Taffeta is a fabric made from a combination of silk and rayon. It is thought to have originated in Persia. The fabric is smooth, crisp and shiny. It comes in many different textures, colors and thicknesses. Taffeta comes in two prominent types that include piece-dyed and yarn-dyed fabric. There are several different variations of yarn-dyed taffeta.
Piece-dyed taffeta is one of the two main types of this fabric. It is soft and can be machine washed. Piece-dyed taffeta is used for linings of clothing.
The other prominent type of taffeta is yarn-dyed fabric. This type of taffeta is more dense and firm than piece-dyed taffeta. It is used for formal gowns, wedding dresses, jackets and other structured clothing items. Yarn-dyed taffeta varies in heaviness and appearance.
Like its name implies, the paper taffeta weave is similar to the texture of paper. It is a very simple weave and has a crisp appearance. It is a yarn-dyed fabric, though it does not weigh much. It is often used for evening gowns and coats because of its lightweight texture.
Tissue taffeta is very similar to paper taffeta. It is also a yarn-dyed fabric and is very thin. It is made with a plain weave. The fabric is smooth and lightweight. It is usually semi-transparent. It is often used on wedding gowns to create a fuller skirt.
Taffeta that has an iridescent shine to it is called shot taffeta. It is a yarn-dyed fabric and is designed by weaving two different colors together. One color is woven into the warp, and a second color is interlaced through the first. This creates an appearance of two different colors.
Faille taffeta is a yarn-dyed fabric. This type of taffeta is generally thick and stiff. It has a subtle ridged texture. Faille taffeta is usually used on skirts and dresses.
References and ResourcesBritannica Encyclopedia: Taffeta
World of Thai Silk: What is Taffeta Silk?
Apparel Search: Glossary T