love it. Historically, taffeta was made from silk – here’s a separate entry about silk… Read More »

Jacquard

Oh boy, another HUGE term. Why? Because jacquard is a type of weaving, but the term has also come to mean the fabric produced by that weave. By the way, if you’re a computer geek, look up jacquard looms. Some folks maintain they were the first computers. They revolutionized the textile industry back in the… Read More »

Lawn

No, not the patch of ground currently turning brown outside my place… Lawn is a lightweight woven fabric with a sheer surface. It’s not as sheer as organdy and organza, but it’s lighter than muslin. Historically, lawn was made from linen yarns but today it’s usually made from mercerized cotton. Mercerized cotton – sometimes called… Read More »

Crinoline

Crinoline is a fabric, as well as the name for a garment made from the same fabric AND the name of some particularly over-engineered Victorian underwear. We’ll sort them all out, here. Crinoline fabric is a open-mesh fabric, made from 100% cotton, 100% polyester or 100% nylon – blends exist, but they’re less common. The… Read More »

Corduroy

Let me just this get out of my system right away. Did you hear about the new corduroy pillows? They’re making headlines! Whew. Thanks. Corduroy is a woven fabric that features a fuzzy pile, just like velvet (the difference between nap and pile). But while velvet’s pile is sheared all the same length, corduroy is… Read More »

Barkcloth

Originally, the term barkcloth referred to a non-woven material made from the strips of inner bark of certain trees (variety depending on place of manufacture). Strips were peeled and pounded together into a serviceable fabric. Today, barkcloth usually refers to a soft, dense, plain-weave – usually of cotton or a cotton/rayon blend – with a texture… Read More »

Organza

Organza. Otherwise known as that sheer that isn’t organdy. Although they’re often confused with each other, organza is very different from organdy. Yes, they’re both sheer lightweight fabrics made from tightly-twisted yarns. They can both be pretty crisp and can look hecka fun when gathered up. But that’s where the similarity ends. Organza is most… Read More »

Silk Taffeta

I know I’ve already written about taffeta in general, but I wanted to give a quick shout-out to silk taffeta in particular. Mostly because it’s one of my favorite fabrics. Silk taffeta is usually light to very light weight – silk is expensive and heavy weight silk is even more so, so textile mills stick… Read More »