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Copyright 2006 Cornell University. All rights reserved.


Materials Specifications

Designers can buy small quantities of fabric for samples

Before you begin looking for fabric and trim, you need to thoroughly evaluate the functional and aesthetic characteristics of the materials you are looking for and the price point of your final product. These vary widely, and a material that is appropriate for one product may be very wrong for another. Books about the performance and quality characteristics of textile materials are listed in the reference section. But here is a basic approach to evaluating fabric choices and some principles to apply in choosing from the available options.

  • A fabric buyer for a fashion product would be primarily concerned with aesthetic details, while producers of high performance sportswear might require fabrics made to strict performance specifications.
  • A fabric vendor must provide fiber content information, but does not have to provide details on dyes, finishes, quality standards or performance evaluation.
  • Mills will provide this information on request.
  • Wholesalers or other retailers could refer a buyer back to the mill for specific information.
  • Sample yardage can be evaluated for suitability to end use before purchasing large quantities.

Specifications will be listed in swatch books




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