Sometimes when you're reading through item descriptions, you'll come across the name or "type" of fabric, and the percentage used in a piece of clothing. Many you'll already know a little of, but the lesser known fabrics can leave you wondering so we we'd like to help you out below with a brief description. Let us know if you'd like us to add a fabric you don't see below.
Some Acrylic is used in clothing as a less expensive alternative to cashmere, due to the similar feeling of the materials. Acrylic is washable, and is generally hypoallergenic.
It is desired in heat-retention applications because the fabric is one of the least breathable forms of textiles in the world, hence, it is commonly used in athletic equipment, and it's common to see tracksuits, hoodies, and athletic pants made from acrylic fabric.
Often referred to as Poplin, Broadcloth is a medium-weight cotton fabric that's tightly woven, doesn't stretch and is very sturdy. It has a somewhat coarser texture and softer feel and may be a bit thicker than Poplin. Broadcloth is a little thin and light for pants but can be used for shirts, blouses, and skirts.
Cashmere is made of a natural fiber woven from goat hair.
Dry-clean cashmere as much as possible. If this is not an option, consider hand-washing with baby shampoo.
Never hang cashmere scarves or sweaters. Instead, fold them to make sure they retain their shape.
Cotton is a natural fiber and most cotton fabrics are “pre-shrunk”, which makes them highly durable.
EVA can produce materials that are rubber-like in flexibility and softness and can be resistant to stress-cracking, UV radiation, and damage resulting from very high or very low temperatures. Often used to make waterproof raincoats.
Lace is a delicate fabric made from yarn or thread. Today cotton thread and synthetic fibers are both used to make a decorative fabric used to accent and embellish clothing.
Made from animal hides or skins. Cowhide is the most popular animal skin used for leather. It's durable, wrinkle-resistant, and can take on many different looks and feels based on the type of animal, grade, and treatment.
A natural fabric made from flax, a surprisingly light and breezy fabric that keeps you cool in hot weather, and, like cotton, is machine-washable.
Rayon also known as Viscose is a textile semi-synthetic fabric made from wood pulp and treated with chemicals.
It's cool and comfortable, but loses its crispness, as well as bleed and/or shrink, when washed.
Hand-wash in cold water with mild detergent if dry-cleaning is not an option. Air dry and iron when slightly damp.
Silk another natural fiber feels exquisite, but is quite delicate to handle and difficult to clean because of the many fabric weaves that may tighten or pucker when washed.
\When washing, be sure to follow the garment labels. Dry-clean as much as possible. If hand-washing is an available option, use products formulated especially for delicate fabrics.
To dry silk garments, roll them in a towel to press out the moisture and hang to dry. Press with a warm iron.
Synthetics (Polyester, Nylon, Spandex, etc.)
Synthetic fabrics don’t have the risk of shrinkage and are resistant to water-based stains. However, are conducive to static electricity.
Polyester is considered the “wonder fiber” of the 20th century, durable and easy-to-wash. Iron on low heat to keep the fibers from melting.
Spandex, an elastic fiber used in sportswear because of its flexibility and resistance to wear and tear. Avoid bleach and hot water when washing.
Velvet is a soft, luxurious fabric, has a beautiful drape and a unique soft and shiny appearance and is popular for evening wear and dresses for special occasions.
Cotton, linen, wool, mohair, and synthetic fibers can also be used to make velvet.
Natural wool is woven from animal fur, a great natural insulator and really easy to dye.
Wool knits need to be dry-cleaned, but may be hand-washable in cool water depending on the label.
Garments made of lined wool look best when dry-cleaned once a month. Be sure to remove the surface soil a damp cloth and refresh by hanging from a padded hanger.