Textile Structure and Embellishments




A textile is a woven, felted or knitted cloth, or a fiber, filament, or yarn used in making cloth. There are numerous ways – for example, weaving, looping, or pounding – to create cloth from animal, plant, and synthetic fibers. The study of how cloth is produced and embellished is necessary for understanding and appreciating the craftsmanship and creativity of textile producers.

Textiles made to be furnishings or worn for dress are expected to wear out and be discarded. Yet textiles thousands of years old have survived, found in burial sites, bogs and garbage heaps. The design vocabulary varies from region to region, as do the specific decisions for use of color, motifs, and how an empty field is filled with pattern. Museum textile collections are essential to the preservation of this cultural information, and are invaluable sources of inspiration for designers and artists.