What is Selvedge in Fabrics?

Selvedge is the edges of both sides of the fabric along the fabric length. While you will be handling fabrics in the garment and textile industry, the selvedge is a common technical term you should know.

A selvage (US English) or selvedge (British English) is a self-finished edge of the fabric (Wikipedia definition).

Fabric selvedge

In a woven fabric roll, selvedges are clearly visible. Normally selvedges are thicker and stronger than the other part of the fabric. In the selvedge warp yarns are placed closer and construction is more dense compared the other part of the fabric. Purpose of selvedge is to secure the fabric from fraying out the warp yarns from fabric. In the above image and the following image selvedge is shown by arrow mark at the self-finished edges.  

Following the selvedges, garment makers identify the fabric grains, or warp direction. While in a cut pieces where selvedges are taken out from the fabric, it is quite difficult to identify the warp direction. In such case you may need to follow guides to identify warp and weft in the woven fabric.

Fabric selvedge

Different types of fabric selvedges

Based on the design fabric selvedges are categories as the followings
  1. Plain selvedges
  2. Tape selvedges
  3. Split selvedges
  4. Fused selvedges
  5. Leno selvedges
  6. Tucked-in selvedges

Prasanta Sarkar

Prasanta Sarkar is a textile engineer and a postgraduate in fashion technology from NIFT, New Delhi, India. He has authored 6 books in the field of garment manufacturing technology, garment business setup, and industrial engineering. He loves writing how-to guide articles in the fashion industry niche. He has been working in the apparel manufacturing industry since 2006. He has visited garment factories in many countries and implemented process improvement projects in numerous garment units in different continents including Asia, Europe, and South Africa. He is the founder and editor of the Online Clothing Study Blog.

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