Fabric Facts


Art Deco

Art Deco was a popular art design movement from 1925 until 1939, influencing the decorating arts including interior design and fashion. The style was bold geometric forms and colours and was considered elegant and glamorous as well as functional and modern.

Art Nouveau

Art Nouveau was a design style which broke with traditional design ideas of looking back historically for ideas and which peaked around the turn of the century. It is characterised by plant and flower motifs displayed as stylised, elongated vertical and curvy lines. One of the most iconic Art Nouveau fabric designs is the highly popular Liberty Ianthe design.

Arts and Crafts Movement

The Arts and Crafts Movement was a British, Canadian and American aesthetic movement in the last years of the 19th Century and early years of the 20th Century. Inspired by a romantic idealisation of craftsmen taking pride in their personal handiwork and as a revolt against machine made products, it was at its height between approximately 1880 and 1910. William Morris was one of the best known designers of this movement.

Brocade

A thick heavy fabric into which raised patterns have been woven.

Cath Kidston

Cath Kidston is well known for her brightly coloured vintage floral designs and her fabric is very popular.

Chenille

A heavy fabric woven with chenille cord - a soft tufted cord - and often used in rugs, throws and bedspreads.

Chinoiserie

A design style reflecting Chinese influence, elaborately decorated and intricately patterned.

Cottage

Cottage styles are popular for their vintage good looks and casual, romantic feel, using painted pieces, pale floral fabrics and pretty accessories.

Cotton Chintz

This is a cotton fabric which can either be plain or patterned. Its sheen finish allows it to be wiped clean. It was popular in the 1980s when the English Country look was fashionable, and Laura Ashley used it for many of their fabrics. Chintz has now become fashionable again.

Cotton Lawn

A very light weight cotton fabric, most suitable for dressmaking or quilting.

Cotton Linen/Union

Linen union fabric is linen yarn that has been blended with cotton or other fibres to make fabric more supple and more crease resistant than pure linen, which although strong can be very stiff and lacks the suppleness needed for soft draping curtains. Linen union fabric is also suitable for loose covers and cushions.

Cotton Sateen

A soft and luxurious fabric weave in which most of the threads are placed on the surface of the fabric, creating a satin-like finish.

Cotton/Linen Slub

This is cotton or linen which is drawn out or twisted yarn purposely set for a desired effect. It is a strong fabric and good for upholstery and craft projects needing strength and stiffness.

Damask

A linen, cotton or silk fabric with a reversible jacquard weave and a luxurious surface.

Designers Guild

Established in 1970 Designers Guild is one of the foremost international home designer companies for furnishing fabrics and other home accessories. Their products are sold in over 60 countries worldwide. Designers Guild was founded by Tricia Guild OBE and their fabrics have become highly fashionable and collectable.

English Country

Fabrics are mostly floral designs with pastel colours, chenille bedcovers and throws, plenty of drapes and cushions.

Hessian

A woven cloth made from linen but more often jute; sometimes called canvas and used for strong upholstery/craft purposes.

Jaquard

A raised design or pattern woven into a fabric as opposed to being printed on the fabric.

Laura Ashley

Laura Ashley has maintained its popularity through the years since the first shop opened in South Kensington in 1968. Laura Ashley's home furnishing fabrics are some of the most sought after. The current designs follow on from the original trend set by Laura Mountney who founded the firm. Vintage and current fabric is eminently collectable.

Liberty

Founded in 1875, Liberty is renowned for luxury and great design. Liberty stands for integrity, value, quality and above all beautifully designed products. Today Liberty continues its tradition for fashionable and eclectic design. All departments in the shop have collections of both contemporary and traditional designs, following fashions and adapting vintage classic designs. Liberty fabrics are among the most popular and collectable.

Liberty Kingly Cord

A Liberty fabric which is a very fine corduroy, 100% cotton and softly draping. Perfect for clothing, upholstery and other projects.

Liberty Tana Lawn

A Liberty fabric, a very fine lawn cotton.

Liberty Varuna Wool

A Liberty fabric - a very fine wool fabric, ideal for clothes or shawls and scarves.

Linen

Linen is made from the fibres of the flax plant, Linum usitatissimum. Linen is labour intensive to manufacture, but when it is made into garments, it is valued for its coolness and freshness in hot weather. It is more vulnerable to creasing, but suitable for upholstery.

Nina Campbell

Nina Campbell, the world-renowned interior designer, is known for her collections of fabrics among other luxury designer goods. Her luxurious designs and fabric mean that her collections are highly sought after.

Retro

Retro fashion is reminiscent of the past, usually 1960s and 1970s, possibly 1980s.

Sanderson

Founded by Arthur Sanderson in 1860, then becoming Sanderson and Sons in 1882, this interior design company is renowned for its quality, producing beautiful, classic and inspirational fabrics.

Shabby Chic

Shabby Chic is a form of interior design where furniture and furnishings are either chosen for their age and signs of wear and tear or new items are deliberately made to look like this.

Vintage

Fabric which belongs to another era, and usually rare and expensive because of its limited supply and demand.

William Morris

William Morris (1834–1896) was probably the most influential designer of the nineteenth century, producing what have become classic and timeless designs.  Under his direction Morris & Co. grew into a flourishing and fashionable decorating firm renowned for its wallpapers and textiles. Originating in the Arts and Crafts movement popular in the late Victorian era, the company’s designs are ever more appreciated and collectable.