Warp and Weft Meaning in Fabric

Warp and weft are the technical names of the yarns in a fabric. Woven fabrics are made of two sets of yarns - warp yarns and weft yarns. The yarn lies parallel to the fabric edge (selvage) is called the warp and the yarn lies perpendicular to the fabric edges is called weft yarns. During fabric formation, first warp yarns are drawn from a warper beam and the loom shed is formed. The weft yarns are interlaced by passing it through warp yarns shed from one edge to another one by one.

Warp and weft are the technical names of the yarn how it is used in fabric formation. The same yarn can be used as warp and weft (filling) for making the fabric. When the warp yarn is used as a filling, it will be called as weft yarn.

Warp and weft yarns are prepared separately for fabric manufacturing. Normally, stronger yarns are used in fabric compared to the weft yarns. If you take a fabric specimen, the fabric is stronger in length-wise compared to width-wise. In a fabric, normally different count of warp yarns and weft yarn is used.

When you first learn to weave of textiles you come to know many new textile terms. Warp and weft are such two terms that you must know the definition of warp yarns and weft yarns. The fabric properties depend on the yarn quality requirements. If you are working in garment manufacturing, you also need to know about the warp and weft yarn. The fabric fall, grainline, pattern cutting direction are followed based on the warp and weft direction. You may need to identify warp and weft yarns in a woven fabric.

Warp and Weft in image

See the following examples for warp and weft yarns and direction of warp and weft yarns in a woven fabric and readymade garment.

#1. Weft direction in a fabric roll

Weft yarn direction

#2. Warp and Weft yarn direction in a woven shirt
Warp and weft direction
Warp and weft yarn direction in a woven shirt

#3. Warp and weft direction in a handloom shed (when the fabric is under weaving process)

Warp and weft yarns in a loom shed 

Also read: Warp Vs Weft Yarns in Fabrics

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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