Style Terms

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The complete glossary for style and fashion terminology.

Silk

What does Silk mean?

A by-product of the silkworm when spinning its cocoon, silk are the threads, yarns, and fabrics made from the filament.

Style Terms explains Silk

There are two main types of silk: wild and cultivated. Cultivated silk comes from the Bombyx mori caterpillar and is fine, lustrous, and strong. Wild silk, also called raw silk, tussah, or honan, comes from wild varieties of silkworm. This type of silk is more irregular in appearance, coarser, and not as lustrous as cultivated silk.

Silk originated in China and has been produced for thousands of years, dating back to as early as 3500 BC. It is an expensive fabric, and is valued for its strength, softness, insulating properties, luster, and drape.