Top 10 fabrics you need to know about before shopping for your home!
The process of decorating or redecorating your home is not always an easy one. It can be stressful and tedious, but one thing that I am sure of is that it is a personal process. That is why it's best to know some details in advance, right?
YOU DON'T HAVE THE TIME TO READ THIS NOW? NO WORRIES - PIN IT AND SAVE IT FOR A LATER READ. IT IS A MUST, TRUST ME! IT MAKES A WHOLE LOT OF DIFFERENCE TO KNOW THESE THINGS.
Ok, so why all this fuss? Well I am a big believer in tailoring an interior after your own heart and personality. I know that not everybody can afford an interior designer, but I believe everyone has the right to live happily in their home. That is why I wan to provide you with the necessary information that you need, so that you can make the best decisions when it comes to decorating your flat.
What I've prepared for you here is a short list of the most used fabrics in the industry, so that when you do go shopping for soft furnishings of even upholstered furniture, you will know what to buy so that it will last you longer. You can click on the title to see which one is which. Here we go:
The base material from which all textiles and fabrics are made from. In case you are wondering what is the difference between the two, textiles are made from weaving, knitting or felting fibres together, while a fabric is made from one or more textiles put together.
Cotton is a soft fibre obtained from the cotton plant. It is usually spun into yarns and treads, after which it is woven and / or knitted into fabrics. Cotton comes in different types and lengths, but know that the longer the fibre, the better the quality of that cotton will be. Depending on where you are shopping, you can find: American cotton, Egyptian cotton, Indian cotton etc.
A fabric made out of strong yarns spun completely from flax fibres. Flax fibres vary in their lengths from 25 to 150 mm. Linen fabrics feel cool to the touch, smooth and it gets softer to the touch the more it is washed.
Linens are very durable fabrics that are also stronger when they are wet (rather than dry). The fibres do not stretch, so there are resistant to abrasion. However, if the fabric is folded and ironed over the same place repeatedly over time, it will break. This is because linen fibres have a very low elasticity. It is also good to know that linen fabrics have a natural sheen to them and they come in either plain or a patterned weave.
A textile fibre obtained from a sheep. Cashmere and mohair from goat or angora from rabbits, also fall into this category (because in all cases, the fibre is the animal's hair). Wool is spun, knitted or felted. The different types of wool are classified based on their colour, length, fineness or elasticity.
A natural fibre forming the cocoons made by silk worms. The flat surface of the fibre reflects lights, hence its natural sheen. Silk has a soft and non-slippery texture, unlike many synthetic fibres. It is one of the strongest fibres. However, it loses around 20% of its strength when wet. Silk is also a poor conductor of electricity, thus it is prone to static cling. It doesn't react well in direct sunlight and because of this it can start to rot overtime.
A fabric with a very smooth, shiny face and a dull back. Made traditionally from silk, but synthetic fabrics are also being used today. It is mostly used in making bed sheets.
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A very thin fabric. It is usually fully or partially transparent. The types of sheer vary based on the number of layers it has: from layers (very rare, very thin, barely visible) to 15 (standard sheer), up to 30 (semi-opaque) until 100 layers (opaque). Most commonly used in curtains, with the purpose of providing protection from the sun by letting light through at the same time, while offering a level of privacy.
A fabric made from the fleece of the Angora goat. It is the most durable out of all textiles. It is woven in combination with cotton, wool, linen or silk into many types of fabrics. It is widely used for upholstery.
A tufted woven fabric with a short, soft and thick warp pile surface. It is usually made from silk or cotton. The velvet is often double woven and while still being on the look, it is cut in the middle with a knife or different tool. Velvet can be very difficult to clean (due to its pile), but with modern day dry cleaning techniques, it has become easier to maintain the fabric.
A leather made from the underside of the skin A leather made from the underside of the skin, primarily from lamb, but also from goat, deer or calf. A suede leather does not have the tough exterior skin layer, thus it's less durable than actual leather. It also has a quite different sheen to it than real leather (so that another thing to look for if you want to shop the real thing). A suede get dirty quickly and it it absorbs liquids.
The product of spinning the fibre, be it wool, cotton, silk, linen or a synthetic. Several yarns together make a THREAD. The yarns are then used for weaving, knitting or any other textile production methods.
A method of fabric making. A pattern of interlacing warp and weft at right angles in a woven fabric. Similar methods include knitting and felting.
In weaving, it is the vertical thread on a loom, that goes over and under the weft thread in order to make a cloth.
In weaving, it is the horizontal thread on a loom, that goes over and under the warp thread in order to make a cloth.
So there you have it, detail lovers! 10 of the most important fabrics used in the industry, plus a couple of terms so that you know your way around when you do go shopping for home "goodies".
Want to know more about a certain fabric that you have not seen here or in the completed list? Let me know here or on our Facebook Page, and I'll be happy to do the research and come back to you. Just let me know. Until then, do grab your list and share your fabric experience with me on Instagram by using @detailmovement or #detailmovementtribe.
All images that are credited as '©Detail Movement', are done by Raluca Vaduva for Detail Movement. All rights reserved. All pictures that are not my own, I credit them to the best of my knowledge & research, to their online sources. I do not claim ownership over them in any way.