You Made That Outta What?! A Semi-Comprehensive Guide to Fabric – Part 1 Dupioni Silk

I work in the fabric industry and am an upholsterer by trade. Yet I still need a refresher, even a crash course on fabric nomenclature (That’s your big word for the week meaning the science of naming things. You know, what Adam’s job was in the Garden?). You’ll notice that we use proper names for each of our fabrics. But you might not know a chintz from a chenille, or the slight difference between a jacquard and a brocade. And that’s okay! We’re here to educate you. By knowing the specific features of a given fabric, you can make an informed decision or at least narrow your options for your next DIY or custom sewing project. (Don’t forget, we do that!)

Read on…Today’s fabric feature focus is Dupioni Silk

Let’s kick off this series I’ve entitled “You Made that Outta What?!”, with the July special.

Dupioni Silk

Dupioni is a plain weave, crisp silk. Plain weave basically means the kind of weaving we all understand, under/over under/over and so on. It’s a tight weave and very satiny. It’s a little heavier and usually has irregularities in the cross threads. Dupioni is often woven with multiple colors which gives it an iridescent look like taffeta.
In India, Dupioni is a favorite for bridal and formal wear. It is a lighter weight upholstery and can be used for projects that will not be used frequently. In other words, don’t use it for your everyday couch that Fido and family live in. But when used for drapes or curtains it must be lined to protect it from UV damage (Scarlett used that to her advantage turning those sunbleached velvet drapes at Tara into a swanky frock to get her a new man!).

Including the July special, Ebony Brown Silk, one of my favorite Dupionis here at BFS is Willow’Wisp I love the whimsical flowers in red against the sand silk. Thiswould make a beautiful duvet, accent pillow or a small occasional chair.



Next time, we’ll look at the cousin to Dupioni, Silk Shantung.

Sew ‘n piece my friend!