17 Most Popular Fabrics for Apparel Designers to Know

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Cotton is one of the most widely used fabrics in apparel, as it is affordable, comfortable, and durable. Cotton also has breathable properties and is highly absorbent; this makes it a great choice for hot days or activewear. It can be machine-washed and dried easily, making it easy to care for. The downside of cotton is that it wrinkles easily and can shrink when washed in hot water.




Linen is a natural fibre made from flax plants and is a lightweight fabric with a unique texture that adds visual interest to any design. It drapes beautifully which makes it perfect for tailored garments such as blazers or trousers but can also be used to make casual pieces like sundresses or skirts. It’s strong and long-lasting, but it requires more care than other fabrics due to its tendency to wrinkle and fade. Linen is often blended with other fabrics like cotton or silk for improved strength and wrinkle resistance.



Silk has long been prized for its luxurious feel and elegant drape. Silk garments are lightweight yet warm; they’re also very breathable, making them suitable for all seasons. However, silk garments require special care—they must be hand-washed in cool water with gentle detergents and they can be expensive due to their high cost of production.





Rayon is a synthetic fabric made from cellulose fibres derived from plants like bamboo or wood pulp. Its softness makes it comfortable to wear, while its light weight makes it perfect for summer clothing items such as dresses or blouses. Rayon drapes well but wrinkles easily; it should be dry-cleaned or hand-washed in cold water with mild detergent only if necessary.





Polyester is another popular choice among fashion designers because it is strong, lightweight and easy to care for. Unlike cotton, polyester does not absorb moisture, so it is best suited for clothing that won’t be worn in hot or humid conditions. Additionally, polyester is often blended with other fibres such as cotton for added strength and durability.





Muslin is an inexpensive natural cotton fabric that is lightweight, sheer and breathable. It is often used as a lining for clothing items such as coats or jackets and can also be used to make curtains due to its airy nature. Muslin does wrinkle easily though so it may not be the best choice for garments you want to look polished all the time.


Organza is a sheer fabric made from silk or synthetic fibres that has a soft drape and shimmery appearance. It is often used for evening wear such as gowns because it can add a touch of elegance to any outfit but also works well for daywear if you want something with a bit of visual interest.



Faux fur is a synthetic fabric made to imitate real animal fur and has become increasingly popular in recent years due to its animal-friendly nature. It’s great for adding texture and warmth to any garment, but it should be dry-cleaned only to keep its softness and lustre over time.



Tweed is a thick, woollen fabric with a textured surface that has been traditionally used to make outdoor garments such as coats and jackets. It’s great for keeping you warm in the colder months but still looks stylish enough to wear all year round! Tweed can be washed by hand or dry-cleaned, although it may shrink or lose its shape if not taken care of properly.

Leather is a durable and timeless fabric that has been used for centuries to make clothing items such as jackets, skirts, and pants. It is tough yet supple which makes it perfect for creating structured garments that will last you a lifetime. Keep in mind that leather is best kept away from water and should be regularly conditioned to maintain its suppleness.






Denim is a hardy cotton fabric that has been used for centuries and remains very popular today. It’s great for everyday wear due to its durability, but can also be dressed up with the right accessories to create a stylish look. Denim can be machine washed, although it may fade over time so keeping it away from direct sunlight is recommended.

Satin is a smooth, glossy fabric usually made of silk or synthetic fibres that drapes beautifully and feels luxurious against your skin. It can be used to make evening gowns, lingerie, blouses, and other clothing items that require a bit of shine. Satin should be dry-cleaned or hand-washed gently in cold water to prevent it from becoming damaged over time.

Corduroy is a thick fabric with a raised ribbed texture that is great for keeping warm during colder months. It’s also durable and comes in a variety of colours which makes it perfect for casual wear like jeans or jackets. Corduroy can be washed in the machine on a gentle cycle, but needs to be hung to dry as it may shrink if placed in the dryer.






Flannel is a soft, thick fabric made from cotton, wool or synthetic fibres that have been widely used for centuries. It’s great for colder weather due to its warmth and comfort but also works well for everyday wear if you want something with more texture and visual interest. Flannel should be washed in cold water and dried on a low setting to prevent it from shrinking or fading.

Velvet is a luxurious fabric that has a soft, plush feel and an elegant sheen to it that has been popular amongst fashion designers since the 14th century! It’s great for formal occasions such as weddings or proms because of its classic look but can also work well in casual settings if you want to add a touch of sophistication. Velvet should be dry-cleaned or hand-washed in cold water and hung up to dry, as it may become damaged if not taken care of properly.

Wool is one of the oldest fabrics still used today and has been around since ancient times. It is extremely durable yet soft to the touch making it ideal for sweaters and winter coats that need to keep you warm without sacrificing style. Wool can also be blended with other fibres such as cotton or polyester to create lighter-weight fabrics like flannel or suiting material.

Knit fabrics are lightweight and stretchy which makes them perfect for creating garments like sweaters and leggings. They come in a variety of textures and weights, so you can choose the one that best suits your needs. Knit fabrics should be washed with mild detergent on a gentle cycle and hung up to dry as they may shrink if placed in the dryer.

As a fashion designer, selecting the right fabric for your clothing designs can be daunting because there are so many options available! This article provided an overview of 17 popular fabric types used in apparel today—from cotton and linen to rayon and wool—so you can make informed decisions about which fabrics will work best for your next project! With the information provided here, you’ll have no problem finding the perfect fabric type for your designs!

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