Chenille is a fancy yarn that can be characterised by a short, velvety pile that sticks out perpendicularly from the yarns core. It was formally made from silk and/or wool but is not more commonly manufactured with cotton and viscose. Chenille yarn was first produced in the 17th Century in France. The term ‘Chenille’ can also be used to describe Chenille fabric; a fabric made from Chenille yarns in the weft and another fibre as the warp. This fabric is generally used for jumpers, dresses, outer wear and home furnishings. The chenille yarn is used for embroidery and trimming. The term Chenille simply comes from the French word for ‘Caterpillar’ which is what the yarn resembles.

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Written by Kelly Mitchell

Kelly Mitchell, extremely competent and reliable, she is currently in her third year at the University of Lincoln UK, studying Fashion. Kelly is responsible for the Fabrics, Fibers and Leathers sections of our Dictionary

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