Understanding Twill Fabric: Properties, Characteristics, and Use


Twill is a textile weave that features diagonal parallel ribs. It is one of three basic types of textile weaves, the others being plain weave and satin. The weft thread is passed over one or more warp threads, then under two or more warp threads, and so on, with a “step,” or offset, between rows to form the distinctive diagonal pattern. Twill generally drapes well due of its structure. Twill fabric is commonly used for a variety of applications, including clothing, upholstery, and linens. It is a popular choice for trousers and jackets due to its lightweight and wrinkle-resistant properties. In addition, twill fabric has a smooth surface that is easy to dye and print on, making it a popular choice for fashion and decorative purposes.

What is the Composition of Twill Fabric?

Before we go any farther, let’s start with the fundamentals: what exactly is twill? Twill, rather than being a distinct type of material, is a method of weaving fabric. This means that any form of textile can be a twill fabric if it is weaved in a specific way. As a result, there are numerous twill fabric types. A twill weave has its own distinct appearance: a diagonal line in the fabric. This distinguishes twill from other types of weaves, such as satin and plain weaves, which feature straight lines going down their material.

This diagonal line is made by weaving a warp thread over a weft thread (which is put out horizontally on the loom) (laid out vertically). This is why twill weave examples are frequently described using fractions: the fraction denotes a fabric’s specific woven structure. A 4/2 twill, for example, means that a weft thread is woven over four warp threads, followed by two beneath. Because a weave can be made of different fibers, the qualities of a twill cloth might vary depending on the fabric used to manufacture it. Cotton, polyester, a cotton-polyester combination, and wool are the most popular fabrics used to make twill.

Twill Structure

Each weft or filler yarn floats across the warp yarns in a series of interlacing to the right or left, generating a pattern of unique diagonal lines in a twill weave. A wale is another name for this diagonal pattern. A float is a section of yarn that crosses two or more perpendicular threads.

A twill weave, depending on its intricacy, takes three or more harnesses and is the second most basic weave that may be constructed on a reasonably simple loom.

Twill weave is sometimes labelled as a fraction, such as 21, in which the numerator represents the number of raised harnesses (and thus threads crossed: in this case, two) and the denominator indicates the number of dropped harnesses when a filling yarn is added. The fraction 21 is read as “two up, one down” (the plain weave fraction is 11). Totalling the values in the fraction yields the least number of harnesses required to form a twill; in the example given, the number of harnesses is three. Twill weave is distinguished by its diagonal lines.

Characteristics of Twill Fabric

Twill fabrics, as opposed to plain weave fabrics, have two sides that are not the same. The front of the twill is known as the “technical face,” and the back is known as the “technical back.” The technical face side of a twill weave fabric has the most noticeable wale; it is usually more durable and appealing, is most commonly used as the fashion side of the fabric, and is visible throughout weaving. If there are warp floats on the technical face (the warp crosses over two or more wefts), there will be filling floats on the technical back (the weft crosses over two or more warps). If the twill wale rises to the right on one side, it rises to the left on the other. Twill fabrics are woven with no “up” and “down” directions.

Twill weave is rarely used in sheer fabrics. Printed twills (where a design is printed on the cloth) are far less prevalent than printed plain weaves since a twill surface already has interesting texture and design. Printed twills are often done on lightweight textiles.

Because stains and soiling are less visible on the irregular surface of twills than on a smooth surface, such as plain weaves, twills are frequently used for strong work apparel and durable upholstery. Denim is a twill fabric, for example.

Because twills have less interlacing than other weaves, the yarns may move more freely, making them softer and more malleable, and they drape better than plain-weave textiles. Twills also recover better from creases than plain-weave textiles. The yarns can be packed closer together to make high-count fabrics when there are fewer interlacing. Higher count fabrics, such as high-count twills, are more durable and resistant to air and water.

Foulard or surah, herringbone, houndstooth, serge, sharkskin, and twill flannel are all examples of even-sided twills. Cavalry twill, chino, covert, denim, drill, fancy twill, gabardine, and lining twill are all warp-faced twills.

What Is Twill Used For?

Twill is a strong and versatile fabric that is used for clothes, accessories, and home furnishings. Here are some popular twill cloth things.

Denim, Jeans are undoubtedly the most ubiquitous and popular application of the twill weave. Denim is often made of cotton or a cotton mix.

Chinos, Cotton twill cloth is used to produce chinos and khaki pants. The weight of the cloth distinguishes chinos from jeans. Jeans are made of heavier fibers, whereas chinos are made of lighter fibers.

Tweed, houndstooth, and herringbone fabrics are available. Tweed and houndstooth are twill weave patterns made from numerous distinct colored yarns. Herringbone can also be made by weaving various colored yarns in a twill weave or by using the same color yarns to create a directed design.

Work attire, The twill weave produces an extremely durable fabric that is perfect for outdoor and industrial work clothing like overalls and jumpsuits that are subjected to a lot of wear.

Upholstery, Many upholstery fabrics and home design items, such as couches, chairs, cushions, and curtains, are manufactured with the twill weave and must withstand years of repeated use.

Linens for the bed and bath, Because the twill weave allows for large thread counts, it is used for sheets, beds, and towels. increased thread count Cotton materials are often softer and more durable, making them ideal for everyday use.

Some Common Question

What are the characteristics of twill fabric?

  • Distinct diagonal pattern
  • Durability
  • Softness
  • Drapability
  • Lightweight
  • Wrinkle-resistant
  • Easy to dye and print on

How many types of twill fabric are there?

  • Broken twill: This type of twill fabric is characterized by a diagonal pattern that alternates direction, creating a broken or zigzag appearance.
  • Herringbone: A type of twill fabric with a distinctive V-shaped pattern, often used in suiting and outerwear.
  • Drill: A sturdy, durable twill fabric that is often used for workwear, such as pants and overalls, as well as for home textiles, like curtains and linens.

What season is twill fabric suitable for?

  • All seasons

What is the texture of twill fabric?

  • Smooth and soft

What type of fabric is twill?

  • Can be made of cotton, wool, silk, or synthetic fibers.

Is twill better than cotton?

  • Depends on the specific use case and personal preference

Is twill a soft fabric?

  • Yes, twill fabric is known for its softness.

Is twill a warm fabric?

  • Can provide warmth, but also depends on the specific type of twill and fiber used

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