How Texture Dramatically Improved the World of Fashion!

Color911 Texture Fashion Amy Wax

The feel of a fabric, the texture along with the color, greatly influence every fabric’s appeal. Texture can come from different weaves, the weight of the fabric, weaving techniques, or articles that were sewn into the cloth. Fashion and comfort may not always be compatible, but the feel of clothes will definitely effect how attractive they are, and how often you will wear them!


Texture can go from bulky and dull to sheer and silky.

The weave of a fabric can make is soft and fuzzy, rough or loopy or even delicate and sheer. The colors can either enhance the texture or minimize it. Nowadays texture and color go hand in hand and you have more fabric choices than ever.


What started it all.

Lets take a look back and see how we got here. Before the industrial revolution, hand or home-woven cloth, and ‘homespun’ wool, usually had many imperfections, making it rough. With the industrialization of cloth production, smooth-woven cotton fabrics became the norm. Complex, textured fabrics, like damasks, became much easier to produce.


New materials mean new options.

With the advent of synthetic fibers, the ‘silkiness’ of nylon and rayon provided a greater range of textural options. The technology and automation haven’t stopped advancing. Welcome spandex, acrylic, and polyester, fleece, and many others. Synthetic fibers can be heat treated to fix them into specific shapes – from pleats to crinkles and even flocking. The properties of these fabrics can be altered to change the way that dyes take to them, creating interesting visual textures.


The digital revolution has taken this a step further. New technologies in weaving, production, dying and design have made highly textured fabrics extremely common. Subcultures in fashion tend to put a greater emphasis on texture – whether it’s crumpled linens or cyberpunk constructions. The texture of fabrics contributes to the overall fashion footprint of different cultural identities.



Color and fashion work together for the best appearance!

 Generally colors work with their textures. Together, they will give an impression or create a look or style. Bulky and dull fabrics will soak up all the light and not accentuate the profile or figure it is on. Fabrics that are shimmery and smooth will accentuate every change of surface the will reflect the light.


Lighter or brighter colors will also accentuate the texture of a fabric. The shadows are more visible and choosing a lighter color will bring your attention to the surface quality. Darker colors will generally absorb the light and the bulkier weave or imperfections of the fabric will be less visible.


Color and texture in both fashion and home décor

Amazingly the same rules apply to draping the body or decorating a room. Choosing textiles that have more surface interest grab people’s attention. The fabric can accentuate the elegance or reflected light in a space, just as it would make someone look thinner and more delicate. A bulkier fabric that is darker with less surface variation will accentuate the profile and overall massing or shape.


Fashion also experiments with the interplay between our expectations of texture. Never in history have designers had so many different textures available to them. While we cannot tell where it will take us, the future of fashion will continue to be influenced by the technologies of production.


“Texture Sells”

 In researching this blog post, I spoke to people that work with textiles of all sorts. What I heard repeatedly is that texture sells. Anything with texture whether it is a fashion item or fabric for the design world, is more appealing with a visible texture to it. Trends come and go, but fabrics with textures are more popular than ever. Choosing a fabric with texture can make whatever you are wearing more visually interesting! Colors can show up more, and textures appear as visible as the colors themselves. My suggestion is to add texture to your life in every way, I hope you’re inspired!





About the Author: Amy Wax

Amy Wax, creator of Color 911®, is an artist and experienced color consultant, recognized for her expertise in the world of color and design. Fifteen years ago, Amy created Your Color Source Studios, Inc. a company specializing in the architectural application of color. Amy has received numerous awards for her color expertise.

Learn More About Amy

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