Tag Archives: Plain Weave


Part of the ‘Antique Fabrics’ series, this fabric isn’t necessarily extinct, but it was more popular in the past than the present. Close napped, rough surfaced, wool fabric. Dense and hard-wearing, it was a popular choice for overcoats. It’s usually a twill weave, but can be plain-woven too.  Originally made from the wool of Cheviot… Read More »


Gingham fabric is a plain weave cotton or cotton-blend distinguished by a checked pattern which is woven into the fabric – not printed on top. The fabric is completely reversible. The checks can range from 1/8th of an inch wide to a full inch. You’re going to run into this one a lot if you… Read More »

Worsted Wool

Wool’s wool, right? So why is there a special entry for worsted wool? Because all wool is not the same. Worsted refers to a process whereby sheep’s wool is carefully combed to ensure that the fibers spun into yarn are only the longer fibers (long staple) and that they lie parallel to each other before spinning. This results… Read More »


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 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 »


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 »


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 »