Last Updated on March 21, 2024 by Shariful Alam

There are so many types of high quality Plain weaving fabrics in today’s market. Plain weave is the simplest weaving method used to make fabrics.

Have you ever gone shopping and surprised to see a variety of high-quality fabrics with distinct properties? Finding the right one is really hard. Though you are a fashionista, might be overhelmed by the vast varities. End up choosing wrong fabric!

With several years of trade experiencxe in this field, I want to share my wisdom to simplify your experience.

In this article, we cover the plain weaving fabrics. Give you a glimpse plain woven fabric, traits & related aspects to satisfy your thirst.

Plain weaving is one of the basic weaving method out of three. Mostly used to produce thin, lightweight, aesthetic forms of fabric.

Let’s jump into it

traditional plain weaving

traditional plain weaving

Basic weaving

Fabric is made up of cotton, silk, linen & other fibers. The special process used to make fabric from yarn is called weaving.

Weaving is a fabric manufacturing process that involves combining two individual sets of threads or yarns in specific patterns to create a fabric, even a cloth. The process is performed on a loom. It is a special device that make fabric manufacturing simple.

Here weave refers to the manner the warp yarns and filling yarns twine each other. However, the weaving process goes different as per types of fabric. We see variations in fabric quality, finishing, and durability.

There are five basic types of weaves that we see in today’s textile. They are modifications of the earliest weaving methods. You can see the most common fabric weaving :

  • Plain weave
  • Basketweave
  • Twill weave
  • Satin weave
  • Leno weave

Plain weave

This weave involves two parallel yarns where the weft threads are called filling yarn which passes over and under each warp yarn. It produces a high number of intersections and the process repeats until the whole fabric is done. Plain weave is the most elementary weave that results in a strong, durable, and versatile cloth.

Plain weaving is also called tabby weave or calico weave and is considered the fundamental fabric weaves in textile. You can find the similar weave texture in rib and basket weave with a few changes in the structure of filling and warp yarn.

What is a plain woven fabric?

Fabrics made with plain weaving method are called plain woven fabric. Fabrics can differ from each other in so many applications from the type of fiber like cotton to the weaving method itself! So, we see many type of fabrics. That fabrics we use for different purposes.

You are familiar with some common forms of plain woven fabrics such as muslin, flannel, chiffon, organdy, etc.

17 Plain weaving Fabrics

There are plenty of plain weaving fabrics. All of them are versatile but have relavant characteristic including lightweight, sheerness, softness, etc.

Here are the seventeen common plain weave fabrics that you mifgt use for clothing or other purposes.

Plain weave fabric

Plain weave fabric


  •   Muslin

Muslin is the most versatile plain weave cotton fabric in the market. It features a plain weave with higher thread counts. Pure and organic fibers are used to make muslin fabrics. The muslin fabrics you see are mostly made of constructions featuring 200 thread count on average. Nowadays cotton muslin beddings are the most trending items in ecommerce sites. 

Genuine Dhaka Muslin was a luxury clothing material. It revived after 170 years of disappearance. hope it will come to the market soon.

  •   Chambray

Many might think it’s a lightweight version of denim. But chambray is a fabric made of plain weave, not twill weave. Thick yarns are woven precisely to make durable chambray fabrics

Chambray is a popular shirting fabric for summer and spring fashion. Some heavy chambray fabrics can be used to make durable upholstery items too. Although it doesn’t have any smooth texture. Chambray still blends perfectly over the skin. 

  •   Poplin

Poplin is another shirting fabric. A key feature of this fabric is you can print in many ways. Poplin textile weighs less than other durable fabrics. 

Most poplin fabrics have regular plain weaving. Even the EPI and PPI ratios are almost the same. Thus, the possibility of wrinkling remains low. You can use this variant of cotton fabric for many years. 

  • Organdy

Cotton organdy fabric is a crip material for dressing and layering. It also has a plain weave construction. The acid and cold wash or finish make this fabric crisp and sustainable. 

Another variant of organdy is organza. It mainly consists of synthetic materials. There is a thin line between organza and organdy. The material-related features are the only differences here. 

  •  Taffeta

Taffeta is a fabric that got recognition along with the plain weave in textile history. The primary material for taffeta fabric is silk. But nowadays, you can find rayon and polyester taffeta fabrics. 

The main use of taffeta fabrics is in wedding or party dresses for women. The glossy smooth outlook of the fabric is bound to catch people’s eye in no time. 

  •  Voile

Voile is a sheer fabric. But not made of leno weaving. Instead, a tight and open plain weave is the key to making this fabric. Voile looks almost like many other sheer fabrics in the market. 

The use of voile in making veils, curtains, masks, dress lining, etc. is very common these days. You can find both organic and synthetic versions of voile fabric. 

  •  Georgette

The creator of this fabric, Georgette de la Plante, created georgette fabric with the purpose of making cozy and stylish fabric. Back then, it was made of only silk. That made it pretty expensive. 

Now you can find several nylon or polyester blend yarns used to make georgette fabric by the plain weave. Still now, georgette dresses are in demand during summer. 

  •  Cheesecloth

Cheesecloth is a very thin and lightweight fabric. It was invented to protect the cheese from the whey. Besides, dairy companies and professional kitchens use them to protect, preserve, and present several edible items. 

This fabric is also made of plain weave. The only material to make cheesecloth is Pure cotton fibers 

  •  Velvet

Velvet is a soft and smooth fabric good for dressing. Velvet itself is an example of smoothness. Organic velvet fabric is pretty expensive. You can find synthetic velvet fabrics that can be smooth and shiny, but not as soft as the original ones. 

  • Flannel

You can find both plain and twill weave flannels. Plain-woven flannel fabric might not be as durable as twill flannel. But plain flannel is also soft and insulative.

Brushed flannel treats sensitive skin very gently. However, the fabric is more known for it’s heat insulative nature. You can stay warm and cozy wearing flannel clothes during winter. 

  • Buckram

Buckram fabric offers a loose plain weave pattern. Yet, the fabric is stiff enough to give structure for several fabric-made constructions. 

The main use of buckram fabric is to create a base layer for objects. For example, you can find buckram in collar and cuff plates. Sometimes, people also use buckram to cover valuable objects like large books. 

  • Crepe

Crepe has its own type of plain weaving patterns. It is mainly for women’s attire and fashion. 

But recently many fashion houses are making unisex apparels using modern crepe construction. The fabric looks very light and breathable. One can wear crepe fabric for better comfort and sustainability. 

  • Chiffon

Chiffon is well-known for making bold and semi-transparent clothes. The fabric absorbs less moisture than other sheer fabrics. It is also made of simple criss cross weaving patterns. 

Fancy blouses and skirts are the most popular end products of chiffon fabric. Besides, some event management houses use this fabric to decorate hall rooms and dining spaces for parties. 

  • Batiste

Batiste fabric is good for making undergarments. Several popular brands use cotton batiste more than any other fabric to make lingeries. 

Batiste fabric is also good for being lightweight and soft. Cotton batiste is good for indoor outfits like gowns, maxi, etc. 

  • Canvas

Canvas is one of the durable plain-woven fabrics. It is thicker and heavier than fabrics like chambray and poplin. 

This fabric makes good upholstery items. Also, you can make work dresses using cotton canvas fabric. It doesn’t wear or tear easily. You also need to do minimum maintenance to keep canvas fabric items in good condition. 

  •  Calico

Calico is a half-baked fabric that doesn’t undergo any sort of dyeing or finishing process. The fabric is produced right after weaving. 

The Indian fabric is cheap and good for average clothing. The color of the fabric remains natural and safe for the skin. 

  • Khadi

Khadi fabric resembles the protests and demand for rights. The people of the Indian subcontinent made and used the khadi fabric to show their nationalism and go against the oppression of the British Empire. 

Back then, the British East India Company broke the backbone of local textiles to benefit their own industries. Handmade khadi products were created as a stand against such a lowly act. 

Characteristics of plain weave fabrics

Plain weave fabrics have distinguished characteristics compared with the other woven fabrics. It provides loosely woven fabrics that are comfortable and breathable.

Muslin is a significant example of plain weave fabric that is historically known for its softness and the extremely fine yarn. You can see plain weave fabrics has a versatile use in clothing, quilting, sheeting, and so on.

Here are some characteristics of plain weave fabrics :

Simple weaving pattern

It is one of the basic textile weaves that has no complex weaving pattern. The process is going through passing the implementation of the filling yarn over and under the warp yarns. It provides excellent results with a combination of colorful yarns & design.

Thread count

Thread count is a quality measurement count in the textile industry that determines how tightly or loosely the fabric has been woven. Plain weave usually comes tightly woven in general. But you can see many loosely woven cotton fabric.

By tweaking a little in the number of warp yarns, weaver can alter filling yarns to make a variation in the fabric.

Texture stability

Plain weave technique produces a high number of intersections using the warp and weft yarn that creates an identical checkerboard pattern fabric. It results strong and durable clothing good for all uses.

The more crossing points or intersections, the more firm the cloth will be.

No right or wrong side

Plain woven fabrics usually don’t have any specific right or wrong side. They come with the same finish on both sides. Unless the fabric is printed or have a diferent finish, you can’t understand the right or wrong side.


The fabrics do not matte easily. But tend to wrinkle and has a high absorbency than other weaves.

Strong and don’t stretch

Although plain weave creates strong fabrics that don’t have elasticity. So the fabrics don’t stretch in common unless the thread is elasticized.

Maximum number of binding points

Plain woven fabrics have high intersections. It means, has a maximum number of binding points that is practically true. Considering the twill weave and satin weave, they don’t bind the warp and weft thread as frequently as plain weaving.

What are the advantages of plain weave fabrics?

Plain weave fabrics are versatile, most comfortable fabric patterns to use in making clothing. Here are some common advantages of plain weave,

·         Easy to produce

·         Durable

·         Nice appearance

·         can be produced using handlooms

·         Lightweight and breathable

What are the disadvantages of plain weave?

Despite having lots of advantages, plain weave fabrics might have a few potential issues which are,

·         Don’t stretch

·         Easy to wrinkle

·         Doesn’t allow for much design flexibility


Do you have any other questions on your mind about plain weave fabric? If so, you can take a look at the frequently asked questions (FAQ) regarding this topic.

I believe, You will find the answer.

What is plain weave cotton fabric?

Plain weave cotton fabric means the fabric is made by cotton with plain weave technique. Plain weave is the most basic form of weaving used to make quality fabric.

Is denim a plain weave?

Technically denim isn’t a plain weave. It is more likely twill weave and involves a 3×1 warp and weft pattern in most cases. However, denim’s alternative like chambray is made with plain weaving.

Why these fabrics are so popular?

These plain weaving fabrics are so comfy, durable & premium quality. These fabrics satisfy the needs of the people. Though it’s relatively expensive, the fabric made clothing & other things are so popular.

What is plain weave fabric used for?

Plain weave fabrics can be used for a variety of purposes such as clothing, making upholstery fabrics, moisture absorbing, wall hanging art, producing comfortable dresses, etc.

Final Words: Plain weaving fabrics

We already gives a basic insght about plain weaving fabrics. The simplest weave pattern that creates so many types of awesome fabrics. We already dicussed a lot. Our every day clothing to Home decor, this pattern is every where.

Here, You can know more about plain weaving technique.

Shariful Alam

Shariful Alam

Shariful Alam Pavel, A fashion lover, passionate marketer. Love to share wisdom based on real life experience to enrich knowledge.
Founder of Muslin Dhaka, a brand, speaks the truth about royal muslin and fashion. Explore the digital fashion universe with organic cotton muslin and much more!