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Thursday, April 15, 2010

Watered Silk or Moire

Moire (pronounced Mwar or Mwaray) is a silk with a wavy or "watered" appearance. Also called watered silk. Historically silk but now done with cotton and rayon too. The watered appearance is usually created by the finishing technique called calendering. Moire effects are also achieved by certain weaves,such as varying the tension in the warp and weft of the weave, or by running the fabric through engraved copper rollers. Calendering produces the true moire, known as "moire antique" and "moire Anglaise," which is a purely physical phenomenon. In calendaring, the fabric is folded lengthwise in half with the face side inward, and with the two selvedges running together side by side. To produce moire ribbed rollers are used, and the ribs produce the watermark effect. The rollers polish the surface and make the fabric smoother and more lustrous. High temperatures and pressure are used as well and the fabric is often damped before being run through the rollers. The end result is a peculiar luster resulting from the divergent reflection of the light rays on the material. Changeable moire is a term for fabric with a warp of one color and a weft of another, which gives different effects in different lights. Moire fabric is more delicate than fabric of the same type that has not gone through the calendering process. Also, contact with water removes the watermark and causes staining. Moire feels thin, glossy and papery due to the calendering process. (Source: Wikipedia)

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