Fabrics and Fibers

Article Highlight: Rubber as Fashion Fabric

Natural rubber (caoutchouc) comes from latex, the milky secretions of tropical plants that coagulate on exposure to air. Prior to European discovery, the indigenous peoples of South and Central America used rubber… Keep reading »

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Colorful Fibers

Textiles are an important part of fashion history. Looking at the fabrics and fibers used to make a particular garment can provide you with a wealth of information, including approximately when it was created and where it was made. Increase your knowledge of the world of fashion by learning about the various materials used to make apparel.

Materials Used in Fashion

Clothing and other fashion items can be made from many types of materials. Learn about some of the most common and historically significant options, including:

  • Wool: Learn about various types of wool fibers used to make clothing, such as angora and tweed.
  • Silk: Discover where silk comes from, as well as find out how it is made and used in apparel.
  • Acrylic: Get information about acrylic and modacrylic fibers used to make modern fabrics like taffeta and in blended materials.
  • Luxury fibers: Learn about how luxury textiles like lace have been used throughout history to add aesthetic appeal to apparel.
  • Modern materials: Find out about interesting uses of modern textiles in apparel, such as techno-textiles and the use of rubber as fashion fabric.

Making Fabric

People figured out how to make fabric to create material using handwoven techniques to make clothing long before it was possible to commercially manufacture material and yarn.

  • Discover information about original fabric-making techniques, from the earliest uses of a manual loom for spinning, as well as fabrics used in homespun clothing.
  • Find out about knitting techniques, including hand-knitting with needles and the knitting machinery used in mass-production of sweaters, socks and other items.
  • Learn about nonwoven textiles and the production processes used to create these types of fabrics, which are popular options for modern apparel.

Many Options

There are so many different types of fabrics and fibers, and the processes by which they are made has changed significantly over time. It can be just fascinating to learn about the techniques used to create prehistoric textiles and how textiles developed in Andean and Byzantine cultures as it is to consider modern manufacturing processes for making things like olefin fibers. When you're looking to learn more on this fascinating topic, let LoveToKnow Fashion History be your go-to resource.

Fabrics and Fibers