You’ve seen this decorative, self-patterned fabric everywhere - fashion designers love it, and it’s having a real moment with suiting right now.
Here are five things to know about brocade.
What can brocade fabric be used for? Dresses. Trousers. Coats and Suits (ala Elie Saab and Dolce and Gabbana). Evening jackets. Brocade can be used for a million different things (and we’ve only listed clothes here – don’t forget how great brocade can look in décor). Back in the day, brocade was a stiff, starchy fabric because its original use was for upholstery. However, at some point someone clocked its potential for clothing design and it evolved into the fashion fabric we see today. Modern brocades tend to have a softer handle than the older versions, which makes it more versatile than ever. One of our clients just made an incredible line of men’s evening jackets with a few of our brocades, and they look amazing.
(An embellished brocade for Dolce & Gabbana Fall '18)
What is brocade fabric made of? Brocade is made up of a number of material blends. Traditionally, the fabric was made with silk, but nowadays it’s made up using a whole lot of different fabric mixes, like silk and cotton, or even polyester. The wonders of technology.
(A brocade gown owned by Queen Victoria)
(Miranda Kerr in a Louis Vuitton metallic brocade dress)
How is brocade fabric made? Brocade fabric is created using the technique of ‘jacquarding’. Jacquarding is the process in which a background weave (eg silk) is imprinted with a tightly woven design on top of it, resulting in the embossed or embroidered look of a brocade.
How do you clean brocade fabric? Do. Not. Use. Water. to clean your brocade. It’s a dry clean only fabric.
And what’s the difference between brocade and cloqué? One of the main differences between brocade and cloqué is that brocade is stiffer and has more body. If you want to make, say, a dress or a blazer with a really strong hold and structure, go with brocade.
Joel & Son Fabrics holds the largest, most diverse selection of brocade fabrics. Check in regularly because we get new deliveries all the time. Browse our range online and get in touch if you can't find what you're looking for, as we have lots more in our London store.