Jacquard is an expensive, beautiful and quite unique type of fabric. It has fascinating history that starts in 19th Century and interesting possibilities in the future. So, what is jacquard? It is a type of cloth featuring pattern woven into the warp rather than printed on the surface. That means it is more expensive that some other types of fabrics where designs are printed using ink. Jacquard is mostly woven but there are also knitted options. There are also double-sided jacquard fabrics, which allow to use both sides of the fabric. It is a great idea for double-sided clothes or saving the other side for contrast details like cuffs, pockets etc. Moreover, jacquard comes both in tone-on-tone and contrast design, and a choice of patters is unlimited from stripes, floral patterns.

                    Jacquard was created by a French weaver Joseph-Marie Jacquard who invented this technology in 1804. Complex patterns were woven directly into the fabric. Although Jacquard has its name from the inventor of the loom, some credit should also be given to earlier inventors who used a variety of machines that made the process of weaving complex patterns into fabric easier. The invention of jacquard loom mean that priced of jacquard reduced and it was no longer a fabric for the elite. Before the invention of the jacquard loom, such patterns were made by hand and involved a lot of time and labor.

                    Since jacquard is a type of weave rather than fabric it means it be made of any fibers, care instructions depend a lot on the fabric the clothing is made of. Some of jacquards are ok with washing, while others prefer dry-cleaning. If jacquard is rich with metallic yarn, sequins or beadwork, dry-cleaning is the best option. Sturdy jacquard can be machine washed at 30 degrees. For the details always refer to the label. Do not wring jacquard but let it dry on a hanger or flat. If you choose to press jacquard, it is generally recommended to do it on the wrong side not to damage the pattern.

                    The important advantage is that jacquard can consist of a mix of elastic fibers such as spandex or lycra mixed with less elastic fibers such as cotton. More stretchy fabrics can be used for fitted styles. Jessica Alba wore a jacquard pegged dress designed by Mary Katrantzou at the Helping Hand of Los Angeles Mother's Day. Heavier fabric is perfect for a dress with a fitted bodice that comes in at the waist and then flares out to a ball-like gown. Jacquard fabrics made of lightweight materials are often used for summer apparel. House designers incorporate their well-known patterns into the fabric creating jacquard. Balmain celebrated 75th anniversary of the house by creating jacquard presenting its famous well-recognized labyrinth pattern wore by Kim Kardashian.  

                    Lastly, what is the future of jacquard? Google has come up with an exciting idea of smart apparel, footwear and other essentials. Can you envision not to have your mobile stuck in your pocket but use the pocket itself to receive a phone call? Perhaps not yet, but beginnings are promising. Jacquard by Google allows to woven technology directly into the fabric. Google promotes its jacket with 'a smart strap'. You can receive a phone call by brushing the strap of your backpack or the cuff of your jacket. It has not taken long from creation of the efficient loom by Joseph-Marie Jacquard to smart software woven directly into the clothes.  

Enoch Naam