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Ask Netfah: Types of Fabric Grain

ask netfah adviceDearNetfah,

Though I  know that certain fabrics are more suitable for projects than other ones and have identified the general difference between natural fabrics and man-made ones, I admit I still have alot left to learn about how to properly care for them, various construction techniques,  and how to determine how a Fabric will drape or hang. On this note, I’m wondering what you can tell me about a fabrics ‘grain‘?

~Curious George, Mobile-Alabama

Dear Curious George,

Fabric Grain is a term that refers to the direction in which threads are arranged in a particular fabric. It will determine haw a fabric will react, drape or hang. It’s important to know which way the grain is running, because fabric that is off-grain when you are cutting pattern pieces can cause your completed project to stretch out of shape. If your Fabric Grain is off a little bit  it won’t affect your project, but if it’s off by too much your designs won’t line up when you’re trying to match panels and your seams can bunch or stretch because they’re actually being sewn too close to the bias.

When a fabric is “on-grain,” the lengthwise and crosswise threads are at an exact right angle to each other. Woven fabrics always follow the grain because they are made with the actual warp and weft threads. With printed fabrics, their designs are printed on top of the woven threads. So the grain can be off and the pattern can still look okay.

There are (3) basic types of fabric grain:

  1. Crosswise : These threads run perpendicular to the edge of the fabric. This means that as the fabric is being unrolled from the bolt, it is the edge running up and down. These are also know as ‘weft’ threads.
  2. Lengthwise: These threads are running the entire length of a fabric and are parallel to the selvage of it. A fabrics selvage is the bound edging lining the outermost lengthwise grain. It’s formed when the weft threads change directions
  3. Bias: This type of fabric grain takes a 45-degree angle to the length and cross grains of a fabric on its bolt. These are also know as ‘warp threads’. The bias provides a bit more stretch in woven fabrics.

Ask Netfah: Types of Fabric Grain was posted at J&O Fabrics Store Newsletter Blog. |

This post first appeared on J&O Fabrics Store Newsletter Blog - Craft Projects, please read the originial post: here

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Ask Netfah: Types of Fabric Grain


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