What is poplin fabric?

Poplin is a plain weave with a fine, cross-ribbed surface texture. It is a fabric made with a particular weaving technique, namely rib weave (a derivative of flat weave). In this blog, we take a closer look at the question, "What is poplin fabric?"

What does poplin mean and where does it come from?

The term poplin comes from ''papelino,'' a fabric made in Avignon, France, in the 15th century. It was named after the Papal Court and after the French ''papeline,'' a type of silk fabric from the same period.

Until about the 20th century, poplin was mainly used to make clothing made of silk, cotton or heavy wool that would be suitable for winter.

What is poplin cotton fabric?

The quality of cotton poplin is similar to that of cotton, but more finely woven. Poplin cotton is also a very strong and rich fabric that lasts a long time. This makes poplin cotton a durable fabric of good quality.

Difference between cotton and poplin

The difference between cotton and poplin is that cotton is the basic fiber and poplin is a weaving technique. So cotton is a fabric, while poplin is a structure. Together, they make up poplin cotton.

View our Cotton fabrics

What is poplin fabric made of?

A characteristic of a poplin fabric is a very fine, dense warp yarn and a coarser, fuller weft yarn. This creates the typical ribbing.

Originally, it was made with a fine silk warp and a thicker worsted yarn in the weft (Irish poplin). Nowadays other yarns are also used, such as cotton, linen, viscose, wool, synthetic fiber yarns or mixtures thereof.

The base material used in making poplin fabric is often included in the name, such as cotton poplin fabric. So cotton poplin is a poplin made from cotton yarns.

What is stretch poplin fabric?

Most of the poplin fabrics are made from 100% (organic) cotton, but there are also fabrics with a poplin weave that have a percentage of elastic yarn creating a poplin fabric with stretch.

What is polyester poplin fabric?

In addition to cotton, other materials are also used in this weave. Like the polyester poplin fabric that’s made from artificial fibers and is one of the most inexpensive fabrics.

So in short, what is poly poplin fabric made of? It’s a poplin fabric that’s made from (recycled) polyester.

What is the thickness of poplin fabric?

There are two different poplin fabrics within the House of U collection; one regular and one sustainable poplin fabric. The Cotton Popeline has a weight of 125 gr/m2 and the Cotton Popeline Eco is a bit heavier and has a weight of 135 gr/m2.

Cotton Popeline
Cotton Popeline

Properties of poplin fabric

Poplin fabric has some good properties and is ideal to use for a design.

  • Poplin is durable. It has a strong structure with a smooth surface. It feels almost silky and has no stretch.
  • It has a smooth surface. When weft and warp threads are of the same material and have a similar number of yarns, the fabric has a smooth woven surface with no noticeable ribbing.
  • Does not crease easily. Shirts made of this material are easy to iron and do not crease easily. You can wash poplin cotton at 30 degrees and iron at up to 110 degrees. However, we do recommend washing the fabric once before using it. That way you avoid shrinking the garment later.
  • Light in weight. Because the fabric is cool and lightweight, it’s perfect for summer clothing.
  • Low-cost. A poplin fabric is easy to manufacture and therefore the prices will be lower.

Pros and cons of poplin fabric

Benefits of poplin fabric

As read above, poplin fabric has a lot of benefits. The fabrics is strong and durable, and therefore it will last a long time. In addition, poplin is easy to clean, because it does not stain easily. Since the fabric is also easy to iron, our cotton poplin fabrics are perfect for poplin blouses.

Disadvantages of poplin fabric

Of course, the fabric has also some disadvantages. It is a very cool and lightweight fabric and therefore not very suitable for winter clothing. It doesn’t lock in the heat when you are wearing it during those cold days.

What is cotton poplin fabric used for?

Cotton poplin fabric is a very versatile fabric because it’s strong and durable, but also keeps you cool in summer. Therefor it’s mostly used for tops that breath well during those hot days. Also a poplin dress is the perfect option during summer!

Thibault Kuhn
Designed by Thibault Kuhn and printed on Cotton Popeline by House of U

A well-known garment made from poplin cotton is the poplin blouse. Thanks to its properties, it can be worn in both formal and casual situations. Besides the blouse, the poplin pajama pants is a popular item to wear.

Depending on the number of yarns used, poplin is also used for more formal clothing such as poplin shirt, blouses, pants and jackets. 

Poplin vs twill

Poplin and Twill are quite similar in some ways, but are still very different! They are both woven in a different way. While poplin has a fine smooth surface, a twill has a diagonal line in the fabric.

Co Popeline Eco                 Co Gabardine Eco
Cotton Popeline Eco                                                                                Cotton Gabardine Eco

If you are searching for a fabric that will keep you cool during summer, the poplin is the best option because it’s lighter in weight and more breathable. Twill is the better option when you are searching for a warmer fabric, because it’s thicker and does lock the heat more.

Poplin vs linen

Poplin and linen are both very comfortable to wear, perfect for summer clothing and breathable. The biggest difference between these fabrics is that poplin is more durable and strong. Also, Linen creases more in comparison with poplin fabric.

Maintaining poplin fabric

Poplin fabric is very easy to handle; you can wash it on low and high temperatures, does not stain easy and it’s very easy to iron when you have wrinkles in your clothing!

However, we do recommend to wash the poplin fabric according to our washing instructions.

Sewing poplin fabric

It doesn’t matter if you are an experienced designer or a beginner, poplin is very easy to work with.
This is thanks to the smooth surface and silky feel.

In the last few years, embroidery became very popular and poplin was often used. It’s so easy to work with this fabric, because you can easily turn it into your favorite long lasting piece of clothing like a poplin suit or poplin jacket.

Printing on poplin fabric

Poplin material is a very suitable fabric for printing. The fabric is known for presenting its color well.

We use digital printing on poplin fabric, where we print, steam, wash and finish the fabric. We also use ecological inks to print the designs on this fabric.

We have two kinds of poplin fabrics:

1.Cotton Popeline 2.Cotton Popeline Eco 

Fabric 1. is our Cotton Popeline. Fabric 2. is our Cotton Popeline Eco.

View our Cotton Popeline Eco View our Cotton Popeline

Custom printed poplin fabric at House of U

Do you want your own design printed on poplin fabric? This is very easy at House of U. You can upload your design in our design tool and have this printed on poplin fabric by the yard.

Do you still find it difficult to choose and would you rather see and feel our fabrics first? Then order the fabric swatches you want. Or you can order our complete fabric book or the Eco Fabric Kit, which contains all our sustainable fabrics.

Order our fabric book Order our Eco Fabric Kit

If you still can't quite figure it out, or if you still have questions, we will be happy to help you personally. Do not hesitate to contact us.

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