How to determine the right side of the fabric. What is its difference from the purl
How to determine the right side of the fabric. What is its difference from the purl

Before buying material for sewing, you should know how to determine the front side of the fabric by the edge, pattern, pile, etc. After all, the appearance of the product will depend on its choice. But the most important thing to do is to determine the sides before cutting the product. It is not recommended to do such an important thing in the evening and under very bright artificial lighting, as it distorts reality. In the morning it may turn out that the choice made was erroneous, and the fault of everything is an optical illusion.

How to determine the right side of the fabric

Scissors on fabric

When you come to the store or look at the fabrics on the things you have at home, you will notice that they differ quite a lot in appearance. Their difference can be both by the type of surface (openwork, embroidered, with a woven pattern), and by the type of color (variegated, printed, smoothly dyed or bleached). There are also jacquard multi-colored fabrics - tapestry. Such fabricsare considered difficult to manufacture, but it is very easy to determine the front side on them.

Many people know that, depending on their fibrous composition, fabrics undergo different finishes. Natural ones are singeed, bleached, dyed. All finishing is done on one side of the product - the front. When weaving, all irregularities and knots are hidden on the wrong side, therefore, on the front side, all fabrics are smoother and brighter, with a clean surface or, conversely, with a relief, convex pattern. It will also be different to the touch (smooth and pleasant, has a clearer, embossed pattern).

pile fabric

How to tell the right side of a fabric from the wrong side

You should know that fabrics are single-sided and double-sided. The wrong side and the front side of one-sided fabrics are quite different. Bilateral ones differ slightly or do not differ at all. Sometimes both sides of the canvas can be used equally.

Front side of different types of fabrics

So, how to determine the front side on plain fabrics and not only:

  • Printed fabric: where it is brighter, there is the right side.
  • Fabric with a pattern (woven): On such fabrics, the design on the front side will be clearer and more prominent.
  • Fabrics with satin and satin weaves. On the front side, these weaves have a more shiny and smooth surface, the hem goes at different angles, and have a beautiful appearance. From the inside, these fabrics look more like canvases with plain weaves.
Various types of fabrics

Fabric with sequin trim, lurex metallic thread, embossed, leather-look finish, embroidery. In fabrics made from mixed raw materials, the front side will always look “expensive”. In all cases, the wrong side will be superior in beauty to the front. The embroidery threads will lie flat, without knots, the stitch will cover the design completely

More complex features for determining the front side

Not all pile fabrics have pile on the front. In bumazee, the pile side is the wrong side, but usually this fabric has a printed pattern and a beautiful smooth surface from the face. But velvet, velveteen, velor is beautiful from the side of the pile, so it is difficult to make a mistake in determining the front side. For example, plain flannel refers to a double-sided fabric - it has the same color on both sides, plain weave and villi.

cotton fabric

The drape has a smooth pile on the front side, and it is located in one direction, or there is a dense, lint-free pattern. This type of fabric may have a looser weave on the wrong side.

This also applies to cloth. It is, in most cases, plain weave and heavily tufted, which leads to some difficulties in the process of determining the front side. It is necessary to forcefully run your fingers from different sides and in different directions, and the side where the pile is less dense, of less quality, is the wrong side.

What to do if all the above methods of how to determine the right side of the fabric did not give an answer? Canidentify the side by the quality of the surface of matter. That is, the front side will be the side where the surface of the fabric does not have fluffs, nodules, it is smoother. The presence of fluff is inherent only in fabrics made from natural fibers.

To determine the presence of villi or the brightness of the color, the matter should be brought to eye level and looked at the light. If it was not possible to detect pronounced defects, then such a fabric can be attributed to bilateral.

Determining the side of the web along the edge

You can identify the right side of the fabric by the edge (both by its quality and by the holes on it). The edge will be of better quality on the front side. When the fabric is stretched over the calenders during the finishing process, holes are left. It is generally accepted that they should be convex at the top, and concave from the inside, but in practice it happens the other way around.

Patterned fabric


Before cutting complex fabrics, it is necessary in several places, preferably in inter-pattern lunges, to designate the front side. This is usually done in small, drawing crosses. This is important not only in order not to confuse parts when sewing, but also for trimming slats, pickups, flaps, etc.

If all the visual methods have been tried, and doubts have not disappeared, do not forget about tactile sensations, because the sensitivity of the fingers will never fail.

It also happens that the seamstress obviously wants to choose the wrong side (the one that for the people who created the fabric is the wrong side), because it seems to her, on the contrary, more attractive.

And if soand it was not possible to choose one of the parties with full confidence, then no one except the owner of the finished product will know about it, because everything is known in comparison.

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