Saturday, July 1, 2017

Crêpe Effect Fabrics
Art Resource

Marie-Therese Wisniowski

Preamble
This is the sixty-sixth post in the "Art Resource" series, specifically aimed to construct an appropriate knowledge base in order to develop an artistic voice in ArtCloth.

Other posts in this series are:
Glossary of Terms
Units Used in Dyeing and Printing of Fabrics
Occupational, Health & Safety
A Brief History of Color
The Nature of Color
Psychology of Color
Color Schemes
The Naming of Colors
The Munsell Color Classification System
Methuen Color Index and Classification System
The CIE System
Pantone - A Modern Color Classification System
Optical Properties of Fiber Materials
General Properties of Fiber Polymers and Fibers - Part I
General Properties of Fiber Polymers and Fibers - Part II
General Properties of Fiber Polymers and Fibers - Part III
General Properties of Fiber Polymers and Fibers - Part IV
General Properties of Fiber Polymers and Fibers - Part V
Protein Fibers - Wool
Protein Fibers - Speciality Hair Fibers
Protein Fibers - Silk
Protein Fibers - Wool versus Silk
Timelines of Fabrics, Dyes and Other Stuff
Cellulosic Fibers (Natural) - Cotton
Cellulosic Fibers (Natural) - Linen
Other Natural Cellulosic Fibers
General Overview of Man-Made Fibers
Man-Made Cellulosic Fibers - Viscose
Man-Made Cellulosic Fibers - Esters
Man-Made Synthetic Fibers - Nylon
Man-Made Synthetic Fibers - Polyester
Man-Made Synthetic Fibers - Acrylic and Modacrylic
Man-Made Synthetic Fibers - Olefins
Man-Made Synthetic Fibers - Elastomers
Man-Made Synthetic Fibers - Mineral Fibers
Man Made Fibers - Other Textile Fibers
Fiber Blends
From Fiber to Yarn: Overview - Part I
From Fiber to Yarn: Overview - Part II
Melt-Spun Fibers
Characteristics of Filament Yarn
Yarn Classification
Direct Spun Yarns
Textured Filament Yarns
Fabric Construction - Felt
Fabric Construction - Nonwoven fabrics
A Fashion Data Base
Fabric Construction - Leather
Fabric Construction - Films
Glossary of Colors, Dyes, Inks, Pigments and Resins
Fabric Construction – Foams and Poromeric Material
Knitting
Hosiery
Glossary of Fabrics, Fibers, Finishes, Garments and Yarns
Weaving and the Loom
Similarities and Differences in Woven Fabrics
The Three Basic Weaves - Plain Weave (Part I)
The Three Basic Weaves - Plain Weave (Part II)
The Three Basic Weaves - Twill Weave
The Three Basic Weaves - Satin Weave
Figured Weaves - Leno Weave
Figured Weaves – Piqué Weave
Figured Fabrics
Glossary of Art, Artists, Art Motifs and Art Movements
Crêpe Fabrics
Crêpe Effect Fabrics
Pile Fabrics - General
Woven Pile Fabrics
Chenille Yarn and Tufted Pile Fabrics
Knit-Pile Fabrics

The Glossary of Terms, Timelines of Fabrics, Dyes and Other Stuff, A Fashion Data Base, Glossary of Colors, Dyes, Inks, Pigments and Resins, Glossary of Fabrics, Fibers, Finishes, Garments and Yarns and Glossary of Art, Artists, Art Motifs and Art Movements have been updated in order to better inform your art practice.

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Introduction
This is the second post on crêpe - see Crêpe Fabrics). The crinkle effect of true crêpe can be simulated by use of textured polyester yarns in the filling direction of the fabric, by weave and by finishes.

Dress in textured crêpe decorated with lace.


Crêpe Effect by Textured Yarns
Filament polyester yarns textured by the false twist process (see post - ) are woven as the filling yarn in a plain weave fabric with standard filament yarns in the warp. These textured filament yarns are low-twist. The warp yarns are low-twist polyester or triacetate filament fibers. The crêpe effect forms during the wet finishing of the cloth when the textured polyester shrinks. The finished fabric has a high level of crinkle, good hand, and exceptional performance for the consumer. One of the first textured yarn crêpes on the market was “whipped Cream” by the Klopman Co.

A vintage 1970s super cute bow tie dress in a light and floaty polyester whipped cream crêpe fabric by Klopman Mills. Fabric is purple with a printed pattern of polka-dots, circles and bubbles in white and navy blue.


Crêpe Effect by Weaving
Two kinds of weaves are used: the crêpe weave and the slack tension weave.

Crêpe Weave
Crêpe is a name given to a class of weaves that present no twilled or other distinct weave effect but give the cloth the appearance of being sprinkled with small spots and seeds. The effect is an imitation of true crêpe, which is developed from yarns of high twist. They are made on a loom with a dobby attachment. Some are variations of satin weave with the filling yarns forming the irregular floats. Some are even-sided and some have a decided warp effect.

Astute crêpe weave dress, black.

Crêpe weave is also called granite or momie weave. Fibers that do not lend themselves to true crepe techniques are often used in making crêpe weave fabrics.

Vintage 60s barkcloth MuuMuu maxi dress - momie weave green.

Wool and cotton fibers are also used frequently because the crêpe-effect fabric is easier to care for than true crepes. For comparison of characteristics see the table of the comparison of crepe fabrics in the previous art resource post. The irregular interlacing pattern of crepe weave is shown in the figure below.

Crêpe weave; irregular interlacings.

Sand crêpe is one of the most common crêpe weave fabrics. It has a repeat pattern of 16 warp and 16 filling and requires 16 harnesses. No float is greater than two yarns in length. It is woven of either spun or filament yarns. The silk-like acetate and sand crepe (Magic crêpe etc.) is widely used.

Sand crêpe Ria dress – 100% viscose.

Granite cloth is made with granite weave, based on the satin weave, and is an even-sided fabric with no long floats and no twilled effect. It is used in ginghams, draperies etc.

Moss crêpe is a combination of true crêpe yarns and crêpe weave. The fiber content is usually rayon and acetate. The yarns are ply yarns with one ply made of crepe twist rayon fiber. Regular yarns may be alternated with the ply yarns or they may be used in one direction while the ply yarns are used in the other direction. This fabric should be treated as a true crêpe fabric. Moss crêpe is used in dresses and blouses.

Moss crêpe blouse.

Slack Tension Weave
In slack tension weaving, two warp beams are used. The yarns on one beam are held together at regular tension and those on the other beam are held at slack tension. As the reed beats the filling yarn into place, the slack yarns crinkle or buckle to form the puckered stripe and the regular tensioned yarns form the flat stripe. (Loop pile fabrics are made by a similar weave – see future post). Seersucker is the fabric made by slack tension weave.

Seersucker showing the difference in length of the slack and regular tension yarns.

The yarns are wound onto the two warp beams in groups of 10 to 16. The crinkle stripe may have slightly larger yarns to enhance the crinkle stripe and this stripe may also have a 2 x 1 basket weave. The stripes are always in the warp direction. Seersucker is produced by a limited number of manufacturers. It is a low-profit high-cost item to produce because of the slow weaving process. Most seersuckers are made within 45 inch widths in plain colors, stripes, plaids and checks. Cotton, polyester, acetate and triacetate fibers are used singly or in blends. Seersucker is used in large amounts in the men’s wear trade for suitings and for women’s and children’s dresses and sportswear.

Seersucker tank swimsuit.


Crêpe Effect by Finish
This effect is usually achieved by plisséíng or embossing a plain woven fabric. The pucker is permanent or durable.

Plissé is converted from either lawn or print cloth grey goods by printing sodium hydroxide (caustic soda) on the cloth in the form of stripes or designs. The chemical causes the fabric to shrink in the treated areas. As the treated stripe shrinks, it causes the untreated stripe to pucker. Shrinkage causes a slight difference in thread count between the two stripes. The untreated or plain stripe increases thread count as it shrinks. The upper portion of the cloth in figure below shows how the cloth looks before finishing and the lower portion shows the crinkle produced by the caustic soda treatment. This piece of goods was found on a remnant counter and was defective because the roller failed to print the chemical in the unpuckered area.

Plissé crêpe.

Tadashi Shoji one-shoulder plissé gown.

Embossed crêpe is made by pressing a crinkled design onto the surface of the cloth. Cotton cloth must be given a resin finish also to make the design durable. Thermoplastic fibers can be heat-set to make the design permanent.

Adrianna Papell women's lace embossed crêpe sheath.


Reference:
[1] N. Hollen and J. Saddler, Textiles, 3rd Edition, MacMillan Company, London (1968).

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