What is Linen?
Humankind has long been using woven fabrics for clothing and one of the oldest known in history is the linen. Linen is a woven fabric from flax plant, which was regarded as a material for the early royalties. Typically, the material used for the tailoring of a king’s robe is the purple linen. Weaving of linen can be dated back thousands of years ago. In fact, the Bible mentioned linen coverings several times as fabric used in covering temples and tabernacles.
Linen is a fine fabric and is quite pricey to manufacture. The quality of woven linen will directly depend on the quality of the flax plant used. The flax plant is considered as unpredictable plant in terms of growing so quality may vary. Extracting the fibers from the flax plant is delicate. The fibers from the plant stalk are hand picked. Moreover, the process of pulling out the fiber from the plant is a tiresome and extensive process.
The person performing the separation of flax fiber must be careful to perform the task in the approved manner. This is the reason why weaving the linen is quite costly. On the other hand, cheaper linens, which are considered low quality fiber is also, manufactured using cotton machines. Presently, Western Europe is known to grow the finest fabric flax.
To determine if linen is of good quality, it must bear the characteristics of being soft and free of tiny knots known as slubs. Low quality fabrics are often characterized by the appearance of slubs. High quality linen is resistant to moth and dirt. Moreover, it can quickly take up and lose water. Many people choose to wear clothes made from high quality linen due to its ability to absorb perspiration coming out of the skin. However, it is said that the sweat may damage the linen fabric.
As mentioned earlier, the reason why linen is costly is due to its pricey process for both manufacturing and weaving. The good thing about linen is that it is without difficulty absorbs dye. This is the reason why linen is manufactured in various colors.
Linen has been highly popular in regions where the climate is hot. It is the reason why Egypt made use of linen thousands of years ago. People in most tropical countries also pick clothes made from linen. Linen is known to be light and highly appropriate for summer and spring wear. People will feel and stay fresh even on the hottest days. Modern day living also fits the use of linen fabric since it can be machine-washed.
Although linen is a comfortable clothing to wear, it is still not perfect. The downside of linen fiber is its inclination to wrinkle. This is especially evident on linen slacks. When a person wearing linen slacks sits down, the creases will immediately appear on the slacks. Moreover, linen fabric is difficult to iron. A very hot iron is necessary to press and remove wrinkles from the fabric. A steam iron is often used to remove linen wrinkles. Alternatively, spraying water on the fabric before ironing will help remove the wrinkles on the fabric.