Fabric Finishes

All newly constructed fabric as it is produced by the mill is referred to as greige goods or gray goods. This does not imply that the fabric is grey in colour. It simply denotes an unfinished fabric. This unfinished fabric must pass through various finishing processes to make suitable for its intended end use. Finishing may change the appearance of fabric, its handle (feel), its serviceability, its durability, etc. Therefore, understanding the various finishing processes enables the garment manufacturer to identify potential fusing problems at an early stage to act accordingly in order to eliminate the possibility of poor fusing performance.

Finishing Process Description
Mercerising Stabilises cotton fabrics and reduces the possibility of shrink age under fusing conditions
Ammoniating Stabilises cotton fabrics, provides lustre and improves affinity for dyes
Shrinking Stabilises fabrics completely(a.k.a pre-shrinking)
Crabbing Prevents creasing and uneven shrinkage on wool fabrics
Decatising Pre shrinks fabrics, adds lustrous effect with very smooth surface appearance
Cireing A process applied to silk, rayon and nylon fabrics using a wax-like substance to produce a supergloss finish
Raising Produces a hairy or fuzzy surface
Napping A Process used to obtain a deep hairy surface and add softness
Wrinkle resistance Also reffered to as wash and wear finish. This finish ensures that the garment required little or no ironing after washing
Water repellency Fabric processed to resist absorption and penetration of water
Soil repellency Applied to outer fabrics to overcome water and oil borne stains e.g. foodstuff
Slip resistance Fabrics that have a low thread count are finished to combat seam slippage
Antistatic finishes Nylon : polyester and acrylic fabrics are used this way to eliminate crakle, sparks and attraction of foreign particles
Dyeing A Process to impart colour to the finished fabric

There are numerous finishing techniques applied to outer fabrics but the above methods are essentially those which can caude difficulties in achieving successful fusing results. It is known fact that simple fabrics can differ to bulk shipments and even form one colour way to another there are sometimes dramatic differences in the behaviour of the fabric. It is therefore vital that not only the initial sampling be tested with suitable interlinings, but that all colours of a fabric type from the bulk shipment be re-tested as well.

Certain of the finishing techniques indicated above are known to be inconsistent and the resultant finish on a shipment of fabric may not necessarily be the same as previous shipment of the same fabric.