By Harriet Hargrave
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Extra resources for From Fiber to Fabric: The Essential Guide to Quiltmaking Textiles
Basic Finishes Finishes are classified in various ways. They are applied by mechanical or chemical process, and each finish is classified as permanent, durable, semi-durable, or temporary. Permanent finishes involve a chemical change in the fiber structure that will not change or alter throughout the life of the fabric. Durable finishes usually last the life of the article, but will lose their effectiveness slightly after each cleaning. Semi-durable finishes last for several cleanings, and temporary finishes are removed the first time they are laundered.
However, they may crock if improperly applied. Indigo denim is an example of a vat-dyed textile. T e x t i l e D y e i n g 35 Other Colorants Pigments are completely different substances for coloring textiles. Pigments, unlike dyes, are coloring agents which are insoluble in water, and do not unite or combine in any way with the textile fiber. Pigment particles are microscopic-sized, colored chips which are held on the surface of a fiber by binding agents. The color is mixed with a binder and applied as a binder/pigment mixture.
Weather conditions, the season of the year, your relative height above sea level, and the distance you are from the equator will all affect sunlight intensity. Smoggy environments tend to filter and diffuse the light intensity more than clean, clear air. The proximity to artificial light sources also affects lightfastness. In general, the intensity of sunlight causes more serious lightfast damage than artificial light sources. If you plan to make a wall quilt for a wall exposed to bright light, or a quilt for a bed in a room where light comes in from a window, it is advisable to first test your chosen fabrics for lightfastness.