Fibers from plants or animal sources
The soft, white, downy fiber (boll) attached to the seed of a cotton plant. Most widely used of all natural fibers. Grown in the southern U.S. and other warm climates.
Strong and durable
Cool to wear
Shrinks in hot water
–Tumble dry at moderate temperatures
–Press with warm to hot iron
The fiber that forms the coat (fleece) of sheep.
Natural insulator; warmest of all natural fibers
Soft and resilient
Naturally flame retardant
Absorbs moisture more slowly than cotton
Shrinks if machine washed or dried unless chemically treated
Affected by moths
The fiber that comes from the stem of a flax plant.
–Durable and strong
–Lustrous and smooth
–Comfortable and cool to wear
–Creases difficult to remove
–Can be expensive
–Hand wash or dry clean (according to garment label)
–Iron while damp
The fine, lustrous fiber that comes from a cocoon spun by a silkworm.
–Luxurious appearance and feel
–Strongest of all natural fibers
–Easily spots if fabric becomes wet
–Weakens with exposure to sun and perspiration
–Dry clean or hand wash (according to garment directions) –Press on wrong side with warm iron
–Wedding gowns –Lingerie –Men’s ties