Cutting through the jargon
This glossary is a resource aimed at helping share and simplify both generic and industry specific information, expertise and knowledge. This service is provided as a committment to visitors to our site and the industry as whole. Although we aim to ensure that all the content is correct, please bear in mind that some areas of the industry move fast and terminology and its application can change.
A kind of tunic or jacket, worn shorts and fastened under the armpits.
Woven woollen fabric napped to resemble felt.
An outer garment, worn by men, related in shape to the coat-like ashcan.
First half of 17th century, cloak or cape with wide collar, in France named after a military hero.
A design of stripes that are even in width and spacing.
A machine used for opening cotton direct from a bale. Layers of compressed cotton are taken from a bale and fed into a machine where the tearing action of two coarse spiked rollers moving in opposite directions, produces a more open mass of tufts.
An indistinct twill or broken rib- usually a twilled hopsack weave- with a fine textured ,slightly pebbled surface . Often of silk or silk blended with wool, used for neckties, women's fine suits and coats men's and women's evening wear
Originally referred to fabric made from the bark of trees originally worn as tribal costumes in East Africa. The fabric would not be washed and the garment may be passed down through generations.
A cationic dye characterized by its substantivity for basic-dyeable acrylic and basic-dyeable polyester fibres, especially the former. The term was originally applied to tannin-mordant cotton dyes.
A variation of plain weave in which 2 or more yarns in both the warp and weft are woven side by side to resemble a basket.
Mid-17th century. French word for short tabs at bodices and male doublets that extended below the waist. Those jackets with basques were worn in combination with skirts instead of gowns.
A traditional Indonesian dyeing process in which portions of fabric are coated with wax and therefore resist the dye. The process can be repeated to achieve multi-color designs. Fabric usually has a veined appearance where the dye has gone through the cracks in the wax.
1. A sheer, fine, soft, light weight, plain weave fabric usually of combed cotton or polyester/cotton. It often has lengthwise streaks due to the use of 2 ply yarns. Used for shirts blouses dresses nightwear and lingerie. 2. A lightweight smooth all wool fabric. 3.a sheer silk fabric.
Beaver skins that were traded for blankets in Canada in the 17,18 and 19th century.
A woven fabric constructed to show pronounced rounded cords in the warp direction with sunken lines between them. Used in trousers, uniforms, hats, upholstery.
Any direction in the fabric which does not exactly flow in the direction of the weft yarn (vertical yarns) or warp yarns (horizontal yarns) of a fabric. A true bias makes an angle of 45 degree across the length and width of a fabric, fabric cut on a bias has maximum stretch.
Bin (Blend Bin)
A holding area where the fibre in blown into and mixed. Vertical slices of the fibre are then taken a blown to the next bin to ensure good mixing.
A large vividly colored plaid design such as those often found on blankets.
See cocoon strippings, also termed keba.
Jacket plain or striped often in the colours of a school, club,association or company. Possibly originally jacket worn by crew of H.M.S Blazer.
Chemical treatment to remove impurities and whiten the fabric. It can be done either in preparation for dyeing and finishing or to obtain clean whites in finished fabric.
The procedure for improving whiteness of a material by removing natural colour. Hydrogen peroxide is often used as the oxidizing agent.
Blend / Blending
A process or processes concerned primarily with efficient mixing of various lots of fibres. Hainsworth blend different wools; to ensure consistency of raw material over time and; to obtain the benefits of the properties of different types of wool in the finished product. Selecting the correct wools for a blend is the job of the wool buyer and take many years of knowledge to perfect.
The process of fabric through a dye cycle without any dyestuff. For example Hainsworth may blind dye Nomex in order to crystallize the fibre.
A hand printing method using wood, metal, or linoleum blocks. The design is carved on the blocks , one block for each color. The dye is applied to the block which is pressed or hammered against the fabric.
A wool or wool blend fabric, woven or knitted which has been given a course, crepey texture by heavy felting or by putting it in a high temperature bath.
Hainsworth boil face fabrics for 8 hrs in order to set the direction of the wool fibres in the cloth.
A process used to clean down dye vessels for light shades.
A single roll or piece of cloth.
Breaking elongation; breaking extension
The elongation, or extension, of a substance at its breaking load.
Breaking strength load; breaking force
The load that develops the breaking tension. The recommended unit of measurement is the newton.
Refers to a coating that repels water but allows water vapor (thus perspiration) to pass through, allowing garments to be comfortable and waterproof . Used in garments for active wear and winter sports.
Lace embroidered on an open net with heavy often brightly colored yarn. May be made by hand or machine. Said to have originated in the Breton region of France.
Descriptive of textile materials, particularly man-made fibres, the natural lustre of which has not been substantially reduced. Bright may denote the presence of a very small amount of delustrant, insufficient to reduce the lustre of the fibre significantly.
A fine soft woven wool fabric, plain or twill weave, with a smooth napped face.
A general term for twill weave fabrics in which the twill line changes direction.
A finishing process to raise a nap on surface of the fabric using wire brushes, teasels or other abrasive materials.
A stiff , open weave, coarse fabric often used as an interlining to give a garment shape. Also used in hats, bookbinding.
A bold check pattern with blocks of 2 or 3 contrasting colors. The red and black is the common Buffalo Check which was made famous by Woolrich, Pennsylvania.
A yarn that has been treated mechanically, physically or chemically so as to have a noticeably greater voluminosity or bulk.
A plain, drapey, loosely woven fabric most often used for flags and decoration. Also called banner cloth.
A coarse open fabric made of jute used for upholstery lining and bagging . When dyed or printed it is used in drapery, wall coverings, upholstery.
A wool trade term to describe the removal of imperfections (burls) from a fabric.
A fabric made of 2 fibers then printed with a chemical that dissolves one of the fibers thus creating a design .Often done on velvet.
Wool contaminated with vegetable impurities adhering to the fleece.
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