Sew, What's New?

Curating sewing and quilting talent, techniques, and tutorials, since 1997.

Filament Fibers and Weaves

Some fabrics are known as “filament fibers.” Silk is the only naturally occurring filament. To understand how man-made filaments are fabricated, think of a pot of goo that gets strained through a shower head. The shape of the holes in the strainer (“spinneret”) determine the fabric’s characteristics, like luster, bulk, and body (or “hand”).

When fabric is woven of threads, the lengthwise (known as “warp”) threads are laid down on the loom first, and then the crosswise (“weft”) threads are woven through. You can remember this by recalling that “a” comes before “e” in the alphabet, and warp threads come before weft. Warp are lengthwise threads laid down first, weft threads are woven through crosswise. Warp threads are stronger than weft threads, which is why most garments are cut on the straight grain, with the warp threads running lengthwise for strength and stability.

There are also differences in the manner in which threads are woven. Remember weaving construction paper strips into a placemat? In the same way, regular over-and-under construction is a Plain Weave. Going over four or more crosswise strands at once creates a Satin Weave. Sateen, on the other hand, has weft threads floating over four or more warp threads. The reason Satins and Sateens have a sheen? Because light gets reflected from the longer surface of these floating threads.


Londa has sewn all her life and holds a B.S. in Home Economics.  She developed her own pattern line in heirloom sewing in the late 80's, then a retail storefront from 1990 to 1993, and she now maintains her own website,  Her most recent focus and passion is teaching others how to create stylish jackets from sweatshirts.  You can read more about Londa's many sewing accomplishments here, and feel free as well to visit her video channel and profile page at Sew What's New.  


Londa is also the author of "Sweatshirt Transformations"



C&T Publishing.
Release Date: August 13, 2012

Pre-Order NOW for your personally - autographed copy and the special THANK YOU offer below.

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