Water, stains, we can repel them all! Radiation, Fire, no problem!
Changing the properties of textiles is the goal of functional finishing.
Besides Luster and Hand, we can change the Design or Texture of fabrics.
Aesthetic finishes are used to change the look or feel of fabric by changing the luster or the hand.
Routine finishes include bleaching, ironing and tentering.
Printing and dyeing can have some quality issues that it is helpful to understand.
Direct printing also includes screen printing and inkjet printing while indirect printing solves a problem we have since the invention of synthetic polymers.
The methods used for printing have developed over time.
We can dye at different stages during the production process. We can use dyes to make designs in a process called “resist printing”.
How do we improve the affinity of dyes for fibers?
We give color to textiles using dyes and pigments.
We don’t need to use fibers to make nonyarn fabrics, we can just use polymers in solution or look to nature.
The nonyarn fabrics usually have fairly descriptive names.
We can make fabrics without using yarns.
Weft and warp knits don’t have warp or weft yarns, but they do go in different directions. The warp knits include tricot and raschel knits.
The weft knits include jersey, rib and purl knits.
Knits are far newer than wovens and borrow vocabulary from wovens.
Double cloths can use 3, 4 or 5 yarns instead of the usual two. Textured weaves, on the other hand, stick to familiar methods to create a subtle pebbly surface.
Pile weaves can be made in so many ways and produce so many fabrics, including velvet, velveteen and corduroy. Plus, let’s dig into carpet!
The Jacquard Weave is pretty fancy, while the Leno weave is pretty dull looking.
The Dobby weave was very popular for several hundred years and remains a great choice for interiors.
The basket weave, twill weave and satin weave are three other types of basic weaves, although the basket weave is actually a plain weave too.
The Basic Weaves start with plain weaves but this is the most diverse category of weaves, despite the plain wrapper.
What sort of properties are built into fabric during weaving and how can we identify them to help us differentiate fabric?
We make fabrics using several methods, but we will focus on weaving for now. How do looms work?
Novelty yarns are just faancy!
What is up with the Venus de Milo? She isn’t Venus! But we love Goddesses of Spinning and Weaving, like Athena, just as much as the Goddess of Love. Spinning was the foundation of several ancient trade cultures.
The Olefin polymer family goes by many other names, but Acrylic is famous for just being itself, and for being our nails!
The first synthetic fiber was nylon followed by polyester, both inveted by scientists at Dupont.
The late 10th century brought an eco-friendly player to the regenerated fiber scene, the generic name for this innovated fiber is lyocell. Oh, we also talk about Acetate, a modified cellulose regenerated fiber.
The regenerated fibers are “manually” made. Manufacturing fibers from naturally concurring polymers, such as cellulose, is a major accomplishment of the 20th century.
We can modify manufactured fibers by adding compounds to the “dope”, we can change their size and cross section, we can add a crimp.
Manufacturing fibers involved either using naturally occurring polymers or synthesizing polymers in the laboratory.
The minor cellulosic fibers include Hemp, Kenaf, Coir and Abaca. Isn’t this fun?
Linen is an ancient fiber with an ancient vocabulary.
Cotton is King and with good reason
What are the good and bad properties of fibers made from cellulose?
Silk is another important protein fiber that has a totally different history and set of properties, despite also being made from polymers of amino acids.
The specialty hair fibers include mohair, cashmere and camel, just to name a few.
This double length episode of the podcast focuses completely on wool, my favorite fiber.
This double length episode of the podcast introduces our first natural fiber, protein fibers, and explains some of the great properties of these fibers, going deep on moisture and moisture regain.
We wrap up our discussion of the internal morphology of fibers, focusing on polymer properties, by considering what the arrangement of polymers into crystalline structures can do for strength, or how cross-linking agents can improve resiliency.
While the surface morphology of fibers is an important influence on properties like luster and hand, it is the internal, chemical structure of the polymers that make up the fibers that has the greatest influence on properties like strength and absorbency.
Fiber crimp deserves its own podcast because it is so cool! This 3D physical property influences lots of things like resiliency, bulk and luster.
Performance properties such as comfort as actually a dimension of performance made up of several properties, including absorbency.
We can categorize fibers using various features, including physical structures (morphology) that we can easily see under a microscope.
Our first podcast focuses on the properties of fibers that make the textiles we make out of these fibers behave in different ways.
A big thank you to Alexandria University in Egypt who invited me to present to their Home Economics students on the topic of textile entrepreneurship. I am sad to say I did not get to visit this cradle of textiles culture in person but thanks to the power of the internet, I was able to present a video to the meeting on “Creativity and Entrepreneurship to Achieve Sustainable Development“. The goal of this meeting was to promote women’s empowerment through small projects. I focused on using the internet to market handicrafts. One of the big challenges in marketing handicrafts made by women from outside the large markets is that they have not had training on marketing and branding so the products they produce don’t necessarily appeal to the consumers. My presentation discusses how to develop an authentic voice in handicrafts in order to “tell a story” about “your local” to consumers who want to have an “authentic experience”.