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testing fiber content

bonkers | Posted in General Discussion on

Hi All, Well I took a chance and bought fabric online. The fabric was listed as 100% silk but it feels like poly to me. Does any one remember how to test fibers? I read it somewhere, but I can`t find it in any of my books or magazines. I`ll probably use it anyway but would like to know for sure because of the washing or ironing issue. We are covered in ice this morning [ feb 25] but thankfully the electric is still on. Hate to have no E-mail or Threads to read!!! Thanks, Bonkers


  1. User avater
    Thimblefingers | | #1

    Silk will burn while the flame is applied, but is self-extinguishing when you remove the flame.  It smells a little like burning feathers.  It will probably leave a small crunchy bead along the burnt edge. 

    Polyester burns and melts, has a pungent odor, and leaves a hard bead along the burned edge.  It is not self-extinguishing.

    Hope this helps!

  2. Cherrypops | | #2

    bonkers, have a look at this:


    Fabric identification for many types.


  3. HeartFire2 | | #3

    please let us know after you do a burn test. polyester will make a melted glob of plastic, silk will turn to ash that can be rubbed away.

    1. bonkers | | #4

      Thanks ladies for all your help. I tried the burn test and the fabric seem to be silk. It just didn`t feel like what I expected. The website-Fabrics is a good one. I know there are a millon of them I haven`t found yet being new to the internet. This website has become a daily habit for me along with my e-mail!! Thanks to Threads for hosting it. I live in northern Indiana  30 miles from South Bend. Too far to jump in the car and go fabric shopping. The little town close by has only a Jo-Annes with a very limited selection. I thought the internet would be the answer, but I don`t know if I`ll like what I get. Have any of you had good luck with online fabric shopping?  Just no substitute for feeling and squeezing!!! Bonkers

      1. WandaJ | | #5

        You are right, there is no substitute for feeling and squeezing the fabric; however, there has not been one time when I have not been dissatisfied with my online fabric purchases. After a while you will find that you gravitate toward specific fabric sites, particularly those whose purchases have been satisfying. What I found is that I have come to 'trust' the sellers description of the fabrics, even the ones I've done business with on e-Bay. 

        1. bonkers | | #6

          Wanda J, I guess my main problem with the online purchases is the color. The silk fabric I bought looked much lighter in the sample than when I got it. I still plan to use it, just not for the garment I picked it for.It is kind of like ordering clothing from a catalog I guess.Do you have some favorite sites? I ordered this from The Fabric Club. It arrived in just a few days, maybe I`ll try them again. There are so many sites to explore and so little time!!


          1. dotty | | #7

            Color is my hang up too. I bought something on special a while back that was labeled as periwinkle. It was most definitely blue! They wouldn't take it back since it was a closeout. It was probably a closeout because of the mislabeling. Its actually not a bad blue, but it sits in my stash because I get annoyed when I see it. I guess its time to move on. Funny how a stash takes on a life of its own.

          2. bonkers | | #10

            Dotty, I have plenty of these in my stash that I picked out myself in the store!! Can`t blame that on the supplier. They reside there utill I find a quilt that they are just the right shade to match. I call these my "legecy" to my survivors!! Bonkers

          3. WandaJ | | #8

            Yes, I do have a few fabric sites that I really like. MY preference for the sites are based on quality of fabric purchased, delivery time, price, and courtesy of staff either on-line or by phone: Michael's Fabrics, Emma One Sock, Ginny's Fine Fabrics, Fabric Mart Fabrics, and Fashion Fabric Club. I used to order from time-to-time from Fabrics. com, but I haven't lately as I do not like the layout of their site. I hope these listed sites help, and please know that in no way do I get a re-imbursement of any sort for recommending them, nor am I in any way affiliated with the sites or their owners.

          4. bonkers | | #9

            Wanda, I am going to look at all of these tonite when my husband is watching the evefning news!! Thanks

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