Textile Glossary

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MacraméKnotted threadwork.
Madras checkA colour-woven cotton fabric designed in colourful checks and usually associated with typical cotton checks from Madras in India.
Mako cottonVery fine cotton spun from extra long staple Egyptian fibre.
MaltintéA yarn that is dyed unevenly to achieve an artificial aged effect.
Man-made fibre"A fibre which is manufactured rather than occurring naturally. Man-made fibres can be further divided into cellulosic or artificial fibres, which are made from naturally occurring polymers such as wood pulp; and synthetic fibres, which are made from chem
Man-made fibresFibres which are manufactured and which do not occur in nature. The term man-made fibres is also used to refer to man-made filament yarns.
Man-made filamentsFilaments which are manufactured and which do not occur in nature.
Maquiladoras"Plants, common in Mexico and other Latin American countries, which process and assemble components or part-assembled goods made in the USA or another country and return the finished products to the USA or elsewhere for final sale. Usually, maquiladoras a
MaquilasSee maquiladoras.
Marl yarn"A yarn, usually woollen-spun, consisting of two or more single ends of different colours twisted together. (See also Grandrelle.)"
MarocainA crêpe fabric with a weft-ways rib.
Mass colorationA method of colouring man-made fibres by incorporating a dye or colorant in the spinning solution or melt before extrusion into filaments. Also known as dope-dyeing.
MatelasséA double cloth with a quilted appearance.
MatrixSee Composite.
Mcd/m2Millicandela per m2. The candela is the SI (Systéme International) unit for luminous intensity.
Mechanical bonding"Part of a production route for making nonwovens; the web is cohered by using inter-fibre friction caused by physical entanglement. The entanglement can be caused by needles, high pressure water jets (hydroentanglement) or air jets."
MEG"Monoethylene glycol, a chemical intermediate used in the manufacture of polyester."
MélangeA yarn produced from coloured printed tops or slivers. It is indistinguishable from a mixture yarn in that each fibre carries more than one colour.
Melton"A heavyweight, dense, compacted, and tightly woven wool or wool blend fabric used mainly for coats."
Melt flow indexAn indication of the viscosity of molten polymer. The index serves to indicate the flow characteristics of a melt under given temperature and pressure conditions.
Melt spinningThe conversion of molten polymer into filaments by extrusion through a spinneret and subsequent cooling of the extrudate.
Meltblow"Part of a production route for making nonwovens; extruded synthetic filaments are sucked by high pressure air jets from the die to form random length, very fine fibres which are deposited on to a belt."
Melt-spinning (nonwovens)"A process in which the fibre-forming substance is melted and extruded into a gas or liquid, where it cools and solidifies. To form a nonwoven, many fibres are created simultaneously and laid down as a web."
Mercerisation"A treatment of yarns or fabrics with caustic alkali, in which fibres are swollen and stretched to increase lustre in the finished product."
Merino wool"Wool from the Merino sheep, with a mean fibre diameter generally of 24 microns or less."
Mesh"A type of fabric characterized by its net-like open appearance, and the spaces between the yarns. Mesh is available in a variety of constructions including wovens, knits, laces, or crocheted fabrics."
Metallo-plasticA yarn made from a synthetic or plastic material with a metallic appearance.
Metallic Fiber"An inorganic fiber made from minerals and metals, blended and extruded to form fibers. The fiber is formed from a flat ribbon of metal, coated with a protective layer of plastic, which reduces tarnishing. Metal used in apparel fabric is purely decorative
MFA"Multi-Fibre Arrangement-a special protocol agreed by members of Gatt as derogation from normal Gatt rules. The MFA, which ran from 1974 to 1994, permitted members to establish quotas restricting textile and clothing trade which applied to specific supply
MFNMost Favoured Nation a basic principle of GATT which requires countries to treat imports from one Gatt member no less favourably than imports from another GATT member.
MicrofibreA fibre or filament with a linear density approximately below 1 decitex. Some commercial fibres or filaments as coarse as 1.3 decitex are classified as microfibres by their producers (see also microfilament).
MicrofilamentA continuous filament with a linear density approximately below 1 decitex. Some commercial filaments as coarse as 1.3 decitex are classified as microfilaments by their producers (see also microfibre).
Micron (micrometre)One millionth of a metre.
Micronaire value"A measurement of cotton fibre quality. The micronaire value is a function of fibre fineness and maturity low values indicate fine and/or immature fibres, whereas high values indicate coarse and/or mature fibres. The micronaire value is determined in prac
MicroyarnA yarn consisting of several microfilaments.
MillingA process in which wool and other animal fibre fabrics are compacted by wetting them and putting them through a rotary milling machine.
Mock leno"A woven structure which imitates the appearance of leno weaves, ie it has an open structure."
ModalA type of cellulosic fibre having improved strength and modulus when wet.
ModulusA measure of the ability of a fibre to resist extension. Normally measured as the ratio of the stress (or load) applied on a yarn or filament to the elongation (strain) resulting from the application of that stress.
MohairThe hair of the angora goat.
MoiréA rippled effect created by applying heat and heavy pressure by means of rollers on a ribbed or corded fabric.
Moisture management (in textiles and garments)"The process by which moisture is moved away from the skin and dispersed through a fabric to its outer surface. From here, moisture can evaporate, leaving both the skin and garment dry."
Moisture regain"The percentage of moisture in a textile material brought into equilibrium with a standard atmosphere after partial drying, calculated as a percentage of the moisture-free weight."
Moisture vapour transmission (MVT)"The passage of water vapour, usually perspiration, through a fabric or membrane."
Moisture vapour transmission rate (MVTR)The speed at which a given volume of water vapour passes through a fabric.
Moleskin"A thick cotton fabric, originally uncut corduroy having a very high weft sett, which is piece-dyed and given a smooth raised finish to simulate the fur of a mole."
Monk's Cloth"A heavy weight cotton fabric utilizing the basket weave variation of the plain weave. Used for draperies and slip covers, monk's cloth is an example of 4 x 4 basket weave. It has poor dimensional stability and tends to snag."
Monoethylene glycolA chemical intermediate used in the manufacture of polyester.
Monoethylene glycol (MEG)A chemical intermediate used in the manufacture of polyester.
Monofilament yarnA yarn consisting of a single filament.
Mordant"A substance, usually a metallic compound, applied to a substrate to form a complex with a dye, which is retained by the substrate more firmly than the dye itself."
Mould (composites)A shaped former used to fabricate an article from a liquid or semi-solid under the effect of heat or pressure. Also used to describe the process of making the article in a mould.
MoulinéA type of two-colour twist yarn which gives a mottled effect in fabric.
Mousseline"a general term for very fine, semi-opaque fabrics-finer than muslins-made of silk, wool or cotton."
Mpa (Megapascal)"The pressure produced by a force of 1 Newton applied, uniformly distributed, over an area of 1 mm2."
MSWMunicipal solid waste.
Mullen burstThe measured hydraulic bursting strength of a textile.
Multifilament yarnA yarn made up of more than one filament.
Muslin"An inexpensive, medium weight, plain weave, low count (less than 160 threads per square inch) cotton sheeting fabric. In its unfinished form, it is commonly used in fashion design to make trial garments for preliminary fit."