Hand and drape are two aesthetic fabric properties that have received much attention in textile testing and evaluation. Unfortunately, these properties are amongst the hardest to measure and a few standard methods have been developed for them. In this paper, a novel approach called PhabrOmeter is used to quantify fabric hands objectively for a set of light weight cotton summer knitted fabrics. Results show that PhabrOmeter provides a simple, direct and inexpensive way to quantify fabric hand objectively in terms of draping, stiffness, softness and smoothness.


1. INTRODUCTION


Hand and drape are two aesthetic fabric properties that have received much attention in textile testing and evaluation. Fabric hand is an individual's response to touch when fabrics are held in the hand. A number of hand descriptors have been used to describe this response: smooth, rough, stiff, soft and others. Despite their importance, these properties are among the hardest to measure, and few standard methods have been developed for determining them. Traditionally, producers, retailers and consumers have evaluated these properties subjectively and by practical experiences [1]. For example, wool is often described as scratchy or rough. The hand of silk has been characterized as "dry" and raw silk has a scroop or rustles when it moves or is compressed.


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This article was originally presented at the Autex 2011 Conference, June, 2011.


About the Authors:


Jimmy K.C. Lam and Inti Wong are associated with the Institute of Textiles & Clothing, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong