(The Language of Sewing & Fashion)
For Example: Click on the letter “P” below to link you to the “P” area of the sewopaedia to find out what ‘pleats’ means and then look for ‘pleats’ under the “P”s.
Sewopaedia is a free online dictionary of words, phrases, and abbreviations that are related to the fine art of sewing.
Sewopaedia attempts to provide “sewing” definitions in simple, easy to understand language.
An experienced editor gathers information from her personal experience and library, leading trade books, accredited arts institutions, professional online needle arts publications, related white papers and other professionals working in the field. A link may incorporate more extensive information than was included in the definition. It will link to our archives or another source where a greater depth of instruction may be warranted. Multiple sources will be used to generate a definition to obtain as accurate a definition or explanation of a terminology as is possible.
The definitions on Sewopedia may evolve and change being updated to reflect changing trends in the art. New sewing terms are added on a daily basis, as a result of our research or from the suggestion of a reader. Sewing abbreviations and terms can vary from author to author and from country to country. The terminology following is only an aid to sewers. Interpretation is the responsibility of the reader.
A-Line: A dress that flairs out at the bottom resembling the letter A.
Abutted dart: This is a particular type of dart that is used in fabrics such as interfacing to eliminate unnecessary bulk by bringing the stitching lines together after cutting out the centre of the dart. Baste or stitch to an underlay (a woven tape or very lightweight fabric).
Abutted seam: An abutted seam is used to eliminate bulk in an interfacing seam. The seam allowances are removed and the seam edges are abutted together and sewn with a zig zag stitch or an eighth of an inch seam to an underlay, for example, a woven tape.
Accessories: Some item that complements an outfit,like shoes or jewellery.
Acetate: Man made fibers made from cellulose acetate.
Acrylic:Man made fibers from acrylonitrile.
Applique: A decorative technique of cutting one piece of fabric and applying it to another.
Armscye: The opening for a sleeve.
Asymmetrical: Lack of balance or symmetry.
Atelier: The workshop – studio of a designer or dressmaker.
Au courant: Up to date fashion.
Avant-garde: Ahead of the trends of fasion.
Backing: This is fabric that is joined to the wrong side of an article for reinforcement.
Ballpoint needle: A needle used for machine or hand sewing which has a rounded point useful for sewing knits and elastic since it does not pierce the threads but slips between them.
Balmacaan: A loose, full overcoat with raglan sleeves, reminiscent of those made in Scotland of rough, wool cloth.
Band: A strip which is used to hold, decorate or complement an article, or piece of clothing.
Bar tack: A hand or machine reinforcement tack used at points of stress.
Bateau: A neckline which falls along the collarbone.
Beading: Decorative work done with beads.
Beading needle: A thin long needle used for beading and sequins.
Beeswax: Used to strengthen thread and reduce the tendency to tangle. thread is run through the beeswax before sewing.
Bell sleeve: A sleeve which flares at its lower edge like a bell.
Between needles:These are short fine needles used for quilting.
Bias: The diagonal direction across the grain of the fabric.(True bias is a 45 degree angle to the grain).
Binding: This is a trim or a strip of fabric – (woven, usually cut on the bias and knit, usually cut crosswise) which encases a hem or a raw edge.
Blouson: A garment, where material blouses over a fitted waistband.
Bobbin: The spool that holds the thread for sewing and sits in the bobbin holder under the needle and throatplate.
Bobbin case: The bobbin case holds the bobbin.
Bodice: The portion of a garment from the shoulder to the waist.
Bodkin: A blunt needle used to pull something through a narrow area.A sharp needle used to puncture a hole.
Bolero: A jacket not extending beyond the waist and worn open in the front.
Bolt: A large roll of cloth as it comes from the manufacturer.
Boning: originally whalebone or a flexible stiffening strip used as a corset stay.
Caftan: A loose, full tunic usually with full, long sleeves.
Camisole: A sleeveless undergarment worn under a sheer blouse or jacket.
Cap sleeve: A very short sleeve which just covers the shoulder.
Cape: A sleeveless outergarment which hangs from the shoulders.
Cardigan: An upper garment with centre front closing, usually collarless. A knitted sweater.
Cartridge pleat: A pleat which is rounded as opposed to lying flat.
Catch stitch dart: This is used to elimintate bulk when an interfacing dart and a fabric dart are aligned. Stitch the garment dart. Remove the center of the interfacing dart. Line up the garment and the interfacing and pull the fabric through the interfacing between the cut edges with all stitching lines matching. Catchstitch each edge to the garment dart at the stitching line.
Catch Stitched Seam: This method reduces the most bulk when stitching an interfacing seam. Interfacing seam allowances are removed and the interfacing edges are aligned with the seamline of the garment. The interfacing is catchstitched to the seamline.
Chenille needles:These are a heavy, sharp needles with a large eye used with yarn for embroidery or needlepoint.
Cheongsam: Cheongsam is a traditional chemise or shift style dress worn by Chinese women, usually having a high collar, mid-calf length or longer, and button or frog closures near the shoulder area.
Chesterfield: A classic plain single or double breasted coat with a notched velvet collar and sometimes concealed buttons.
Chevron: A V-shaped pattern consisting of stripes meeting at an angle.
Chevron Padding stitches: These are padding stitches made by rows of stitches in the opposite direction from the previous row.
Clip: A cut into the fabric at seams to allow the fabric to lie smooth.
Closure: Buttons, zippers, snaps etc. which hold a garment closed.
Coatdress: A dress which closes at the front and resembles a coat.
Colourfast: Fabric where the colour doesn’t fade or run with wash or wear.
Contrast(ing): Opposing colour or fabric.
Convertible: To reverse and resew the material of collar. A collar that can be worn open or buttoned.
Cotton: A natural fibre textile or thread made from the fibre of the cotton plant.
Couture: The sewing! The designing, marketing, and selling of custom sewn clothing for women.
Cowl: A draping woman’s neckline.
Cravat: A scarf or a necktie worn around the neck with the ends neatly tucked into the garment front.
Crewel needle: A medium weight, sharp needle used for embroidery using several strands of embroidery floss or thin yarn.
Crew neck: A round, stretchy 1 inch finished neckline snug around the neck shorter than a turtleneck.
Culotte: A skirt with legs like trousers.
Curved needles:These are used for sewing upholstery, rugs, lampshades by hand.
Darning: To repair a hole by weaving threads or yarn to fill in the hole.
Darts: Darts are an elemental structure in dressmaking to build three dimentional shape into a flat piece of fabric. Darts are formed by stitching triangular shapes on either side of a centre line, most often occurring at the bust, back, waist, and hip.
Denier: A measurement unit for fibre filaments. The higher the number – the coarser.
Dickey: a detachable collar or shirt front worn under a sweater or jacket.
Dirndl: A full gathered skirt. A dress with a fitted top and full gathered skirt.
Dobby weave: A small geometric shape woven into a fabric by a special mechanical part of a loom (dobby).
Dolman: A sleeve set into a wide armhole.
Double breasted: A fastening or closure of one side well over the other to allow two rows of buttons and one row of buttonholes usually.
Double knits: A jersey like fabric produced by two sets of needle and yarn
Dressmaking: The procedure and tehniques of designing and producing clothing usually for women.
Drum lining: Loose hanging lining.
Edgestitch: Stitching that is very close to the edge of a collar, pleat, pocket etc.
Empire: A dress with a waistline seam above the natural waistline and it can be up to the bust line.
Enclosed seams: Seams which are concealed by two layers of the garment.
Epaulet: Epaulets are shoulder trims consisting usually of a band held by a button.
Eyelet: A small hole in the fabric finished with thread, metal, cord.
Face: This is the right side of the fabric.
Facing: To finish a raw edge by sewing a fitted piece of fabric shaped to fit the edge or a binding to the edge. It is then turned to the inside and generally hand sewen out of view.
Fancy work: This refers to decorative hand work, i.e. embroidery, beading, silk ribbon embroidery, hand applique etc.
Favoring: This occurs when you slightly roll a part of a garment over another to mask a seam.
Finger press: To use your fingers to crease lightly.
Finish: Any method of finishing a raw edge.
Finishes: This would refer to the finish on a fabric, whether it be decorative as in colour or functional as in water resistant.
Flap: A thin piece of fabric attached on only one edge.
Flare: Expands outward in shape.
Fly: The fold of cloth that covers a fastening or opening, i.e. zipper, buttons at an opening.
Gathering: To draw up into small folds or puckers a greater length or amount of material into a smaller area.
Guage – dressmakers – A curved edge measures scallops and the straight edge hems, pleats button positioning, tucks etc.
Guage – hem – A guage for measuring and turning hems in one step ( useful for curved or straight
Guage – seam – A machine attachment useful for stitching curves.
Guage – sewing – is a 6 inch ruler with an adjustable slider for marking hems, pleats, button
Glovers: Glovers are hand needles with short, round eyes and triangular points for sewing leather in particular.
Godet: A triangular piece of cloth sewn into a garment for shape and decoration.
Gore: A tapering or triangular piece of cloth allowing shape.
Grain: The direction of fibres in fabric. Lengthwise grain runs parallel to the selvage with little give. Crosswise grain has more give and is perpendicular to the selvage.
Grommet: An eyelet reinforced with plastic or metal.
Grosgrain: Fabric or ribbon with heavy horizontal ribs.
Gusset: A small piece of fabric inserted at the underarm, either a one piece diamond shape or two piece triangular shapes. Gussets provide ease of movement and comfortable fit.
Hair canvas interfacing: A woven interfacing available in different weights; recommended in tailoring as it shapes easily.
Hand basting: Means to hand sew loosely with large running stitches so as to hold for a limited time.
Haute couture: High and elegant fashion and/or(establishments).
Hem: To turn back an edge of fabric; to finish by sewing securely.
Hem facing: A wide flexible strip used to form a hem turnback especially where there is a shortage of fabric or length.
Herringbone: A twilled fabric in which a zigzag pattern evolves from diagonal ridges which switch direction each row.
Hook and Eye: Fasteners for clothing which have a (usully) metal hook which inserts into an eye or a loop to close.
Hoop: A hoop is used to hold the fabric taught to do embroidery, freehand work, quilting with the feed dogs down.
In(s): Abbreviation for- inch(es)
Inset: A fabric or trim which is inserted in a fabric or garment for fashion or fit.
Interlining: An extra layer of fabric between the fabric and the lining or between the lining and the underling.
Inseam: this is the seam or measurement between the crotch and the hemline.
Jabot: A decoration of ruffles worn down the front of a dress, shirt or blouse. Fastens at the neck.
Jacket: A short coat.
Jacquard weave:An intricately woven fabric made using a jacquard attachment where the warp and weft yarns are individually controlled to form complex patterns.
Jerkin: A short, hiplength, sleeveless, pullover, collarless jacket or coat, worn with a belt.
Jersey knit: A plain knit fabric, smooth on the front and looped (perl) on the back.
Jewel neckline: A simple, round neckline.
Jumper: A low cut one-piece, sleeveless garment, suitable to wear a blouse or sweater under.
In Great Britain – a “sweater”, as we know it in Canada.
Jumpsuit: One piece garment – pants or shorts and bodice joined together.
Kickpleat: A pleat used for comfort and ease in a straight skirt.
Kilt: A skirt with pleats, usually tartan wool, worn by females or males.
Kimono: A loose wide sleeved robe worn by women (Japanese tied with an Obi). A style of sleeve.
Knitguage:A ruler designed to measure the crosswise stretchability of knit fabric.
Kickpleat: A pleat used for comfort and ease in a straight skirt.
Lace: A delicate, unique fabric of flowers or motifs on net. Decorative and has no grainline.
Laminated fabric: Two fabrics which are bonded of which one is foam or vinyl.
Lap: Any edge which extends over another edge. Fabric that has been folded over onto itself.
Lapels: The part of a jacket collar that extends and folds back onto the chest.
Lapped Dart: This is a special dart used to eliminate bulk from interfacing. Mark the stitching lines and cut down the centre of the dart. One would lap the stitching lines so that they meet. Stitch over the stitching lines with a zig zag stitch.
Lapped Seam: This seam is used to reduce bulk in interfacing seams by lapping the seamlines over each other aligned. Stitch with a wide zigzag seam or a straight line of stitching an eighth inch away from the seamline. Cut away extra seam allowances.
Layering seams: Grading seams by cutting seam allowances different widths to reduce bulk.
Layout: Instructional directions showing pattern piece arrangement of pattern pieces on specific widths of fabric for specific size ranges.
Leather: The tanned hide of an animal.
Lettuce hem: A decorative, frilly finish achieved by stretching a knit fabric while using a zig-zag stitch to sew the edge.
Line: The profile of a specific garment.
Linen: A natural fibre fabric made from the flax plant.
Lingerie: Women’s undergarments.
Loop turner: A long tool with a latch hook at one end to use to grasp fabric when turning a tube right side out.
Macrame: Cords knotted and woven into a coarse lace.
Mandarin: A standing, upright collar that sits close to the neck and is usually split at the front.
Mannequin: A dummy for fitting clothes. A life size human body model for modelling clothes in a store.
Marking: The transfer of symbols and instructions from pattern to fabric by various means. i.e. tracing wheel and paper, chalk, wax, tailor tacks, & thread tracing.
Martingale: A half belt at the back of a jacket or a coat.
Master Pattern: A pattern upon which changes have been made.
Maxi: A skirt or dress length between calf and just below ankle.
Mercerized: Mercerized cottons or linens have a finish treatment by sodium hydroxide that provides greater strength and lustre, as well as better affinity to dye.
Metallic thread: Shiny silver or gold thread for decorative sewing by machine or by hand.
Milliner: One who makes, designs or trims hats.
Milliners: Hand sewing needles which are long and useful for basting.
Millinery: That which is sold by a milliner-hats.
Mini: A very short skirt.
Miter: Sewing the seam diagonally at the corner.
Mock turtleneck: A stretchy, round 2 inch neckline finish that is shorter than a turtleneck and longer than a crew neck.
Moire: A wavy pattern on the fabric surface of acetates, silks or rayon.
Mothproof: Mothproof fabric has been treated to be resistant to the damage from moths.
Motif: A unit of design used for decoration.
Mounting: When two pieces of fabric are sewn as one.
Muslin shell: Alterations to the pattern are made and a test garment is made out of muslin.
Nap: A raised surface on textile or leather.
Needles: An implement used for hand or machine sewing.
Needle threaders: A tool used to assist in threading a needle.
Negligee: A delicate loose dressing gown.
Notch: A v-shaped cut, matching point transferred from pattern to fabric for ease of sewing.
Notions: In garment construction – those items needed other than fabric and pattern: buttons, needles, thread, zipper, etc. used to complete a garment.
Obi: A Japanese sash.
Olefin: A man made fiber produced after 1940.
Opening: A gap or space. As opposed to closed.
Organdy: A light, stiff, transparent silk or cotton fabric.
Outlet: This refers to the extra fabric which is added at the center back seam and at the front inseam top.
Overblouse: A blouse meant to be left outside of skirt or pants at the waist (not tucked in).
Overcast stitch: A hand stitch for finishing raw edges so they don’t ravel by sewing diagonal stitches over the edge of the fabric equal distances apart and deep.
Overhand stitches: Sewing with tiny, close stitches to join two finished edges together.
Overskirt: A secondary, decorative (usually shorter) skirt worn over another skirt.
Overtacking: A few hand stitches over one another to hold two area together.
Padding stitches: Padding stitches are used in tailoring to hold the interfacing to the fabric and to control shape using parallel or chevron padding stitches.
Pantsuit: A women’s suit of pants and jacket.
Parallel padding stitches: All of the rows of padding stitches are made in the same direction.
Patterned knits: A combination of stitches producing a specific pattern in a knit fabric.
Peplum: A short ruffle or flounce over the hips attached at the waist of a jacket or dress.
Peter pan collar: A flat, small, close fitting, round edged collar meeting at center front.
Piece together: To join the pieces together.
Pinafore: A sleeveless overgarment, (like an apron), worn by little girls, usually over another garment.
Pin-basting: To pin the seams together before stitching.
Pinking: To cut a raw edge with pinking shears to prevent ravelling.
Pinking shears: Scissors with notched blades which cut a zigzag pattern to prevent fraying.
Pin-tack: Several machine stitches in the same stitch to reinforce while not feeding the fabric.
Pivot: Stitching around a corner by leaving the needle in the fabric at the corner, raising the presser foot and turning the fabric to continue.
Placket: A finished slit in a dress, blouse or skirt.
Pleats: Pleats are actually folds in the fabric which creates fullness. Pleats can be created by folding the fabric onto itself or by stitching a separate underlay of fabric at the back.
Accordion: pleats are very narrow pleats of equalling widths which look like the bellows on an accordion and are always pressed along the entire length of the fold. Best done by a commercial pleater.
Box: pleats have two placement lines and two fold lines and the folds turn away from one another,whereas the back folds are facing. Sometimes they will meet and sometimes not.
Inverted: pleats have two foldlines and a shared placement line. The two folds turn toward each other and must meet, whereas the backfolds face away from each other.
Side or knife: pleats have one fold line and one placement line with the folds turned in the same direction. Sometimes there will be a cluster going in one direction and another cluster going in the other direction.
Separate underlay: pleat looks like an inverted pleat but has a separate piece of fabric (underlay) underneath the pleat. Where the backfolds are there are two seams.
Pocketing: The fabric used for pockets, stays and the inside of flys and waistbands.
Plunging neckline: A bare, low, usually, plunging neckline.
Pre-fold: Folding and pressing the fabric piece before joining it to the garment, i.e. binding, facing.
Pre-shape: To shape curves into the fabric with steam or pad stitches before sewing to the garment.
Pre-shrink: To shrink at the manufacturing level to reduce the garment shrinking further or to shrink fabric previous to cutting and sewing a garment.
Presser feet: Accessory feet which press against the fabric and have a throat plate beneath it. There are many having various purposes like…straight stitch, zipper foot, gathering foot, embroidery foot, button hole foot, etc.
Princess lines: A classic garment fitting shape into the curves with seams and not darts.
Print: The pattern or markings within or on a fabric.
Proportions: The relationship of various dimensions with respect to the whole.
Purl: The back of a knit stitch. The looped side of a stockinette stitch. A perl knit has the loops pulled to the front and the back of alternate rows.
Quilt: To pad and stitch decoratively through two layers of fabric with a padding layer between the two. Can be stitched by hand or machine.
Rayon: A synthetic yarn or fibre derived from a cellulose solution.
Raglan: Sleeves which extend from the collar to the wrist having diagonal seams in the front and back from collar to underarm.
Raw edge: the unfinished edge og a fabric or a garment.
Remnant: A remaining or leftover piece of fabric after selling the rest of a bolt or completing a garment.
Repertoire: A designer’s collection.
Reverse stitching: To stitch backwards or to change direction.
Ribbing: Stretchy knitted bands used to edge particularly waist, wrist, neck, and ankle.
Ribbon: A narrow, finished piece of fabric used to tie, to stabilize or as a trim. Can be velvet, rayon, silk etc.
Right side: The good side of a fabric. The side which would face out.
Rip: To remove stitches or to tear fabric along the grainline. A tear in a seam.
Roll: Where a collar turns.
Ruffles: A strip of fabric that is gathered or pleated to be used as decoration.
Sailmaker needles: Large needles with a round eye opening and a triangular point which goes part way up the shaft, used for canvas and heavy leather.
Sash: A band or a ribbon worn decoratively over the shoulder, around the neck or around the waist.
Scalloped: To cut and finish with circles at the border or the edge.
Scissors: Scissors should have sharp points and narrow blades which fit .very tightly together. There are many sizes, but a 3-5 inch pair of scissors are multipurpose. They are useful for cutting buttonholes, clipping, and general cutting.
Scooped neckline: A usually round, low-cut neckline in a ‘U’ shape.
Seam: The fundamental structural element which joins two pieces of fabric with stitches, sewn usually right sides together. The line where the stitches form.
Seam allowance: The fabric past the seam line which is not part of the garment. Seams are often stitched at 5/8 inch, but can vary. Quilt pieced seams were usually 1/4 inch.
Seam binding: Seam binding is a straight woven or lace tape used for finishing hems.
Seam Ripper: A tool of varying size and modification which have a curved, sharp cutting area for removing stitches and seams.
Seamstress: A woman who sews.
Secure: To backstitch or to knot the thread.
Selvage: The non-fraying, woven, lengthwise edge of fabric. Semi-fitted
Semi-fitted: To follow the body contours but not tightly.
Shank: Stem of thread or projected stalk of a button which is between the button and the cloth to allow for the extra overlapping thickness of fabric.
Sharps: Sharp needles of medium weight and round needle opening used for general all purpose sewing.
Shawl: A square, length or triangular piece of fabric worn on the shoulders, neck, and head.
Shawl collar: A lapel styled collar where the upper collar is cut from one single pattern piece.
Sheath: Chemise, sack, or tube dress.
Sheer: Thin transparent fabric.
Shift: Loose fitting chemise, sheath, slip.
Shirring: A decorative technique obtained by making multiple rows of gathering.
Shirtwaist: A (shirt dress)(shirtwaist) adopts details from a man’s shirt such as a collar, button front and often cuffed sleeves. The dress is often loose fitting, comfortable and cinched at the waist with a belt.
Shrink: To tighten fibers reducing the size by heat or moisture.
Silk: A natural fiber textile made from the fibers produced by silkworms.
Single Breasted: A jacket or a shirt which closes with a small overlap, fastening with a single row of buttons.
Slash: To make a cut in the fabric for ease of construction or decoration.
Sleeves: The part of clothing which covers the arm.
Slit: To cut lengthwise.
Slit skirt: Culottes (a skirt with legs like trousers).
Snaps: These are a socket and ball fastener from lightweight to heavyweight.
Snap tape: Ball and socket fasteners pre-spaced and attached to a twill or cotton tape.
Soutache: A narrow, braided, herringbone trim.
Spandex: An elastic, nonabsorbent synthetic fiber.
Sportswear: Clothes designed for casual comfort.
Stay: Fabric used to reinforce an area and to prevent stretching.
Stiletto: A small pointed instrument used for making eyelet holes in fabric or leather.
Stole: A fabric long scarf or fur worn over the shoulders for warmth or style.
Style: A particular fashion or image.
Synthetic fibers: Synthetic fibers are artificial fibers created from chemical solutions.
Tab: A small decorative flap or an extension of fabric used to aid in opening.
Tack: To join by loose stitches or loops or can be a marker.
Taffeta: A smooth fabric with a sheen used for women’s garment.
Tailor: One who makes, alters and repairs coats, suits, etc. One who makes to specific measurements and details.
Tailor board: A hardwood tool of different shapes and edges useful in pressing varied types of seams and corner.
Tailors Ham: A firmly, stuffed, rounded cushion useful for pressing curves and shaping.
Tailoring: The special sewing and pressing techniques used to mold a piece of cloth into a garment.
Taper: To decrease in width gradually by cutting or stitching.
Tapestry needle: A heavy needle with a blunt point used for needlepoint and tapestry.
Tension: The amount of pull or tautness on thread controlled by the tension assembly.
Thread count: A count of the number of threads per one square inch of fabric.
Thimble: A protective, metal, leather, or glass covering for the end of the finger to aid in pushing a needle through fabric when sewing or quilting.
Toile: A sheer linen or cotton cloth.
Toile de Jouy: A fabric with a scenic print originally of a French town Jouy-en-Josas.
Top stitching: To sew a decorative row(s) of stitching on the right side of the fabric from the outside at varying distances from the seam, and parallel to the seam.
Train: An extended part of the garment that follows at the back.
Transfer: The movement of a pattern or design from one place to another by tracing or by heat(iron).
Trim: To clip or remove fabric. Garment embellishment.
Turtleneck: A usually stretchy collar on a round neck about 4 inches but turned back upon itself
Twill tape: A strong woven tape with diagonal ribs used in tailoring and to strengthen seams.
Underlining: Underlining is meant to give shape, reinforce and support the garment fabric and the seams and is sewn into the seams.
Underlay: For example, a pleat looks like an inverted pleat but has a separate piece of fabric (underlay) underneath the pleat. Where the back folds are there are two seams.
Understitching: Stitch through the facing and the graded seam allowances from the right side close to the seamline to keep the facing from turning out to show on the right side of the garment.
Upholstery needles: Curved needles are used for sewing heavy or awkward items like rugs, upholstery, and lampshades.
Velour: A fabric resembling velvet with a raised surface.
Velvet: A napped (on one side), soft fabric of cotton, silk, rayon or nylon.
Velvet board: A pressing surface made with with wires. When the fabric is placed nap side down the pile will not crush or matt.
V-neck: A V-shaped neckline.
Vent: A lined opening or slit meant to aid in comfort.
Vest: A sleeveless buttoned garment buttoned or not to wear over a shirt or blouse. Part of a suit. In Britain – an undergarment.
Waistband: A band of fabric sewn and fitted to the waist on pants or a skirt.
Warp: The lengthwise yarns of a woven fabric.
Wash and wear fabric: Fabric, which takes little care or ironing after washing.
Waterproof fabric: A fabric impervious to water.
Water resistant fabric: Fabric, which resists water penetrating it. Water repellant.
Weft: The crosswise yarns in a woven fabric.
Welt: Fabric-covered cord sewn into a seam.
Wool: A natural fiber fabric or yarn made from the fleece (hair) of sheep, alpaca, or goats.
Wrap-a-round: A garment wrapped around a person and secured usually with a belt or buttons.
Wrinkle resistant: Difficult to wrinkle in that it recovers from normal use easily.
Wrong side: The inside of a garment.
Yardage requirement The amount of fabric needed to complete a project given in specific widths for specific size ranges.
Yarn count: A numbering system for spun yarns. The higher a count the finer a fabric.
Yardstick: A measuring device of wood or metal for measuring long, straight areas.
Yoke: The part of a garment that is fitted at the shoulders and neck area or at the hip where often a gathered fabric section hangs from it.