Various textile cloths are used in upholstery structures. The different weaves, weights, fibres and dressings are relevant to the durability and stability of the structure. Choice may be governed by function, local availability or economics.
Bast fibre cloths including linen, jute and hemp are used to sandwich and contain loose fillings. Linen and hemp have been used since ancient times. Jute, commonly known as burlap in the USA and as hessian in the UK, was first introduced into Britain from India in 1830-32 (Bally, 1956). In 1833 successful attempts to spin and harvest that year increased the demand for jute cloth. The Crimean War (1854) gave a further boost to the industry because Russia cut flax export. In 1857 steam power driven looms and spinning machinery were introduced into Calcutta, expanding the availability of the textile worldwide and rapidly replacing coarse linen cloths. Jute was treated with an emulsion of whale oil and water but the Scottish whaling fleet collapsed during the 1914-1918 war. By 1957 the
Scottish industry could no longer compete. Jute is cheaper and superior to linen for its purpose since it does not stretch as much and therefore does not sag as quickly. Hemp is more durable than jute and coarser and stronger than linen.
Cotton cloths are used as covers under the top cover (muslin/calico layers). Since the nineteenth century, deep dyed cottons were commonly used under the seat rail, a practice referred to as bottoming. Over time, the use of dressed cotton largely replaced leather and dressed or closely woven linen cases for feather and down. Cotton may be expected from the late nineteenth century and polyester cotton from the mid-twentieth century as cheaper and more easily maintained alternatives to leather. The process of dressing (using starch paste and other materials) was used to add body, to give a decorative finish, to give a water-resistant finish, or to cover small imperfections in the weave thus reducing the ingress of dust and light and the escape of feathers.
Threads, twines and cords of various weights are used to make up the stitched edges of the upholstery structures (Figure 3.2). Spring twine, as the name implies, is used to stitch springs to the webbing foundation. Laid cord, used to tie down springs, is resistant to stretch to maintain compression of the springs. Stitching twine is used to anchor the loose fill to the webbing foundation. A finer waxed thread is sometimes used for stitching corners.
Was this article helpful?
THIS book is one of the series of Handbooks on industrial subjects being published by the Popular Mechanics Company. Like Popular Mechanics Magazine, and like the other books in this series, it is written so you can understand it. The purpose of Popular Mechanics Handbooks is to supply a growing demand for high-class, up-to-date and accurate text-books, suitable for home study as well as for class use, on all mechanical subjects. The textand illustrations, in each instance, have been prepared expressly for this series by well known experts, and revised by the editor of Popular Mechanics.