Glossary of textile decoration


Wall hanging is a fine option in terms of decoration, but it also provides signifant improvement in terms of soundproofing and thermal insulation. Chose a floral print for bedrooms, a lightweight fabric for spacious rooms, terrycloth for bathrooms, wool or Alcantara for studies and dressing rooms. For further guidance, ask Pierre Frey retailers, to find them click on “Store Locator”. Do not forget to use fleece lining for soundproofing and thermal insulation, and also to prevent static electricity that might attract dust.


Refers to a kind of carpet to be laid wall to wall upon floorboards or directly on concrete. It is available in small width (0,70m) and also in 2, 4 or 5 metre-width. Woven or tufted, wall to wall carpet may come in plain or patterned velvet. Some carpets are also made with ciselé velvet, which features cut and uncut piles creating a pattern, not to mention a whole range of techniques and colours. Patterned carpet is actually harder-wearing than plain one. Carpet can be laid in two fashions: either fitted or glued-on. The glue-on technique is preferable when the carpet is lined with foam. If lined with jute, it is preferable in terms of comfort and durability to lay the carpet upon an underlay base. A wall to wall carpet can be turned into a broad width carpet, and trimmed with a band or a frieze. A room fitted with wall to wall carpet will appear bigger if framed with a contrasting-coloured frieze. Ask our specialists from the Pierre Frey rug and carpet department.


The Pierre Frey, Boussac and Bracquenié collections offer a wide range of styles and patterns to choose from. The beauty of our heritage or contemporary patterns is further enhanced by the traditional hand-made printing technique used. Before you embark on the adventure that is putting in and fitting wall paper, reading the following lexicon might prove useful: FAN-FOLD: A folding technique designed to make it easier to manipulate big wall paperstrips. ANGLE-SMOOTHING : Strips are cut and trimmed to follow precisely the shape of the ceiling, molding or skirting board. EDGE TO EDGE: Wall paper strips are fitted to stricty touch one another, without overlapping. WALL PAPER BRUSH: A special brush designed to smooth out previously-applied strips before they are marouflaged. PASTE BRUSH: it is indispensable to properly glue the wall paper strips. After use, rinse thoroughly and shake off excess water. COORDINATES: Wallpapers with different patterns designed to be associated. Coordinates often are of the same colour. FRIEZE: A decorative wallpaper strip used to adorn skirting boards and window and door frames. STRIP SWITCHING : Technique used to prevent colour variations for plain wallpapers. STRIP: Large band of wallpaper. MAROUFLAGE: Technique used to avoid blisters and folds that ensures a good adhesion of the wallpaper onto the wall. DYE BATH NUMBER: This colour identification number is tagged on the wrong side of the wallpaper roll. All rolls have to be dipped in the same dye bath to ensure colour homogeneity. VINYL WALLPAPER: PVC coated wallpaper. It is hard-wearing and waterproof. Expanded PVC may also be used, allowing relief wallpaper. FOLDED: Pasted wallpaper must be folded, yet without flattening the folds, to ensure maximum absorption of the glue paste. WALL PASTING: Glue paste is applied onto the wall to be covered with wallpaper, rather than on wallpaper itself. FLOORING SCRAPER: a tool used to smooth out the angles or air bubbles. DWELL TIME: The amount of time necessary after pasting and folding for the wallpaper to become soft and stretchy enough to hang. JOIN: Refers to the lengthwise distance separating two identical patterns. No Join: no extra-length of wallpaper is necessary to lign up the patterns. For plain wallpapers, hang the strips head to tail, to ensure good colour homogeneity. Straight join: For patterns to be aligned vertically: trim and cut the excess wall paper, and then paste back the cut patterns so they line up, a rather easy thing to do most of the time. Use a water scale to make sure patterns are perfectly lined up.


A key element of weaving: a set of lengthwise yarns are held in tension on a frame or loom. Warp ends are wound around a pair of sticks or beams in a spiral pattern. Warp ends include stuffer warp for lengthwise strength and stiffness, pile warp which forms the fabric surface tufts, and chain warp which interlaces with weft yarn to lock the structure together.


Textile warping is the process of creating the base yarn that runs top to bottom on woven cloth.


House linen is usually easily washable. Just make sure that the fabrics used are colourfast. Synthetic fibres are washable at low temperature (40 celsius) and require little ironing. Moire is not washable, Chintz looses its finish if watered, while cotton shrinks, unless it was previously treated. Trevira is not affected by washing. Check out the Pierre Frey catalogue or the pictograms featured on our labels.


Refers to fabrics that in their natural state absorb water, but which were treated, whether by impregnation or coating, so water does not run through its fibres. Example: Outdoor. See Hydrophobic.


There is nothing more chic than living in a house that, although it was recently decorated, looks as if it had been lived in for ages. Elegantly faded fabrics, such as imitation weathered velvet for instance, are an essential part of the trick of making what’s new look elegantly old. Faded linen Shabby F2484 or Petit Parc F2569 print both have this weathered chic quality.


Refers to the way the warp and weft threads interlace with each other. It is not contingent on the number or size of threads used (see Thread Count). There are three fundamental weave structures: Plain Weave (also called taffeta weave) is the most basic one, and it is strong and hard-wearing. Each weft thread crosses the warp threads by going over one, then under the next, and so on. Both sides are identical. Polyester and Silk both are filament yarn weave fabrics. Examples of cotton plain weave fabrics: cretonne, poplin, gingham; wool: flannel, woollen cloth; silk: crêpe de chine, taffetas, shantung… Twill is done by passing the weft thread over one or more warp threads and then under two or more warp threads and so on, with a step or offset between rows to create the characteristic diagonal pattern only visible on the front side. The twill weave dips of 45° from left to right or right to left. Examples of cotton twill weave fabrics: denim, flannelette, gabardine; wool: gabardine, baize, tricotine; Silk: surah, twill…Satin Weave is characterized by four or more weft yarns floating over a warp yarn or vice versa, four warp yarns floating over a single weft yarn, and is distinguished by its lustrous and even appearance. The fabric is called Satin String or Satin Frame. It is not as strong as the two other weaves, and sides are different. Examples of Satin weave fabrics in cotton: moleskin, sateen… Fabrics can be woven in various patterns by combining various weaves. See a product


See “Thread dyed” entry.


In weaving, refers to the seft of threads or yarns that run lengthways within selvages. It is the interlacing of weft yarns with warp yarns that creates a fabric. See “Warp and Pick” entries.


Refers to the weight (or mass) of a fabric, usually defined as the weight per square meter, or the weight per standard or shelf meter (full width). The heaviest fabric by Pierre Frey is Teddy Mohair velvet, with a weight of 1270 grams per linear meter.


Refers to a strong fabric using essentially the same weave as a steep gabardine. The distinct diagonal ribs of whipcord are very pronounced and the weft may be visible between the ribs on the right side, which is usually not the case for gabardines. Whipcord fabric can be made of cotton or, ideally, worsted or carded wool, especially for uniforms.


Refers to the length of fabric from one edge to another.


Refers to a type of carpet named after an eponymous city in England, where a specific weaving machine called wire loom was invented in the XVIIIth century. Wilton carpets are double-weft woven, and made with a variety of different wools, which ensure size stability and allow heavy-duty applications. Available in loop or cut velvet, with jute backing. Because of the apparition of new manufacturing techniques, plain and jacquard Wilton carpets are now considered highly traditional pile carpets. The beauty of Bracquenié patterns is particularly enhanced by Wilton carpets, but our creative team’s know how makes it possible to deliver these patterns in many different techniques, for an equally stunning result. Our Wilton carpets are all woven in France, in a factory founded in the XIXth century. Check out the endless possibilities with our skilled specialists from the Pierre Frey rug&carpet department.


Blinds are a window treatment alternative to curtains. A window blind is made with slats of fabric, wood, plastic or metal that adjust by rotating from an open position to a closed position by allowing slats to overlap. A lift cord allows the blind to be pulled up and stack tightly to top of window when desired. Make sure you opening the window will still be possible by leaving at least 30 centimeters between the blind frame and the ceiling. Blinds come in many forms (Venetian, Roman, Austrian, Persian blinds), they may be made of various fabrics: taffeta, seersucker, chintz., net curtain, lightweight fabric. Silk may also be used, but with a lining. They can be adorned with braids or embroidered. Ready-to-hang blinds are also available. Ask Pierre Frey retailers for guidance, and find them by clicking on “Storelocator”.


Refers to a patch of flat cloth that covers the uppermost part of a window, used to decoratively conceal drapery hardware. In bunting or draping form, they are commonly referred to as swags. Valances may be layered on top of sheer curtains or printed fabrics, edged with fringes, stencilled, made with a fabric that is different from the one used for curtains, hangs across brackets and drapes over the top of the window, or be asymmetrical.


Soft material made of sheep’s fur. It is woven and turned into many different fabrics, such as broadcloth, baize, chevron, flannel, damask, velvet. It is sometimes mixed with viscose or silk for much-appreciated extra warmth. It is also naturally nonflammable. These two reasons explain why wool is so popular when it comes to upholstery. Wool remains the fibre of choice for rugs and carpets, whether woven or tufted. See a product


The Wyzenbeek Test is used, just as the Martindale, to test the abrasion resistance of textile products/fabrics. Unlike the Wyzenbeek Test which complies with American norms, the Martindale Test depends on European norms. To give an order of magnitude, in regards to the equivalence between both tests, we consider that 40.000 towers of Martindale correspond to 30.000 Wyzenbeek. Resistance to rubbing is not the only factor to be considered to determine the use of a cloth. Other technical criteria must be taken into consideration (tendency to pill, colour discharge…). Make sure you have a close look at the technical pictograms found in our catalogue and on our labels, as they have been approved by Pierre Frey specialized engineers.