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Traditionally Japanese, this fabric's name translates to "feather two layer". A plain woven silk, it is known for its lustrous face and used historically to make kimonos. It can vary in mommes (weight) allowing it to have different opacities as well. It also goes by the name of China silk.


  • kimonos
  • evening wear
  • dresses
  • skirts
  • linings
  • lingerie


  • smooth
  • lustrous
  • fluid drape
  • lightweight


  • dry clean only

Hairline Stripes

A series of stripes that are as thin as a hair and aligned close together. The stripes create a light texture throughout the fabric, and due to how thin the stripes are, the fabric could look solid from afar.

Half Ball Buttons

Just as the name suggests, these buttons feature a domed face and shank back. The backs can be hollowed out with the shank coming out from the center. They can come in fabric cover kits for customization as well.


A finishing process where the fabric is put through a series of hammers to give a dappled effect. This finish is most commonly seen on satins and velvets, and it enhances the sheen while giving the piece texture and dimension.


  • velvet
  • satin


How a fabric feels to the touch: smooth, soft, crisp, dry, textural, etc.

Hand Needles

Hand needles have a rich history that dates as far back as 61,000 years ago. They were originally made from bone or the needles from plants, such as agave, and were used to connect hides together. Today, needles are typically made from carbon steel or nickel. They have a sharp point that allows yarns to be separated instead of cut, and a hole on the opposing end to hold the thread. There are many types of hand needles that all excel in different tasks, such as embroidery needles, beading needles, and quilting needles.


Rabbit or hare fur is used for hats, trims, and coats. The fur is soft, dense, and can be short or long. The use of hare fur became popular during the 1920's and took over the fur industry making up almost half of it. It is easy to dye which made it even more sought after.


  • hats
  • trims
  • coats


  • soft
  • dense
  • easy to dye

Harris Tweed

When it comes to Harris Tweed, tradition and quality are important. So important that it is protected by law. As defined in the Harris Tweed Act of 1993, Harris Tweed must be hand-woven and finished by the Islanders of the Outer Hebrides of Scotland in their homes, and woven with virgin wool from the location. The creation of the woven has been passed down from generation to generation, and was used as protection from the cold. The twill tweed can vary in color, pattern and weight.


  • fashion applications
  • home applications
  • accessories


  • warm
  • breathable
  • soft
  • strong
  • high quality


  • expensive
  • dry clean

Heat Sensitivity

The temperature at which a fiber will melt, soften, or shrink when subjected to heat in relation to cleaning, drying and ironing. Protein fibers are sensitive to heat. Wool becomes harsh, brittle and scorches easily when dry. White silk and wool turn yellow when subject to too much heat. Steam can be used on wool when ironing, but should not be used on silk as water will product spots. (See Heat Tolerance and Thermoplasticity)

Heat Tolerance

The ability to withstand heat when subjected to cleaning, drying and ironing. Cellulose Fibers are tolerant to heat where as protein fibers are sensitive to heat. (See Heat Sensitivity and Thermoplasticity)

Heat Transfer Printing

The use of heat and pressure to apply a print on fabric. The print may be made of vinyl and applied directly, or digitally printed on transfer paper and then transferred onto the fabric. The process is said to have derived from decalcomania, which has since been shortened to decal.


  • photo prints can be transferred in full color
  • can be put anywhere on a garment
  • allows graphics to be altered easily


  • large quality runs are timely and expensive
  • fades quickly
  • does not last
  • prints are stiff
  • can not be ironed


A mix of colors, most commonly shades of gray or gray with another color, are interwoven to create a speckled design and muted tone.


Hemp is a fiber made from cannabis with a similar feel to linen when woven. The first use of the fiber for fabric dates back to 8,000 B.C. In China, around 150 B.C., they used the plant to create the first paper. Since then, the fiber has been transformed into 25,000 different uses that include rope, plastics, and paints. Incredibly strong, especially when wet, the fiber was used to make canvas for sails.The word canvas is derived from the word cannabis. Incredibly versatile, hemp is both environmentally friendly and economically easy to produce.


  • fabric
  • canvas
  • rope
  • plastic
  • paints


  • mildew and mold resistant
  • hydrophilic
  • stronger when wet
  • non-static
  • good thermal conductivity
  • no piling
  • bleach resistant


  • •ot flexible
  • low elasticity
  • poor dimensional stability
  • poor drape
  • loft
  • poor resiliency
  • low luster
  • susceptible to silverfish
  • poor inflammability

Herringbone Twill

Sometimes referred to as a "broken twill weave", herringbone is a zig-zag pattern that alternates its color in each direction. The zig is a different color than the zag, creating a pattern that resembles the bone of a herring where its name derives from. The pattern dates back to the Roman Empire and was used to pave roads with stones. The pattern used in textiles dates back to Ancient Italy and has been perfected since. Today, the pattern is created in twills and tweeds, and has a rich history in menswear fashion.

Hickory Cloth

Often used by Civil War reenactors, hickory cloth is a soft and durable striped cotton twill denim weighing about 5 ounces per yard. Between the 1920's and the 1950's, it was used to make overalls for carpenters and railroad workers.


  • work clothes
  • overalls
  • jeans
  • casual wear


  • durable
  • soft


An animal skin treated for clothing and accessory uses. Hides can refer to leather from lamb and cattle, snakeskin, and alligator skin.


Homespun fabric quite literally means a fabric which was spun at home. In the midst of America's boycott on imported goods during the 1760's, homespun fabrics took on a new life. More and more women learned how to create fabric at home as an effort to show patriotism. The weave was irregular creating a tweed-like appearance.


  • coats
  • suits
  • separates and sportswear


  • coarse
  • rugged

Honeycomb Piqué

A honeycomb pique presents a pattern that is similar to a bee's honeycomb. The pattern is subtle and creates a bit of texture throughout the fabric.

Hook & Eye

This closure dates back to 14th century England. It wasn't until 1697 that the closure was referred to as a hook and eye. Primarily used for corsetry, in 1889 the hook was greatly improved when a small hump was added to keep it secure in the loop until pushed out by the wearer. Today, the closure is widely seen in bras and above a zipper in skirts, dresses, and trousers.


  • bras
  • lingerie
  • skirts
  • dresses
  • pants


Once used for sacks that held hops, it is now used for fabric. A type of open weave that is plain and similar to a basketweave or a tweed. It is used for spring/summer informal and sports jackets.


  • informal blazers
  • sports jackets


  • lightweight
  • breathable
  • wrinkle resistant
  • easy to drape
  • casual


  • no insulation
  • susceptible to snags
  • delicate

Horn Buttons

Dating back to Ancient Rome, horn buttons were originally used for mere decoration. Once they started being used to hold together fabric, they gained popularity because of their durability.


  • durable


A flexible netting used in hems to add weight and body to a garment. Horsehair petticoats of the 1850's were referred to as crinoline. The French word for horsehair is "crin" which is where it got its name.


  • dresses
  • skirts
  • hat brims
  • costumes
  • collars
  • lapels


  • stiff
  • adds volume and weight


Originating in Scotland, it is a checkered pattern that has abstract points resembling the tooth of a canine. The pattern is most commonly seen in black and white, and was used on scarves and skirts throughout the 1800's. The 1930's saw a serge of this pattern as it was widely associated with wealth. Dior, Chanel, Louis Vuitton, and Armani among others have built collections around the pattern reinforcing the pattern's posh reputation.

Huacaya Alpaca

Similar to sheep fiber, it is soft and more dense than Suri alpacas. It has a crimped appearance and is easier to spin into yarn making it more popular.


  • sweaters
  • jackets
  • scarves
  • hats
  • mittens


  • soft
  • silky
  • insulating
  • lustrous
  • durable
  • hypoallergenic
  • water-repellent
  • •thermal insulator
  • drapable


  • hand wash and dry clean only
  • pills


Made of flax and linen, huckaback is a type of weave pattern that creates an uneven surface allowing it to be incredibly absorbent and fast-drying. They are most commonly seen as dish towels and hand towels.


  • hand towels
  • dish towels


Aborbs moisture easily. Fibers that are hydrophilic include Cellulose Fibers and Protein Based Fibers.


Aborbs very little moisture. Fibers that are hydrophobic include synthetic fiber.