Complete Textile Glossery (W to X)
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WALE: 1. In knit fabrics, a column of loops lying lengthwise in the fabric. The number of wales
per inch is a measure of the fineness of the fabric. 2. In woven fabrics, one of a series of ribs,
cords, etc., running either warpwise or fillingwise.
WARP: 1. The set of yarn in all woven fabrics, that runs lengthwise and parallel to the selvage
and is interwoven with the filling. 2. The sheet of yarns wound together on a beam for the
purpose of weaving or warp knitting. (Also see WARP SHEET.)
WARP BEAM: A large spool or flanged cylinder around which the warp threads, or ends, are
wound in a uniform and parallel arrangement. (Also see BEAM.)
WARP-DRAWING: See DRAW-WARPING. Warp-drawn fibers may be taken up on packages
WARP HOLDING PLACE: See STICKER, 1.
WARP-KNIT FABRIC: A fabric that is knit with the yarns running lengthwise, e.g., tricot,
WARP KNITTING: See KNITTING, 1.
WARP PILE: The extra set of warp yarns that forms the surface in a double-woven pile fabric,
including types such as velvet and velour. Upholstery fabrics such as mohair, plush, and friezé
are produced by this method. (Also see PILE and VELVET FABRIC.)
WARP PRINTING: See PRINTING.
WARP SHEET: A sheet comprising up to several thousand ends that are combined to make up
the warp during preparation for weaving or warp knitting. (Also see WARP.)
WARP SIZING: See SLASHING.
WARP STREAKS: A fabric fault that shows as bands or streaks running warpwise. Warp
streaks should not be confused with reed marks.
WASH-AND-WEAR: A generic term applied to garments that satisfactorily retain their original
neat appearance after repeated wear and home laundering with little or no pressing or ironing. A
wash-and-wear garment is essentially free from undesirable wrinkles both during wear and after
laundering and retains any original pressed-in creases or pleats. The garments should meet
normal consumer demands for durability, color, stability, and shrinkage. The performance of a
wash-and-wear fabric or garment depends on several factors, including the types and amounts
(percentages) of fibers used, the fabric construction, the finishing treatment, the presence of a
colored pattern (either woven or printed), and the methods used for washing and drying. These
factors determine, in any specific instance, if a fabric or garment’s performance will meet
customer requirements. Variable conditions result in the varying behavior of a specific fabric or
garment. Garments are labeled to specify the appropriate care for optimal performance. (Also
see EASE-OF-CARE and DURABLE PRESS.)
WASHFASTNESS: The resistance of a dyed fabric to loss of color or change in properties
during home or commercial laundering.
WASTE: By-products created in the manufacture of fibers, yarns, and fabrics.
WATER IMBIBITION: See IMBIBITION.
WATER-JET LOOM: See JET LOOM.
WATERLESS DYEING: See DYEING, Solvent Dyeing.
WATERPROOF: A term applied to materials that are impermeable to water; waterproof fabrics
have had all their pores closed and are also impermeable to air and very uncomfortable.
WATER-REPELLENT: A term applied to fabrics that can shed water but are permeable to air
and comfortable to wear. These fabrics are produced by treating the material with a resin, wax, or
plastic finish that is not completely permanent.
WAVY CLOTH: See BAGGY CLOTH.
WAVY SELVAGE: See SLACK SELVAGE.
WEAK WEB: A web of fiber that, when being transferred from the card doffer to the calender
rolls to form sliver, does not have sufficient strength from fiber cohesion or clinging
entanglement to hold itself together while forming a continuous bridge in processing.
WEAK YARN: A yarn that is found to be either below standard breaking specifications or to be
weak enough to cause an abnormally high degree of stops in textile processing.
WEAR TEST: A test for fabric wear, abrasion, flexibility, washing, crushing, creasing, etc., in
which the fabric is made into a garment, worn for a specific time, then assessed for performance.
WEATHER-OMETER: An instrument used in measuring the weather resistance of textiles. It
can simulate various weather conditions such as sunlight, rain, dew, and thermal shock.
Weathering is accelerated to the degree that the effects of years of normal use are attained in only
WEAVE: A system or pattern of intersecting warp and filling yarns. There are three basic two
dimensional weaves: plain, twill, and satin. All other weaves are derived from one or more of
these types. (Also see PLAIN WEAVE, TWILL WEAVE, and SATIN WEAVE.)
WEAVING: The method or process of interlacing two yarns of similar materials so that they
cross each other at right angles to produce woven fabric. The warp yarns, or ends, run lengthwise
in the fabric, and the filling threads (weft), or picks, run from side to side. Weaving can be done
on a power or handloom or by several hand methods. (Also see LOOM and WOVEN FABRIC.)
WEB: 1. The wide film of fibers that is delivered from the card. 2. A similar product of other
web-forming equipment, such as that formed by air deposition and used to make nonwoven
fabrics. 3. A term loosely used for lightweight nonwoven fabrics. 4. See WEBBING.
WEBBING: Strong, narrow fabric, closely woven in a variety of weaves and principally used for
belts and straps that have to withstand strain (e.g., automobile seat belts, reinforcement of
upholstery, suspenders, etc.). Elastic webbing is made with spandex or rubber yarns in part of the
warp or filling, or both. (Also see WEB, 2.)
WEFT INSERTION: 1. Any one of the various methods, shuttle, rapier, water jet, etc., for
making a pick during weaving. 2. A marriage of warp knitting and weaving brought about by
inserting a length of yarn across the width of the knitting elements and fastening the weft yarn
between the needle loop and the underlap. (Also see METAP WEAVE-KNIT PROCESS.)
WEFT-KNIT FABRIC: See CIRCULAR-KNIT FABRIC and FLAT-KNIT FABRIC.
WEFT KNITTING: See KNITTING, 2.
WEIGHTED SILK: Silk that has been treated with metallic salts during dyeing and finishing to
increase the fabric’s weight and improve its drape. Over-weighting can cause deterioration of the
WELT: 1. A finished edge on knit goods, especially hosiery. In women’s stockings, it is a wide
band knitted from heavier yarn than the leg and folded on itself. 2. A small cord covered with
fabric and sewn along a seam or border to add strength. 3. A seam made by folding the fabric
double, generally over a cord, and sewing it. 4. A term sometimes used for piqué.
WET FORMING: The production of a nonwoven fabric web from an aqueous suspension of
fibers by filtering the short fibers onto a screen belt or perforated drum.
WET-LAID NONWOVEN: Fabric made by the wet-forming process. The short fibers typically
have more random orientation in the web and the web has more isotropic properties than carded
WET SPINNING: See SPINNING, 2.
WET STRENGTH: The measurement of the strength of a material when it is saturated with
water, normally relative to the dry strength.
WHIPCORD: A compact woven fabric having a very steep twill on the
face of the goods. Whipcord is used in dress woolens, worsteds, or wool
blends and in many types of uniforms.
WHIPPED CREAM: A type of crepe fabric produced from false-twisttextured
WHIPPED-IN FILLING: See PULLED-IN FILLING.
WHISKERS: Fine fibrils or crystals from polymers, metals, etc.
WHITE GOODS: A broad term describing any goods that have been finished in the white
WICKING: 1. Cord, loosely woven or braided tape, or tubing to be cut into wicks. 2. Dispersing
or spreading of moisture or liquid through a given area, vertically or horizontally; capillary action
WIDTH: A horizontal measurement of a material. In woven fabric, it is the distance from
selvage to selvage, and in flat-knit fabric, the distance from edge to edge.
WILLIAMS UNIT: A wet-processing unit for open-width processing of fabric. The fabric
passes up and down over rollers in the liquor. The unit is widely used for dyeing, washing,
pretreating, and aftertreating.
WILTON CARPET: Woven carpet in which the pile yarns are woven in as an integral part of
the carpet, being held in place by the filling, usually made on a loom with a Jacquard head. The
pile may be formed by wires and hooks or by weaving between two backings, in which case, the
pile ends are cut to form two separate carpets. Wilton carpets are made in two types: (1) cut pile,
e.g., tournia, Wilton moquette, plush, and velvet, and (2) loop pile, e.g., Brussels.
WINDING: Winding is the process of transferring yarn or thread
from one type of package to another to facilitate subsequent
processing. The rehandling of yarn is an integral part of the fiber and
textile industries. Not only must the package and the yarn itself be
suitable for processing on the next machine in the production process,
but also other factors such as packing cases, pressure due to winding
tension, etc., must be considered. Basically, there are two types of
winding machines: precision winders and drum winders. Precision
widers, used primarily for filament yarn, have a traverse driven by a
cam that is synchronized with the spindle and produce packages with
a diamond-patterned wind. Drum winders are used principally for
spun yarns; the package is driven by frictional contact between the
surface of the package and the drum.
WINDOW PANING: A fabric defect caused by nonuniform yarn.
When thin sections of yarn become grouped together, the resultant increase in the transparency of
the fabric is called window paning.
WIND RATIO: The number of wraps that an end or ends make in traversing from one side of a
wound package to the other side and back to the first side.
WOOD GRAIN: A fabric defect that consists of fillingwise streaks resembling the irregular
appearance of wood grain in lumber. Wood grain is usually caused by strained filling in quilling,
the tension being more pronounced near the butt of the quill.
WOOD PULP: The cellulosic raw material for viscose rayon and for acetate.
WOOL: The term is usually used for the fleece of sheep, but according to the Textile Fiber
Products Identification Act, wool is defined for purposes of labeling as: “The fiber from the
fleece of the sheep or lamb or hair of the Angora or Cashmere goat (and may include the socalled
specialty fibers from the hair of the camel, alpaca, llama, and vicuna) which has never been
reclaimed from any woven or felted wool product.”
Wool is used in a variety of blends in which it is combined with nearly all natural or
manufactured fibers. Wool fibers have scales that tend to interlock with each other, binding the
fibers together. This process is called felting. In blends, particularly those with manufactured
fibers, wool is used to improve the feel or appearance of finished products. Manufactured fibers
are sometimes blended with wool to enable the spinning of very fine or loosely twisted yarns with
increased tensile strength or to produce ease-of-care properties. Wool can be treated to control
shrinkage, to provide resistance to damage by moths, to impart stain-resistance, and to set
permanent creases in fabrics.
WOOLEN CARD: A type of roller card used in the woolen spinning system, usually consisting
of three cards in tandem: the breaker, intermediate, and finisher sections.
WOOLEN COUNT: The two systems used to determine woolen yarn counts in the U.S. are the
run system and the cut system. The run system has a standard of 1600 yards per hand, while the
cut system is based on 300 yards per hank.
WOOLEN CUT: A woolen yarn measure. A 1-cut woolen yarn has 300 yards in one pound of
WOOLEN RUN: A woolen yarn measure. A 1-run woolen yarn has 1,600 yards in one pound
of yarn, a 2-run yarn has 3,200 yards, and so on.
WOOLEN SYSTEM: The fundamental system of making yarns for woolen fabrics. In yarns
spun on the woolen system, the fibers are not parallel but are crossed in what appears to be a
haphazard arrangement. After blending, fibers produced on the woolen system are evenly
distributed in carding on two, three, or even four cards. From here, the split web, called roving,
goes to the spinning frame. In addition to wool, manufactured fibers, cotton, wastes, and noils
can be processed on the woolen system. In general, the fibers used are shorter and more highly
crimped than those used on the worsted system and are of the type that can be fulled.
WORKING LOSS: The irrecoverable loss of weight or yardage of a textile material that occurs
during a textile process.
WORK RECOVERY: The ratio of recoverable work to the total work required to strain a fiber a
specified amount under a given program of strain rate.
WORK-TO-BREAK: See ENERGY-TO-BREAK.
WORSTED: A general term applied to fabrics and yarns from combed wool and wool blends.
Worsted yarn is smooth-surfaced, and spun from evenly combed long staple. Worsted fabric is
made from worsted yarns and is tightly woven with a smooth, hard surface, Gabardine and serge
are examples of worsted fabrics.
WORSTED CARD: A type of roller card user for worsted-system processing. It usually
comprises two cards in tandem; the unit has a roller that carries the stock from the first card to the
feed-in of the second card.
WORSTED COUNT: A woolen yarn measure. A 1’s worsted yarn has 560 yards in one pound
WORSTED SYSTEM: A system of textile processing for manufacturing spun yarns from staple
fibers usually over 3 inches in length. The main operations are carding, combing, drafting, and
spinning. There are three basic systems of worsted yarn spinning: the Bradford (or English
system), the French (Alsatian or Continental system), and the American system.
WOVEN FABRIC: Generally used to refer to fabric composed of two sets of yarns, warp and
filling, that is formed weaving, which is the interlacing of these sets of yarns. However, there are
woven fabrics in which three sets of yarn are used to give a triaxial weave. In two-dimensional
wovens, there may be two or more warps and fillings in a fabric, depending on the complexity of
the construction. The manner in which the two sets of yarns are interlaced determines the weave.
By using various combinations of the three basic weaves, plain, twill, and satin, it is possible to
produce an almost unlimited variety of constructions. Other effects may be obtained by varying
the type of yarns, filament or spun, and the fiber types, twist levels, etc.
WRINKLE MARK: See SEAM MARK.
WRINKLE RECOVERY: That property of a fabric that enables it to recover from folding
WRINKLE RESISTANCE: That property of a fabric that enables it to resist the formation of
wrinkles when subjected to a folding deformation. Wrinkle resistance in a fabric is a desirable
attribute, but it is not easily measured quantitatively. Wrinkle resistance varies from quite low in
many fabrics to very high in resilient fabrics. In order to form a wrinkle, a fabric’s wrinkle
resistance must be overcome. The fabric may, however, produce strains and store potential
energy that can become evident as wrinkle recovery under suitable conditions.
WRONG COLOR PICK: See MIXED END or FILLING.
XANTHATING: A process in rayon manufacture in which carbon disulfide is reacted with alkali
cellulose to produce bright orange cellulose xanthate.
XENON-ARC LAMP: A type of light source used in fading lamps. It is an electric discharge in
an atmosphere on xenon gas at a little below atmospheric pressure, contained in a quartz tube.
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