Fibre, Fabric & Yarn

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Fibre

Fibres are joined together by the spinning process to form yarns. The twist inserted into the bundle of fibres gives the yarn strength.

 

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Yarn Low Twist

Fluffy yarns with a low twist are used to make soft fluffy fabrics like flannelette. The fibres in flannelette are brushed up out of the surface of the fabric after it has been woven. This finish (brushed finish) gives the fabric extra warmth as the fluffy surface traps in the heat produced by your body.

 

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Yarn High Twist

The higher the twist, the stronger the yarn, and the smoother the resulting fabric. These fabrics are strong and flat and are good for printed designs. This helps to make the fabric cooler to wear as your body heat can transfer through the fabric easily.

 

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Fabric

Yarn are joined together to make fabric. The yarns can be woven on a

loom or knitted by hand or using a knitting machine.

A woven fabric is flat, strong and firm and holds its shape well.

A knitted fabric is stretchy and comfortable to wear, but can sag out of shape and the yarns can snag easily.

 

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Plain Weave

Plain weave is the simplest form of weaving. One yarn goes over one then under one. Because the yarns are tightly interlaced it creates a strong fabric with a smooth surface.

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Warp

Warp yarns run the length of the fabric, parallel to the selvedge. This is the lengthwise grain.

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Weft

Weft or filling yarns travel from side to side (left to right) and are weaker. This is called the crosswise grain.

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Selvedges

Selvedges are the woven edges on either side of the fabric. The selvedge does not unravel or fray.

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Bias

The bias grain is the line that runs at 45º to the selvedge.

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Knitted Fabric

A knitted fabric  is made by looping yarns together in rows. It creates a stretchy fabric that is suitable for items such as underwear, hosiery, swimwear, sportswear, t-shirts, and jumpers. Because the fabric stretches it is comfortable  to wear, moving as the body moves. Knitted clothing can be made without zips and button openings as the garment just stretches on and fits many sizes and shapes. It can be made to fit very tightly.

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