Textiles may be embroidered (e.g. canvas work, or crewel work), decorated by painting or printing with coloured pigments or inks (e.g. chintz), stamped or embossed (e.g. watered and pressed pile fabrics), or calendared (e.g. polished cottons).
The surfaces of both woven and non-woven cloths may be embellished with embroidery and applied cloths. Embroidery, executed with needle and thread, may partially or totally cover the ground cloth. An example of partial covering is crewel work, in which a woven ground, often of satin weave linen, is embroidered with designs worked in lines and solid areas of coloured wools. Canvas work is worked on a plain, open and even weave canvas. Generally speaking, canvas work, usually executed in wool with silk highlights, completely covers the canvas ground. Sometimes a second woven cloth is cut to shape and attached to the surface of the ground weave by stitching or gluing, as in two types of work known as hands and faces and stumpwork.
Another form of surface decoration or finishing is created by applying pressure and/or heat to the textile cloth surface by means of heavy smooth-finished metal or wooden rollers. If the rollers are etched with a design, the raised area of the design flattens the threads in those areas. As a result, the light is reflected differently off the pressed and unpressed areas. Textile cloth, with a pile or non-pile surface, may be embellished this way. The effect is not unlike a damask weave in appearance. If the rollers are not etched, a different finish is achieved. Calendaring is formed in this way. The process renders a smooth, sometimes polished, surface - particularly if gum water is added to the surface. If the fabric, particularly warp-faced wool, is folded in half and then pressed together the imprint of one textile surface against the other produces a wavy effect often known as moire, moreen or watered (Montgomery, 1984).
Finishes Natural or synthetic materials may be applied to textiles for practical or aesthetic reasons. For example, starch may be added to give body to either a thread or a fabric and bleaches are used to remove undesirable colour. Textile finishes include bleaching, weighting (with metal salts), stiffening (with starch or other adhesive), dressing/filling, flame retardants, water repellents, antistatic treatments, anti-bio-predation, anti-shrink. Other examples of materials used for finishing and details of the processes involved are given in Grier (1988), Montgomery (1984) and Timar-Balazsy and Eastop (1998).
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.