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Fiber Strength

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Bamboo

From bamboo plant. Soft & durable.

Cotton

From the cotton plant. Every weight, every woven and every knit. Often blended.

Linen

From the flax plant. Strong, smooth, absorbent and crisp. Often blended.

Silk

From silkworm cacoon. Strong but delicate looking.

Wool

From sheep. Warm and resilient when dry.

Acrylic

Synthetic wool.

Acetate

Synthetic woven. Lustrous, weak, "one-time wear". Often used for lining.

Nylon

Strongest synthetic fiber. Non-absorbent, often used in blends to strengthen.

Polyester

From petroleum products. Most common synthetic fiber. Holds oily stains and non-absorbent. Often blended.

Rayon

From cellulose, inexpensive, soft, and comfortable.

Spandex/Lycra

Very stretchy knit with great ability to return to original length.
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Fabric created by interlacing long threads passing in one direction with others at a right angle to them.

Broadcloth

Cotton or cotton synthetic blend, lightweight.

Brocade

Jacquard weave with oil over woven pattern.

Challis

Light, plain weave fabric of wool, rayon, cotton, or blends.

Chambray

Plain weave cotton with dyed warp and white weft.

Chenille

Soft yarn with pile on all sides.

Corduroy

Cotton weft-pile fabric woven and then cut to make vertical ribs.

Crepe

Very twisted yams woven to produce a dull crinkled surface.

Damask

Firm fabric of jacquard weave similar to brocade.

Denim

strong, twill weave fabric made with colored warp and white weft.

Douppioni

Lustrous slubbed silk.

Duck/Canvas

Heavy, tightly woven fabric in plain or ribbed weaves.

Faille

Fine, closely woven fabric with cross-wise rib.

Flannel

Plain weave fabric of soft cotton brushed on the face of the fabric.

Flannelette

Plain weave fabric of soft cotton brushed on the face of the fabric.

Gabardine

Strong, hand finished, medium to heavyweight fabric in a twill weave.

Gingham

Plain weave fabric with dyed yarns woven in checked patterns.

Houndstooth

Small combination of twill weave and dyed yams on warp and weft.

Ikat

Warp threads of fabric are dyed then woven which makes a shadowy effect.

Jacquard

An intricate patterned weave with a raised surface.

Muslin

Inexpensive cotton in a plain weave and different weights.

Oxford

Cotton or cotton blend basket weave shirting fabric.

Pique

Cotton or cotton blend fabric woven with small, raised geometric patterns.

Sateen

Satin weave in cotton or cotton blends.

Satin

Luxurious, heavy, expensive fabric in satin weave.

Seersucker

Lightweight fabric with puckered look.

Taffeta

Crisp, plain weave silk fabric with a shiny surface and lots of rustle.

Terry Cloth

Cotton fabric with loop pile on one or both sides. Very absorbent.

Ticking

Very strong woven fabric, usually colored stripes on white.

Tulle

A fine net of silk or nylon.

Tweed

Woven fabric with a hairy surface and slubs of yam. Hard wearing and warm.

Velvet

Has a short cut pile on the warp thread with a soft texture and lustrous, rich appearance.

Velveteen

Cotton fabric with short cut pile on the weft thread.
Fabric that is created by interwining thread in a series of connected loops.

Double Knit

Knitted fabric made with two needles making both sides dentical. Has excellent body and good recovery.

Fleece

Soft, warm, napped knit. There is regular fleece and sweatshirt fleece. One-way stretch.

Interlock

Fine stable welt knit.

Jersey

Plain weft-knitted fabric.

Sweater Knit

Knit fabric resembling hand-knitting.

Tricot

Fine, warp knit fabric with fine vertical ribs and zigzag effect on back. One-way stretch.

Velour

Knit fabric with a thick short pile. Has lustrous look of velvet or velveteen.

Sheer Wovens

Batiste

Cotton or synthetic woven, lightweight, often sheer.

Chiffon

Lightweight, soft, sheer fabric.

Dotted Swiss

Sheer fabric with small fiber dot.

Georgette

Heavier chiffron and is matte.

Lawn

Sheer, lightweight plain weave fabric in plain colors and prints.

Organdy

A fine, semi-sheer, loose weave of cotton or cotton blend with a crisp finish.

Organza

Sheer, crisp silk organdy with a sheen.

Non-Wovens

Fabric-like material made from long fibers, bonded together by chemical, mechanical, heat or solvent treatment. Some examples are:

Felt

Made of wool, fur, or hair fibers meshed together.

Vinyl

Strong woven or knit base fabric coated with lyvinyl chloride giving a waterproof surface.