Silk is considered the royal fabric of all because of the luxurious look it gives to literally everything made out of it. The delicate process that combines nature and some technology to bring this fabric into being is what gives it all the extravagance. Silk fabric has many variations, and it isn’t only specific to making clothes out of it.
You can create indulgently sleek and flowy gowns for your parties out of it that gives you extra adoration with its gentle sheen. But that’s not all; we specifically love it to make grandeur bed sets, flowy curtains, scarves, wall hangings to give your house some hints of royalty. If you are working with silk for your next projects, here’s a detailed article on types of silk fabric-which one to use for your project.
There are many variations of silk fabric determined by the type of insect that produces the raw fabric. Sometimes it is also determined by the combination threads used to make the silk fabric. It has many uses, from dresses to beddings, to cushion covers, to curtains and much more, you can make anything out of it. Let us discuss in detail the silk fabric types.
Table of Contents
Different Types of Silk
Mulberry silk is by far the purest and the most popular silk one can ever get their hands on. This type of silk is produced by a silkworm that feeds on the leaves of mulberry. The strands they produce to make their cocoons are pure white, unbroken, and extremely soft. The fabric produced with these strands is the softest and shiniest and is the queen of fabrics. This process can be carried out in mulberry farms and naturally, and China is the largest mulberry silk-producing country in the world.
The next silk type is called tussah silk, also known as tasser or tusher silk. This kind of silk is produced by tussah worms that feed on the leaves of the oak. The oak leaves consist of tannin, which is consumed by the worms; therefore, the silk strands have hues of tan and brown colors. This type of silk fabric is slightly textured, and the fabric made out of Tussah silk strands is durable, lustrous, and slightly grainy.
The next type is the Eri silk which is by far the most favored silk type as it is known as peace silk because the process does not include the killing of the silkworm. This type of silk fabric is made by the worms that feed on the castor leaves. This final fabric is densely textured, wooly, and durable. The eri silk strands blend so well with wool and cotton and are heavier and elastic than the other types. Other than that, it has thermal properties, making it warmer in winters and cooler in summers. The eri silkworms are greatly found in China and Japan, and they are transported to Thailand for further processes.
Muga silk is produced by wild worms that feed on the leaves, aromatic som, and sualu. It was formerly reserved for royalty, but now it is available for everyone. It is originally produced in some parts of India, and this silk is dyeable. The best thing about this type of silk is that its shine increases with every wash. It has a glossy texture, and the fabric is extremely durable. Muga silk is used to make sarees, chadars, and much more.
As the name suggests, spider silk is produced by the protein that is spun by spiders. The spider silk fibers are highly elastic, durable, and long-lasting. The silk can be made into a fabric that is used to make a variety of stuff. Spider silk has high tensile strength and is utterly soft. During the process, the protein from the spider web is isolated and spun into strands which are then used to make fabric. Spider silk is a luxury to own, and it can be used in shawls, gowns, jackets, and much more.
Best Silk Fabrics – Which One To Use?
100% Pure Silk Charmeuse Fabric
Give a luxurious touch to your closet with flowy gowns made out of this beautiful pure silk Charmeuse fabric. It is a hundred percent mulberry silk that has a beautiful texture and a graceful luster to it. This fabric is pretty affordable and is 45 inches wide. You can purchase this fabric in six different colors or dye it in your desired color.
The thing we love about this silk is that it is extremely lightweight, soft, and breathable. You can use it to make a variety of stuff, for instance, you can make silk gowns, bed sets, curtains and much more. Pillow covers out of this charmeuse silk fabric are highly recommended to prevent acne and hair loss in people prone to all these issues.
Other than that, this pure charmeuse silk is best to make wedding gowns as it drapes beautifully and gives you an extravagant look. Moreover, it can be used to make evening gowns, scarves, ribbons, and much more. The best thing about this fabric is that it is very manageable. You can easily sew it into gowns and dresses without any inconvenience.
Puresilks White 100% Silk Chiffon Fabric
Chiffon silk fabric is popular for making evening wear and overlays. When used as overlays, it adds an exquisite elegance to your dresses because the flowy, soft silk draping down looks otherworldly. This fabric can be used to make a variety of stuff. From prom dresses to wedding dresses, scarves, and dress overlays, you can stitch all from it.
This fabric is very manageable when sewing it because it doesn’t slip that much due to its crinkly texture. It is a wholesale fabric, and you can purchase it for 23.50 yards. Other than that, this pure chiffon silk is extremely lightweight and breathable, making it best for evening gowns. It might be a bit harder for some sewists to work with this fabric.
For beginners, it is recommended to pin the fabric with paper for cutting purposes. It is made from cultivated silk which gives it a light and thin texture. Adding to that, silk chiffon is semi-transparent, which makes it best for making wedding gowns. Some people also love it for making flowy curtains for their roomy hallways, which add refinement to the setup.
100% Silk Fabric Crepe de Chine
If your next project is making airy summer blouses, wedding dresses for evening functions, skirts, and scarves; then Crepe de Chine should be your go-to fabric. It has similar properties to crepe silk and is much more lightweight than any other. Crepe de Chine is produced from silk, and it has a highly twisted yard which gives this fabric a beautiful texture.
If you take this fabric in hand, you will feel a grainy texture. It gives a smooth and soft touch to the skin, due to which many people prefer it for their gowns and blouses. Other than that, it has a flowy nature, due to which it makes a beautiful drapery. Moreover, it is a lightweight, dense, comfortable, and extremely breathable fabric.
One of the best properties it possesses, for which we absolutely love it, is that it is wrinkle resistant which makes it extremely manageable. Other than that, it has a faded luster which makes it look exquisite. Crepe de chine does not lose its color under the sun, and over the years, therefore, it is a forever youthful fabric for which we highly recommend it.
Burgundy Italian Shantung Silk Fabric
Shantung silk, what some people like to call gold silk, used to be the mark of royalty. It is used to make some high-end wedding dresses due to its incredible look and drapery. Shantung silk originates from Chinese culture but has gotten a lot of popularity in western Europe and other parts of the world. It is made following some intricate processes, which give it a unique look and texture.
If you look at the texture, you will notice irregular ridges on the surface due to which is called slub silk. The ridges form due to the process with which it is made. It has an incredible glow, which makes it preferred by many people for its wedding gowns, party wear, ball gowns, and much more. It is also used to make ties, men’s shirts, blouses, and much more.
Other than that, it is highly manageable because of its less slippery nature. You can purchase Shantung Silk in bulk for your projects and make beautiful dresses out of it. Moreover, it is the thinnest and lightweight fabric available in the market. You can also merge with other types of fabrics that look extremely exquisite. All in all, Shantung is an extremely nice fabric to work with.
Black Silk Taffeta
Taffeta Silk is very popular all across the globe for its durability, beautiful glow, and forever youthfulness. It has a subtle crisp to it, due to which it is highly manageable and gives off a low luster which adds tremendous grace to it. It is extremely smooth and soft to touch, making it best for loose, flowy evening gowns. Taffeta Silk is made up of pure silk or cuprammonium rayons.
It is made out of intricately twisted silk threads which makes it a high-end fabric. Taffeta should be your go-to fabric if you mean to make ball gowns, wedding dresses, or curtains. It is also used to make corsets because its thin nature makes it incredibly breathable and comfortable. It is also a bit stiffer than any other type of silk, making it best for evening dresses.
Adding to that, Taffeta silk has rich historical roots. It was used to be worn by people from royalty in the olden days. You can purchase this fabric type in different colors and in bulk to carry out your projects. Some of the things you can easily make out of it are wall coverings, curtains, ball gowns, evening gowns, wedding dresses, and much more.
Eggshell Silk Habotai
Habotai silk, also known as China silk, will stun your mind with its sheen, elegance, softness, and affordability. This type of silk is highly manageable; therefore, it is best for beginners. You can use it for all kinds of projects as it offers great versatility. Habotai silk is extremely lightweight, which makes it best for summer dresses and scarves.
Habotai silk fabric has a smooth texture-free surface that is extremely gentle on the skin. Due to its smoothness, it is used in various art projects, such as hand painting or block printing. Due to its lightweight and thinness, Habotai silk can make linings, flags, banners, scarves, pillow covers, and much more.
Habotai silk is dyeable; therefore, you can have your desired color dyed upon this fabric. Habotai silk is produced by feeding mulberry leaves to silkworm moths. The larvae produce fiber filament, which is one continuous strand. This silk fabric is the cheapest of all; henceforth, it can be used by all beginners for their learning projects.
Off White China Silk Organza
If your project requires layering of silk flares for a poofy gown, then organza silk is your best shot. Silk organza has a little bit of a stiffer drape which makes the best poofy frocks and gowns. It was originally made from silk, but it can also be made from synthetic fibers such as nylon and polyester. The synthetic silk organza is stiffer than the true silk organza.
Organza silk originated in parts of Turkestan; with time, its production spread in various parts of the world. It can be used to make a variety of things, for instance, blouses, dresses, tulle frocks, curtains, evening dresses, and much more. This fabric type is less stretchy and has medium moisture-wicking capabilities.
Organza silk has a plain weave and a very low density, so this fabric is so transparent. Moreover, it is made with a simple twist spinning method, due to which it is named organza or organzine. Last but not least, China silk organza is extremely thin and breathable, which makes it highly prone to damage; we absolutely love it for its use in interior decor.
Silk Georgette Chiffon Fabric
Next up, we have silk georgette chiffon, which is a type of crepe fabric. This is why it has a grainy or bumpy texture. Silk georgette can be made up of pure silk or synthetic fibers. This fabric is lightweight and has little to no sheen as compared to other silk types. The making process includes weaving together tightly twisted yarn which causes the crinkly texture of the fabric.
Silk georgette is used to make a variety of stuff, for instance, maxis, flowy summer gowns, curtains, and much more. It can be dyed into any color and can also be printed with beautiful floral patterns. There are also different types of silk georgettes known as satin georgette or jacquard weave, which is determined by its weave type.
Silk georgette boasts many amazing properties, which makes it popular among people. Silk georgette is a bit difficult to handle when sewing it together due to its slippery nature. Besides that, due to its high density, it has a very nice drape, making it best for flowy gowns. Last but not least, it is extremely lightweight, a bit elastic, and breathable.
Silk Dupioni Fabric
Dupioni is a plain-woven silk fabric with an incredible sheen to make pretty frocks, curtains, bedsheets, pillowcases, and cushion covers. It is made with some fine and uneven silk threads, due to which it gets its slightly grainy texture. The yards are tightly woven together, and the shine of this silk fabric is very glowy.
Due to its irregular weave, this silk fabric has the most slub, and it resembles a little bit with the shantung silk in the texture. Other than that, Dupioni silk is thicker and heavier than all the other types, and it is best to make wedding gowns out of it. Another great quality of this fabric is its iridescent effects. This effect is achieved by weaving different colored silk threads together.
This fabric can be used to make elegant wedding gowns and upholstery, giving a hint of royalty to whatever you make out of it. Not only that but the threads can also be woven into floral designs, which makes the fabric incredible for floral evening dresses. Last but not least, this silk fabric type is extremely breathable and lightweight.
Which Silk Fabric Is Best For Your Project?
Deciding which silk fabric type is best for your project greatly depends on what you are making. It also depends on your silk level, as some of the silk fabrics are extremely hard to handle when sewing them. If you are into making curtains, you need a bit heavier fabric for it; for instance, silk organza, silk taffeta, and jacquard silk is best for that purpose.
However, if you want to make pillowcases, you need to find the softest silk fabric. Mulberry silk is one of the purest and finest forms of silk. It is extremely soft to touch; therefore, it is best for pillowcases. Silk chiffon should be your best shot if you want to make flowy evening dresses or wedding gowns. Silk chiffon has the best drape, which is used to make the finest flowy evening maxis and gowns. Other than that, organza silk is used to make poofy wedding gowns.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Can you make bedding out of silk?
Yes, you can definitely make bedding out of silk because it is not only soft and gentle to the skin, but it also gives your bedrooms a beautiful look. Using silk bedding, especially pillows, prevent certain skin conditions and hair fall. It is because it produces less to no friction with your skin and hair like other fabrics do. Therefore, silk pillows are best for people with hair fall issues and skin conditions.
Can silk fabric cause an allergic reaction?
Although silk is very gentle to the skin, it is often recommended to people with skin conditions such as acne, eczema, or hair fall. However, some people might experience allergic reactions when they come into contact with any variation of silk. The thread used to make silk might cause rashes, hives, or hay fever in some people; therefore, you should get yourself tested for silk allergies before purchasing it.
What is silk fabric made of?
Pure silk is produced by merging fibers produced by an insect which they use to make their cocoons. The silk fiber is produced by many insects such as honey bees, ants, beetles; the most common insect is the silkworm. The silk fiber is then strengthened and dyed to make a full fabric out of it.
Where can I buy Silk fabric?
Silk fabric is easily available in the markets where you can purchase different kinds of fabrics. Other than that, there are also online stores where you can purchase your desired fabric in your desired color. The fabric can be purchased in bulk from amazon as well.
How to tell if fabric is silk?
Pure silk is not easy to identify, so you are unsure if the fabric is silk, you can run your hands on it. Real silk is super smooth to touch and creates a weird crunching sound when you mush it in your hands. Also, pure silk warms up with friction, so you should rub it between your fingers to see if the fabric warms up or not.
Silk is the finest of fabric with a perfect luster and drape to it. It is best to make beautiful dresses, upholstery, bed sets, and much more. Silk fabric is produced by weaving together yarns of silk threads made by silkworms. The process is intricate, and the final result is mind-blowing. Silk fabric gives off a beautiful luster that comes naturally from the thread with which it is made. We hope you find the best product for your next project.