What you may call fabric or cloth is actually a synonym for the infamous textiles. A textile is basically a group of fabric like yarn or thread. Although the true origin of the textile making industry is unknown, textile-like products were being made back in the prehistoric times. Even though the textile making world has progressed since then, the overall idea is still the same. One of the oldest true textile products can be traced back to the Incas and was called a quipus, which are basically a series of knots on a string that was used for additions and accounting practices.
You can use the textile trade for a wide variety of uses. Some of the most common uses are for making baskets, bags, and of course, clothing. For home uses you can find textile products in towels, table covers, carpeting, window shades and valences, and even table cloths and covers. Getting your children involved in using the textile process can also be done by making toys, quilts, and collages. Doing this can also be used as a great way to get the family together for an activity. Some other random items that use the textile method are tents, rags, backpacks, sails and parachutes, and even fiberglass.
The textile itself can come from many different sources, and each source is usually used for specific products and projects. Animal textile is a popular material and is typically made from fur or hair from an animal. This can also include wool, silk, alpaca, angora, and cashmere. A plant textile, like hemp or grass, is great for making ropes. Cotton, bamboo, straw, and seaweed are also materials that fall into the plant textile making field. A mineral textile is used more for things we wouldn't typically see on a daily basis. Materials like asbestos, metal fiber and fiber glass fall into this category and can be used for insulating, construction, and even vinyl sheets. The last but most common branch of textile products is the synthetic textile. These materials are what your clothing is made out of. This can include spandex, polyester, nylon, and even milk proteins for some synthetic fabric.
Weaving, knitting and crocheting are just a few of the ways you can incorporate textile making into your home or craft hobby. For thousands of years this method has been a great way to produce some of the most depended on products.