Glossary of textile decoration


This magnificent weave is coming from Syria. Damask is a fabric with a glossy warp-faced pattern against a duller ground, or the other way round, according to the way the light is reflected. This iridescence reminds one of the shimmering quality of Damascus steel. The actual name of the fabric is derived from that city. The pattern is created by the combining of two different weaves, Damask can be made of silk, wool, linen…This figured fabric was first seen in Europe as soon as the Vth century. Reversible and monochrome, it is perfect for classical settings. Its overall appearance, and especially the stark contrast between the matte ground and the shiny patterns, makes it the perfect cover fabric for grand-looking sofas, armchairs and curtains. The techniques used to weave Damask are many, varying according to local tradition. The most popular colours for Damask are Cramoisi Red and Gold. Example: Angelo. See a product


Refer to a mercerized cotton or plain yarn weave. It comes in matte and shiny, tone-on-tone white, and is mostly used for household linen. It is a cotton or linen imitation of the matte and shiny quality typical of Damask that has been very popular since the XVIth century. Today, old school style damasse table cloths, bed sheets or bath towels are being reinvented, and come in new contemporary patterns and bright colours.


Derived from old French word “cati”, a dressing procedure giving firmness to fabrics. Industrial decatizing consists in winding fabric onto a perforated roller, and blowing steam through it. Fabric thus acquires extra-puff and sheen, as well as size stability (no shrinkage).


Refers to a unit of measure for the linear mass density of fibres. It is defined for silk and some chemical fibres as the mass in grams per 9000 meters of strand. This unit is still in use today, and its abbreviation is “den”.


A rugged and hard-wearing cotton twill textile, originally used for working garments. Also known as cotton jean cloth, it is sometimes mixed with polyester fibres. Warp yarns are traditionally coloured blue, black or grey and Weft yarns in white or ecru. Denim can also be used as wall hanging thanks as it keeps its shape over time. Easycare and hard-wearing, it is also perfect for Sofa covering, especially adorned with a colourful braid.


Dinner or dessert plates available in china or earthenware, all decorated with our iconic patterns: to discover the Pierre Frey Dinnerware Range, click on “Accessories”.


A Dobby Loom is a type of floor loom that controls the whole warp threads using a device called a dobby. It produces plain fabrics. Not to be mistaken with Jacquard loom.


Refers to the original historic sketch that was the inspiration for the most beautiful fabrics. The House of Pierre Frey owns various splendid documents, and uses them every now and again in new colours. They are listed with various museums and some of them are leased temporarily to other manufacturers and upholsterers. To name just a few: Berain, 100% cotton, 140cms wide by Braquenié.


Refers to circular motif used to adorn a fabric. Dots are tiny round marks of variable diameter, coming in a variety of colours. They are placed in the foreground, and are designed to contrast with the background, which can either be white, or coloured. Dots may be woven (though, of course, a woven dot will never be a perfect circle, but visually speaking, it looks as if), or printed F2591 Tabriz, or embroidered (F2591 Tabriz). Other techniques may also be used, such as flocking. Example: F2598 Alpina and O7715 Boussac Tequila. See a product


A set made of two distinct fabrics stitched or bound together, each side being potentially the front side. Example: F2513 Sablons, F2593 Uma. See a product


A kind of irregular, raw silk thread reeled from the cocoon of two silk worms that have nested together. The fabric is very irregular and shows many slubs, giving the fabric an uneven and rustic appearance. It is very popular for cushions and curtains, thanks to its ruggedly exotic charm. By extension, fabrics that are not made with silk, yet imitate its raw, rough look are also called Douppioni. Example: Croisé Collobrière F0556. See a product


Refers to the inherent property of a fabric, which allows a fabric to orient itself into graceful folds and pleats when acted upon by force of gravity. The heaviest fabric by Pierre Frey is Teddy mohaire velvet, with a weigth of 1270 grams per linear meter.


Refers to a kind of thick ribbon used to decorate curtains, or to make the edges of a rug look neat and clean, or to hide the mechanism of venetian blinds. May feature weaved patterns (flowers, geometrical designs) when adorning carpets or bedspreads. Ask a professional upholsterer to help you choose a tape that will be in keeping with the colours of the Pierre Frey fabrics.


Refers to a type of small floral print weave once used to make waistcoats for men. It is usually made of silk yarns, with canetille woven contrasted background. Coming in floral print or geometrical motif Cotton Jacquard, it is perfect for spectacular blinds. Combined to large patterns, it is also ideal for seat covering. See a product


A shiny and luxurious satin weave traditionally made with silk. It is exclusively used for women’s ready-to-wear and couture.


Refers to a kind of quilted comforter from Scandinavia, filled with down, feathers or synthetic fibres, the latter being easy-care, machine-washable and dryable, hypoallergenic, mold and moth-resistant. Duvets are dressed with covers.


Liquid medium, used to enhance or finish a fabric, and give it its final features. Using the same dye-bath ensures the homogeneity of all fabrics dipped into it.