• noun 1 a type of cloth or woven fabric.
• adjective relating to fabric or weaving.
— ORIGIN Latin textilis, from texere ‘weave’.
Textile crafts have a rich history. From weaving by early humans, the production of ancient cloths, the trade of fabrics along the silk road, the use of tapestries as status symbols, to the culturally significant Scottish tartans, the evocative past of textile crafts show how diverse the discipline is.
Craft Scotland represent more than 400 craft makers working with textiles. We asked our makers – from weavers to fabric designers – how they trained, what they love about the craft, and where they find their inspiration.
• verb (past wove; past part. woven or wove) 1 form (fabric) by interlacing long threads passing in one direction with others at a right angle to them. 2 usu. as noun weaving make fabric in this way. 3 make (basketwork or a wreath) by interlacing rods or flowers. 4 (weave into) make (interconnected elements) into (a story).
• noun a particular style or manner in which fabric is woven: cloth of a very fine weave.
— ORIGIN Old English: wefan
- from the Oxford English dictionary
The textile art of weaving involves interlacing two sets of threads or yarns: the warp (lengthways threads) and the weft (widthways threads). The warp threads are held tightly in place on a loom or in frames, allowing the weave to be threaded through and formed into the chosen design.
While the industrial revolution changed the textiles industry through the invention of mechanical weaving, the ancient craft of hand weaving continues to be practiced today.
The famous Scottish tartans used in Kilts are made of coloured threads, woven as both the warp and weft at right angles to each other. Find out more about tartan.
In Tapestry, the weft threads hide the warp completely. Portions of the cloth are used as pattern areas rather than taking the weave from one edge of the warp to the other, allowing for pictures and designs to form.
• noun cloth made by rolling and pressing wool or another suitable textile accompanied by the application of moisture or heat, which causes the fibres to mat together.
• verb make by interlocking loops of yarn with knitting needles or on a machine.