Definitions & descriptions of unusual types of fabric & cloth
Acetate - A synthetic fabric made from cellulose that has a silky, luxurious appearance. It dries easily and resists absorbing moisture. Most acetate fabrics will need to be dry cleaned for their care, however some newer pieces of clothing are being made with acetate knits and can be machine-washed.Acetate - A synthetic fabric made from cellulose that has a silky, luxurious appearance. It dries easily and resists absorbing moisture. Most acetate fabrics will need to be dry cleaned for their care, however some newer pieces of clothing are being made with acetate knits and can be machine-washed.
Acrylic - A synthetic or manufactured fiber that is both soft and lightweight. It dries easily and is machine washable. Acrylics are popular because of their ability to retain their shape and texture after washing and drying, however they can pill easily.
Brocade - A rich, heavy silk textured fabric with elaborate design and raised patterns.
Charmeuse - A luxury fabric made from silk with a satin finish. It flows well on the body and catches light in stunning patterns. The fabric is also extremely lightweight, and it has a glossy appearance and extremely soft texture. The fabric does need to be handled with care, since it is very fragile. Charmeuse can be hand washed with cold water and laid out flat to dry.
Chiffon - A sheer silk, polyester or rayon crepe fabric. Chiffon is one of several special occasion fabrics in the same range as taffeta, organza, and velvet. These fabrics require careful and focused care if you consider them an investment.
Cire’ - A nylon, polyester, rayon or silk fabric that has been processed with heat and pressure to produce a glazed finish. This fabric has a lustrous patent leather look.
Cotton - A natural, vegetable fiber obtained from the seed-pod of the cotton plant that is easily washed and/or dry cleaned. Cotton, in general, is very strong, drape able, elastic and absorbent.
Elastane – Another name for spandex.
Georgette - A textile traditionally made from silk, although synthetic fibers such as polyester are sometimes used. What makes georgette fabric distinctive is the crinkly crepe-light texture, which feels slightly rough and dull, but gives the fabric a bouncy, flowing look.
Jacquard - A an intricately woven variegated fabric woven on a special loom.
Jersey - A plain weft-knitted fabric of wool, cotton, nylon or silk.
Lamé - A fabric in which metallic threads are interwoven. The distinctive metallic sheen of this eye-catching tissue lame fabric never fails to impress. This fabric may be machine washed in cold, but never ironed.
Leather - A natural fabric made of the dressed or tanned hide of an animal. Leather fabric is soft, elastic and firm. It is blessed with the quality of absorbing water vapor without losing dryness and retaining to the original shape when stretched.
Lycra - DuPont’s spandex that stretches 5 times in length with full recovery to enhance fit and performance characteristics. Hand or machine wash in lukewarm water. Never use chlorine bleach on any fabric containing Lycra. Either drip dry or machine dry using low temperature settings.
Microfiber - Acrylic, nylon and polyester microfibers are synthetic fibers that measure less than one denier. Microfibers are machine washable, machine dryable or dry cleanable.
Muslin - A plain, woven fine cotton.
Nylon - A synthetic fabric that is strong and lightweight made from high-strength, resilient synthetic polymers. Nylon is elastic, easy to wash and is quite lustrous. It’s very strong and durable, resistant to both abrasion and damage from many chemicals. It returns easily to it's original shape and is non-absorbent. It is fast drying, resistant to some dyes, and resistant to moths and other insects, water, perspiration and standard dry-cleaning agents. Most items made from nylon can be machined washed and tumbled dried at low temperatures.
Organza - A sheer, stiff fabric made of silk or nylon.
Pashmina - A fine goat's wool fabric used for making shawls.
Piqué - A stiff durable corded fabric of cotton, rayon or silk.
Polyamide - Another name for nylon.
Polyester - A wrinkle-resistant fabric of fibers made from any of numerous synthetic polymers. It is lightweight, strong and resistant to creasing, shrinking, stretching, mildew and abrasion. It is easily washable and is not damaged by sunlight or weather and is resistant to moths and mildew.
Ramie - A strong lustrous fabric resembling linen or silk.
Rayon - A soft and comfortable fabric that absorbs well and has few static and pilling problems, however it may be prone to shrinkage. There are both dry clean only and washable rayon fabrics on the market today. The only difference in these rayon fabrics is their finishing stages.
Satin - A smooth fabric made of silk or rayon, woven with a glossy face and a dull back.
Silk - A natural filament fiber produced by the silkworm in cocoon. It is soft, crisp, luxurious and has a brilliant sheen. It is very strong, absorbent, highly drape able and well suited for tailoring. Dry cleaning is preferred. Hand washing is possible if mild soap and lukewarm water is used.
Spandex - A synthetic fiber known for its exceptional stretch ability. It is lightweight, soft, smooth and supple and provides a combination of comfort and fit while it prevents bagging and sagging. Hand or machine wash in lukewarm water and do not use chlorine bleach. Either drip dry or machine dry using low temperature settings.
Supplex - A DuPont certified nylon fabric which has a soft cotton-like hand with high water and wind resistant properties, high abrasion and tear resistant. Hand or machine wash in lukewarm water, and do not use chlorine bleach. Either drip dry or machine dry using low temperature settings.
Taffeta - A lustrous fabric which may be made from silk, nylon or rayon and is very soft and smooth to the touch. Taffeta can be very stiff and crisp, generating rustling sounds when people move in it. This delicate fabric requires special care.
Terrycloth - A cotton and linen pile. Longwearing, easy to launder and requires no ironing. May be bleached, dyed, or printed. Better qualities have a close, firm, under weave, with very close loops.
Velour - A cotton fabric that has a deeper pile than velveteen and is heavier in weight.
Velvet - A soft fabric, such as silk, rayon, or nylon, having a smooth, short dense pile and a plain underside. Velvet is a beautiful and luxurious fabric to own but you must provide extra attention to the care and maintenance of this fabric. Most knit velvets must be dry-cleaned but some panné and other crushed velvet fabrics can be machine-washed.
Velveteen - A pile fabric that generally has a shorter pile than true velvet.
Vinyl - A tough, synthetic, flexible, shiny plastic fabric derived from ethylene. Hand wash and air dry only.
Specially made combination fabrics for some of our evening gowns:
Nylon Spandex Supplex with Metallic Spray - Same as our regular nylon spandex but with an extra hint of drama- Silver spray with long last staying power gives a glamorous metallic sheen.
Silk Satin Spandex - Luxurious silk with a bit of stretch. This elegant, sophisticated fabric has a rich feel. Hand wash or dry clean only.
Glitter Slinky - Stand out with this festive fabric. Glitter sparkles beautifully in the dark and has a hypnotic appeal when it catches the light. Fabric is somewhat delicate- wash first before wearing- some residual glitter may fall off (Not machine washable).
Squiggle Sequin - This fabric has serious bling! Tiny delicate sequins scattered over matching stretch fabric- will be sure to get some serious attention.
Metallic Slinky - Look like a divine statue in this jersey fabric with a metallic coating- looks like liquid metal and gold. Decadent and fabulous!
Always remember to refer to the garment’s tag for specific washing instructions and care.