Textile Glossary - E

EASE-OF-CARE: A term used to characterize fabrics that, after laundering, can be restored to their original appearance with a minimum of ironing or other treatment. An ease-of-care fabric generally wrinkles only slightly upon laundering. (Also see DURABLE PRESS and WASHAND-WEAR.)


EDGE CRIMPING: See TEXTURING, Edge Crimping Method.

EDGE ROLL: The curl that develops on the edge of a single-knit fabric preventing it from lying flat.

ELASTICITY: The ability of a strained material to recover its original size and shape immediately after removal of the stress that causes deformation.

ELASTICIZED FABRIC: A fabric that contains elastic threads. Such fabrics are used for girdles, garters, and similar items.

Textile Glossary - D


DAMASK: A firm, glossy, Jacquard-patterned fabric that may be made from linen, cotton, rayon, silk, or a combination of these with various manufactured fibers. Similar to brocade, but flatter and reversible, damask is used for napkins, tablecloths, draperies, and upholstery.

DAMPENING (IN TIRE CORD): The relative ability to absorb energy and deaden oscillation after excitation.


DECATING MARK: A crease mark or impression extending fillingwise across the fabric near the beginning or end of the piece.

DECATIZING: A finishing process in which fabric, wound tightly on a perforated roller, either has hot water circulated through it (wet decatizing), or has steam blown through it (dry decatizing). The process is aimed chiefly at improving the hand and removing wrinkles.

DECITEX: One tenth of a tex.

DECORTICATING: A mechanical process for separating the woody matter from the bast fiber of such plants as ramie and hemp.

DEEP-DYEING VARIANTS: Polymers that have been chemically modified to increase their dyeability. Fibers and fabrics made therefrom can be dyed to very heavy depth.

DEFECTS: A general term that refers to some flaw in a textile product that detracts from either performance or appearance properties.

DEFORMATION: A change in the shape of a specimen, e.g., an increase in length produced as the result of the application of a tensile load or force. Deformation may be immediate or delayed, and the latter may be recoverable or nonrecoverable.

DEGRADATION: The loss of desirable physical properties by a textile material as a result of some process or physical/chemical phenomenon.

DEGREE OF ESTERIFICATION: The extent to which the acid groups of terephthalic and/or other acids have reacted with diols to form ester groups in polyester polymer production.

Textile Glossary - C

CABINET: A basic part of the manufactured-fiber spinning machine where, in dry spinning, the filaments become solidified by solvent evaporation and, in melt spinning, the filaments are solidified by cooling.

CABLED YARN: A yarn formed by twisting together two or more plied yarns.

CABLE STITCH: A knit effect produced by crossing a group of stitches over a neighboring stitch group.

CABLE TWIST: A construction of thread, yarn, cord, or rope in which each successive twist is in the direction opposite the preceding twists; i.e., and S/Z/S or Z/S/Z construction.
CALENDER: A machine used in finishing to impart a variety of surface effects to fabrics. A calender essentially consists of two or more heavy rollers, sometimes heated, through which the fabric passes under heavy pressure.
CALENDERING: A mechanical finishing process for fabrics to produce special effects, such as high luster, glazing, moiré, and embossed effects. In this operation, the fabric is passed between heated rolls under pressure.

CALENDERING ROLLS: 1. The main cylinders on a calender. 2. Smooth or fluted rolls used on carious fiber-processing machines such as pickers and cards to compress the lap or sliver as it passes between them.

CALICO: A plain, closely woven, inexpensive cloth, usually cotton or a cotton/manufactured fiber blend, characteristically having figured patterns on a white or contrasting background. Calico is typically used for aprons, dresses, and quilts.

Textile Glossary - B

BACKCOATING: The application of latex or adhesive to the back of a carpet to anchor the tufts, usually followed immediately by addition of a secondary backing material such as woven jute or nonwoven polypropylene.

BACKED CLOTH: A material with an extra warp or filling added for weight and warmth. Satin-weave and twill-weave constructions are frequently used in the design of backed cloth because they are relatively resistant to the passage of air.

BACKFILLING: A solution composed of varying amounts of cornstarch, China clay, talc, and tallow that is applied to the back side of low-grade, low-cost cloth to change its hand, improve its appearance, and increase its weight.

  1. A general term for any system of yarn which interlaces on the back of a textile material. 
  2. A knit or woven fabric or plastic foam bonded to a face fabric. 
  3. A knot or woven fabric bonded to a vinyl or other plastic sheet material. 


Textile Glossary - A

ABNORMAL CRIMP: A relative term for crimp that is either too low or too high in frequency and/or amplitude or that has been put into the fiber with improper angular characteristics.

ABRADED YARN: A filament yarn in which filaments have been cut or broken to create hairiness (fibrillation) to simulate the surface character of spun yarns. Abraded yarns are usually plied or twisted with other yarns before use.

ABRASION MARK: An area where a fabric has been damaged by friction.

ABRASION RESISTANCE: The ability of a fiber or fabric to withstand surface wear and rubbing.

ABSORBANCE: The ability of a substance to transform radiant energy into a different form, usually with a resulting rise in temperature. Mathematically, absorbance is the negative logarithm to the base 10 of transmittance.

ABSORBENCY: The ability of one material to take up another material.

ABSORPTION: The process of gases or liquids being taken up into the pores of a fiber, yarn, or fabric. (Also see ADSORPTION.)

ACCELERANT: A chemical used to speed up chemical or other processes. For example, accelerants are used in dyeing triacetate and polyester fabrics.