What is canvas fabric?

Canvas is a strong, tightly woven fabric that has many uses. In the past the fabric was used to make sailcloth, tents and painter's canvas, but today these fabrics are also widely used in the interior design and fashion industries.

We will tell you everything you need to know about the typical properties and features of canvas fabric in this blog.

What material is canvas made of?

When thinking of a canvas fabric, cotton is often immediately thought of, but a canvas fabric can also be made from other fibers, namely:

Types of canvas fabric

Since canvas can be made of various materials, there are different types of canvas fabric. At House of U you can print on cotton canvas and polyester canvas. Both types are available in ecological or recycled fabrics.

What is cotton canvas?

Most often, canvas fabrics are made from the base material of cotton. There are different types of cotton canvas fabrics. The canvas can either be made from regular cotton, organic cotton, recycled cotton or a mix of these. There can also be differences in thickness, weight and how tightly the canvas is woven.

Properties of canvas fabric

Canvas fabric has a few special properties, making them great for printing. They are durable and strong, and therefore long-lasting. At the same time, they are easy to care for and wrinkle resistant, as well as breathable and absorbent.

In the past the fabric was used to make sailcloth, tents and painter's canvas, but today these fabrics are also widely used in the interior design and fashion industries. Originally, canvas was a sturdy fabric made from thicker yarns of hemp fibers. There are a number of variations in the production of a canvas fabric. 

Depending on the base material and thread density, different properties are created. Here are the typical properties of canvas fabric in order:

  • Coarse, sturdy fabric, made from thicker yarns.
  • Robust and durable, therefore long-lasting
  • Easy to clean and wrinkle resistant
  • Versatile use
  • With tightly woven fabric: wind and water resistant
  • With open weave: breathable and absorbent

Is canvas waterproof?

As described above, tightly woven canvas fabrics are water resistant. This is because the fibers of this fabric expand as soon as they absorb water. This closes the gaps between the threads, making it harder for water to pass through the fabric.

This does not mean that no water can get through at all, because canvas fabrics are not 100% waterproof. Canvas fabrics can be made waterproof by impregnating the fabric.

Is canvas ecofriendly and sustainable?

Canvas is generally a sustainable fabric because it is a sturdy fabric that is long-lasting. Of course, it also depends on what fabric the canvas is made of. If you are looking for a sustainable canvas, it is best to pay attention to what fabric it is made of.

At House of U, we have canvas fabrics that are made from organic cotton and/or recycled cotton. In addition, we also have a canvas made from recycled polyester, namely the U-circular Canvas.

Print samples of these sustainable canvas fabrics can be found in the Eco Fabric Kit or the fabric book.

How is canvas fabric made?

Canvas is woven in a simple way, namely with a plain weave. This means that the weft thread runs over and under the warp threads. Another weaving technique that you sometimes see with a canvas fabric is the Panama weave.

What is (cotton) canvas fabric used for?

Canvas fabrics are suitable for casual pants and jackets, and especially for shoes and accessories (bags, pouches, cases). But also for decorative items for the home and for cushion covers of garden furniture.

Advantages and disadvantages of canvas fabric

By choosing a canvas fabric for your project, you can be sure that you will enjoy it for a long time. Some advantages of canvas:

  • Canvas fabric is from high quality.
  • Canvas fabrics are versatile. Anywhere a sturdy, thicker fabric is needed, canvas is an ideal fabric.
  • Easy to maintain.
    Thanks to our special digital printing process using certified dyes (no pigment) and a subsequent washing, you can wash our printed cotton and polyester fabric with ease. 

A disadvantage of canvas is that the fabric tends to fray. This makes it essential to finish open edges.

Printing on canvas fabric at House of U

Our range consists of various types of canvas fabric, both cotton canvas and polyester canvas. You can also choose sustainable U-circular canvas. Likewise, we have canvas pillows, printed with a design of your choice.

With our online design generator, you can quickly and easily upload your design and have it printed on canvas fabric. Or you can choose another fabric of your choice for your custom fabric print.

Want to see and feel the fabric first? That is possible by requesting a printed sample, the Eco Fabric Kit or the fabric book. The fabric book contains printed samples of all the fabrics in our collection.

Order our fabric book Order our Eco fabric kit

We are also happy to advise you personally. Please contact us for more information.

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