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Sewing for Beginners: Types of Fabric

Choose the best fabric for your next sewing project with this list of fabric types.

Sewing for Beginners Types of Fabric

If you are just learning how to sew, it is time for you to learn about the different types of fabric you can use for your projects. This is especially important when you plan on creating more intense projects like wearables or free sewing patterns that use fancy fabrics that can be harder to work with.

The first step to learning how to sew with different types of fabrics is to learn what they are! This is why AllFreeSewing has compiled a glossary of all the types of fabric you might be sewing with!

Refer back to list or even print it out to use during your sewing endeavors. Sewing for Beginners: Types of Fabric has all the information you need!

PLUS! Check out this video below from Angel Peterson for even more information about fabric and working with it for sewing projects.
 

Types of Fabric


Blends: Fabric made up of several kinds of fibers. Used for a variety of projects.

Cotton: The most widely-used fabric when it comes to sewing. Excellent for most projects. Comes in a variety of weights and thickness.

Cotton VoileLightweight and somewhat sheer fabric, perfect for draping.

Cotton Lawn: Comparable to cotton voile, but crisper.

Corduroy: Very thick and ribbed fabric, often used for clothing.

Denim: Heavy-weighted fabric that does not stretch or drape well.

Fur and Faux Fur: Either animal fur or a synthetic fabric created to resemble animal fur, very bulky, can be difficult to work with.

Knit: Comes in a wide variety of weights, stretchy and great for garments.

Lace: Decorative fabric that is see-through. Often harder to work with and can be very delicate. Great for accents.

Netting: Like lace, this fabric is transparent and used for accents.

Polyester: Man-made fabric that is very popular. Low water absorbency. Often used for clothes. Not as popular as it once was.

Silk: Very delicate and light-weight fabric. Very slippery and oftentimes difficult to work with. often used for lining.

Satin: Varies in weight (light to heavy). Similar to silk in appearance and difficulty to work with.

Spandex: Extremely stretchy fabric used to create tight, form-fitting pieces that make moving easier.
 

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Thanks for compiling his list together. As a beginner with very little experience, you might get excited about a fabric you saw and want to use it but then discover that it's not that easy. Next I'll be on the lookout for how to sew using the different types of fabrics.

Great list. Even a brief overview is helpful in sewing.

Having an overview of fabric types can come in handy for a beginning sewer. Using inappropriate fabric for any sewing project can set up a sea of frustration not just for a beginner but for the more seasoned sewer as well. The back of any pattern has suggested fabric types to use and I have found adhering to the pattern suggestion worth following.

Thank you for this excellent tutorial! I have seen thousands of instructions on the internet detailing how to sew this or to make that but this is the first time I have seen anything that offers any information with what material might be best suited to what kind of project. Such a simple concept but so valuable to someone who is new to sewing. Thanks again!

This is a good list of fabrics for the beginner seamstress. When learning to sew, choosing the correct fabric is very important for the end results of the project and how it fits. This is not a comprehensive list of fabric choices but a good beginning for the new sewist.

This list is a nice starting point, but I am looking for something a little more comprehensive. Is there another source where I could get a more complete list and may something with the best ways to use each fabric? I would appreciate any guidance in what to study - books, websites, tutorials, classes.

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