Gabardine is characterized by either steep or sometimes regular twill, tightly woven, with fine, distinct diagonal ribs on the surface and a smooth back. Wools are right-hand twill, cotton may be left-hand. The warp generally has twice as many threads per inch as the weft. Made of worsted, cotton, manufactured fibers, blends, and (rarely) silk.
Because gabardine is tightly woven (particularly in a steep twill weave) the fabric is hard-wearing and rain resistant. Its name derives from the Medieval Spanish word gabardina which means protection from the elements. The name was originally used for a cloak worn in the Middle Ages.
Uses: Suits, coats, rainwear, slacks, skirts, uniforms, dresses, sportswear, shirts, hats
|Worsted wool gabardine|
©Vintage Fashion Guild - Text by Margaret Wilds/denisebrain, photos by Hoyt Carter