When I create a new fabric, my thinking includes: the use that will be made of this fabric, the material(s) that will compose it, the choice of its colours, its patterns, and its weave.
But what is a weave ? It is quite simply the way in which the warp and weft threads intertwine, the structure of the fabric. There are a multitude of weaves, more or less complex depending on the number of frames the loom has.
A weave is often technically represented by a grid : some of the squares are black and others left white: they symbolize the frames/threads that go up or down to allow the weft thread to pass through.
Here are three so-called « fundamental » weaves, which are the basis of weaving technique :
Plain weave, the oldest one, is obtained by alternately lifting the even and odd threads of the warp to allow the weft thread to pass through (one out of two threads is lifted). The resulting fabric will therefore have a rather smooth and uniform appearance (although this depends on the threads used – whether they are textured or not) and both front and back are identical.
Twill is characterized by oblique lines. The weft yarn passes under one and then over three other warp yarns, shifting by one yarn at each pass. This produces a very distinctive diagonal effect, which is typical of jeans / denim weaving.
Satin is woven with non-apparent weft, resulting in a very smooth fabric with a glossy frontside and a matt backside. In comparison to twill, satin offers the effect of a plain surface with no noticeable lines.