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Types of Fabric for Clothing

Learn how to use the right fabric clothing. There are so many fabrics, but you’ll always pair the right fabric with the right sewing project!

I love to sew for myself, but it’s really magical teaching someone else how to sew. When they learn a new skill or sew a sleeve for the first time, I see the confidence and excitement in their eyes. It makes it all worth it!

I feel like I’ve learned a lot about fabrics in the last couple of years. I have been sewing for a long time, and I’ve made lots of mistakes.

I’ve made clothing that didn’t fit right. I’ve used fabric that was too light for an item or too heavy for an item. Here’s a big list of types of fabric for clothing!

I still make mistakes or don’t think items all the way through, but the important thing is that I’ve learned from my mistakes. Along the way I’ve learned which fabrics I like to sew with.

types of fabric for clothing

I feel like I’ve gotten pretty picky with my fabrics, and maybe they cost more, but I’m not buying as much and each item lasts much longer.

Do you want to learn more about fabric? Here are some great articles:

Types of Fabric for Clothing

This list is not all inclusive, but it covers a lot of the more common fabric you’ll find at a fabric store. The weight of the fabric will make a big different for what type of clothing it will work for.

Think of a lightweight corduroy shirt vs a heavy corduroy skirt. They are both corduroy but the fabric wouldn’t work for the other!

Woven Fabrics

Blouses and Shirts

  • batiste
  • chambray
  • challis
  • gingham
  • broadcloth
  • georgette
  • corduroy
  • muslin
  • organdy
  • oxford
  • dotted swiss
  • lawn
folded pile of handmade clothing

Children’s clothing

  • gingham
  • corduroy
  • flannel
  • dotted swiss
  • flannelette
  • lawn
  • velveteen

Dresses

  • challis
  • crepe
  • gingham
  • ikat
  • lawn
  • sateen
lightweight fabric for clothing

Formalwear

  • brocade
  • chiffon
  • dupioni
  • faille
  • georgette
  • lace
  • jacquard
  • organdy
  • organza
  • taffeta
  • tulle
  • velvet
silk fabric

Jackets and Coats

  • corduroy
  • denim
  • felt (real wool felt, not craft felt)
  • houndstooth
  • seersucker
  • tweed
  • velvet

Lingerie and Underwear

  • batiste
  • lace
lace fabric

Lining

  • batiste
  • bemberg rayon
  • muslin
  • taffeta
  • tricot
  • lining fabric

Pants and Skirts

Heavier weight

  • corduroy
  • denim
  • gabardine
  • seersucker
  • tweed
  • velveteen

Lighter weight

  • batiste
  • chambray
  • challis
  • gingham
  • broadcloth
  • georgette
  • oxford
  • dotted swiss
  • lawn

Raincoats

  • gabardine
  • vinyl
  • goretex

Sleepwear and Loungewear

  • challis
  • chambray
  • chenille
  • flannel
  • flannelette

Heavy Work clothes

  • denim
  • canvas
tips for sewing jeans

Knit Fabrics

T-shirts and Tees

  • jersey
  • interlock
  • picue
jersey knit fabric

Children’s clothing

  • interlock
  • jersey

Dresses

  • jersey
  • double knit
  • scuba knit
  • liverpool fabric
  • french terry
  • stretch lace

Lingerie and Underwear

  • Interlock
  • jersey
  • tricot
  • stretch lace
sweater knit for clothing

Jackets

  • sweatshirt fleece
  • polar fleece
  • french terry
  • velour
knit fabric for clothing

Sportswear or Knitwear

  • double knit
  • scuba knit
  • liverpool fabric
  • sweatshirt fleece
  • polar fleece
  • french terry
  • pique
  • jersey
  • velour

Sleepwear and Loungewear

  • jersey
  • interlock
  • tricot
  • trench terry
  • sweatshirt fleece
  • velour

Here’s a graphic to learn about the types of fabric for clothing!

types of fabric for clothing

If you make something using this pattern, I’d love to see! Please share it on social media with the hashtag #heatherhandmade and tag me!

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how do i do to download this?

Heather you are a smart, thank for being my personal sewing hero!

That is really neat! Thanks for sharing. =)

What is a PDF?

Amazing blog, I love these infographics and the whole Sewing 101 series is brilliant.

Is there a way to get a .pdf of this chart?
Thanks,
Linda

You could save it and then use an online converter to turn it into a pdf.

Hello What a wonderful chart. It might be possible for you to convert it to a pdf chart on your blog. It woud be appreciated and great. Thank you

This is great! Now I can figure out what to do with all my extra fabrics.

Jane