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Furniture Terminology

Fabric Glossary

Basket weave

Features two or more threads interlaced to form a checkered, basket-like pattern.


Tufted, extremely soft yarn consisting of wool, cotton, silk or synthetic fibers like rayon. Some of its main uses include furniture trim, bedding and clothing.


Soft, fluffy white fiber obtained from cotton plants. Some of these plants produce long-staple cotton, such as Egyptian and Pima, which is softer and higher quality.


A firm, lustrous fabric made of silk, linen, cotton or rayon fibers. With flat, reversible patterns in a jacquard weave. Used for home furnishings, upholsteries and more.


Twill-woven fabric usually made of hard-twisted yarns for durability. Popular for jeans, upholstery and bedspreads.

Jacquard weave

A method of weaving that produces an unlimited variety of intricate patterns.


Decorative openwork fabric created by looping, interlacing, braid¬ing or twisting threads. The open pattern is formed by hand or on machines, which is the most common today.


Material created by the tanning of animal hides and skins. Available in a variety of types, such as full grain and suede.


One of the oldest fabrics, its fibers are obtained from the inside of the stalk of flax plants. Durable, smooth, quick drying and often blended with synthetic fibers to enhance its wrinkle resistance.


Long, lustrous hair obtained from the Angora goat and mixed with other fibers.


A large group of plain-woven cotton fabrics. Fine, smooth and soft, sometimes featuring a pattern or print.

Plain weave

The simplest and most common form of weaving. Made by passing yarns over and under each other in alternating rows.


A synthetic fabric with a wide variety of characteristics, including strength and elasticity.


A stitching technique in which two or more layers of fabric are sewn together to form a pattern. Most commonly used in bedding and wall hangings.


A soft, synthetic fabric manufactured from cellulose.


A natural fabric produced from the cocoons of silkworms, known for its luxurious sheen.


Soft, delicate leather made from the underside of a cow's hide. Used primarily on accents such as pillows, ottomans and select chairs.


A heavy, decorative woven fabric in cotton, wool or synthetic fibers. Traditionally used for wall hangings, but also popular for table covers and upholstery.

Tie dyeing

A method of dyeing fabric by hand. Garments are twisted and tied so the fabric folds resist the penetration of the dye. When they're untied, colorful and unique patterns are revealed.


A basic textile weave producing a diagonal ribbed pattern.


A fabric made of silk, cotton or synthetic fibers, characterized by a soft, downy surface and smooth underside. Mainly used in upholstery and clothing.


Created from a combination of natural and synthetic fibers. Characterized by softness and breathability. Used for a variety of textile products, such as clothing.

Waffle cloth

A fabric with a honeycomb-like weave and textured surface, allowing for extra absorbency. Used for towels, draperies and more.


Rows of stitches covered by strips of matching or contrasting fabric, adding a decorative edge and durability. Popular for seams on furniture and clothing.


A fabric obtained from the fleece of sheep, goats and other animals.


A generic term for a twisted strand of natural or synthetic fibers used to create textile fabrics.

Yarn dyed

A process of dyeing in which the color is added to the yarn before weaving. Considered more colorfast than regular printed fabrics.

Leather Glossary


Colorless agent used to dye the hide, so its natural grain and markings will be visible.


Authentic leather derived from the animal hide that retains its original characteristics.


Leather covered with a layer of polyurethane (or synthetic material) that provides easy maintenance, consistent color and durability.


Sanded and finished leather with an artificial grain pattern on the surface.

Full aniline or Pure aniline

Dyed leather without the addition of colors or topical applications, resulting in a natural, extremely soft finish. Over time, moisture and oils are absorbed that create a rich surface.

Full grain

Aniline-dyed premium leather without a sanded surface, revealing its natural grain.


Material created by the tanning of animal hides and skins. Available in a variety of types, such as full grain and suede.

Leather match

A combination of top-grain leather with matching vinyl.


Top-grain leather that has been lightly brushed on the grain side, creating a soft, suede-like surface.


A sheen produced by wear or polish.

Pull up

Full-grain aniline leather that, when stretched, temporarily reveals a burst of lighter color.


Also known as suede, this second hide layer has been pulled apart from the surface layer, embossed with a grain pattern and finished with color. Less flexible and typically used to make the backs or sides of furniture.


Soft, delicate leather made from the underside of the skin. Used primarily on accents such as pillows, ottomans and select chairs.

Top coat

Polyurethane (or synthetic material) used as a clear protective coating for water resistance and durability. May be gloss or matte depending on the type of leather.

Top grain

In the hide-splitting process, the top layer is referred to as top grain. The most durable and flexible part of the hide, it's the second-highest quality of leather after full grain.