Fabric Knowledge Series: 5 things you should know about Silk

Silk is one of nature’s most luxurious fibers and has always been a symbol of class and elegance. Its natural fibers are known for their luster, shine, strength, and durability. Due to its soft texture and sophisticated appearance, it is one of the most popular fabrics in the high-end and couture fashion industry.

If you didn’t know, silk fabric comes from China and was used in a child’s tomb to wrap the body. Based on its origins, China dominated the silk industry for many years and reserved this fabric type for the Emperor. Soon, The Silk Road came to light, which connected industries from the East to the West. This was a popular trading route named for the fabric. Amazingly, the term still maintains its name today in that region of  the world.

There are multiple types of silks such as Spider Silk, Tasar Silk and Indian Muga Silk. However, the most common type of silk is Mulberry Silk. This silk comes from silk worms produced from the Bombyx Mori Moth that are fed an exclusive diet of mulberry leaves. This silk filament is being extracted by brushing its cocoon and then woven or knitted into a fabric or spun into a yarn. 

If you’d like to find out more about Silk and its characteristics, let’s take a look at 5 different characteristics of silk below. 

5 Characteristics of Silk

Strength and Durability 

Silk is known as one of the strongest natural fibers. Although it may be thin, and can diminish upon getting wet, the fabric is often blended with other fiber such as cotton, for added strength which can prevent ripping and tearing. 

Thermal Regulation

Silk is a fabric that is good at maintaining your body temperature. This means at times you are feeling warm, the fabric can help you feel cool and vice versa. This makes the fabric both thin and a good insulator.

Gentle On The Skin

Silk is hypoallergenic. This means that those who suffer from allergies and skin conditions will find this fabric comfortable on their skin as opposed to using other fabrics such as cotton and linen. In silk, there are sericin residues which are natural repellent that keeps bacteria, dust mites and moulds out and impossible to breed. With that, masks and hair ties are now commonly made out of mulberry silk to not irritate the skin and hair and help your sensitive skin retain its natural moisture.  

Breathable Fabric

Silk is considered a breathable fabric as it is about one-tenth the size of a human hair. This makes it lightweight which reduces the risk of overheating in sunny Singapore. This is possible as the fabric is able to absorb up to 30% of its weight in moisture without feeling damp. It truly is the ideal fabric for people living in Singapore. 

Drying Speed

With Phase 3 being introduced in late December 2020, there’s definitely going to be a pile of laundry at the end of every week as we go back to work. Luckily, silk is a fast drying fabric which makes it practical when managing your laundry. 

After reading on the characteristics, you’re definitely sold on the benefits and characteristics of silk. As  you’re on your way to pick up a ton of silk masks, scrunchies, pyjamas and skirts, do remember to take into consideration that silk is a delicate fabric and requires a little more attention and time when being cleaned. Hence, below are cleaning tips for your silk!

  1. Dry Cleaning

When it comes to cleaning your silk, dry cleaning is generally the preferred method. Dry cleaning your silk can extend the life of your silk and help keep the shape of the garment, especially if there are stains involved. Rubbing detergent onto your silk garment can cause discoloration and for the garment to pull and stretch. 

  1. Hand Washing

However, if you want to find a way to care for your silk at home, always remember to do colours separately and read the care label guide before cleaning your silk. A silk-specific detergent or mild soap is highly recommended. Remember to never rub on stains. To dry the fabric, simply roll it in a dry towel and lay flat to dry.

  1. Goodbye Wrinkles and Creases 

Most wrinkles and creases on silk can be removed by using a steamer. However, if you do not own a steamer, you may flip your garment  inside out and set the iron to low heat before ironing it. However, if you still fear you might burn your silk garment, you can always put a cloth between the silk and the iron. 

  1. Storing Your Silk

The best way to store your silk is by hanging it in a cool dry place. However, if you’re storing your silk for a long period of time, you can put it in a breathable non-plastic storage bag with a natural moth repellent to avoid attracting moths. 

Silk is an expensive fabric and requires a little extra care when cleaning and storing it. Hence, at Presto Drycleaners, we offer tips and  laundry cleaning services in Singapore for your silk garments to avoid unnecessary risks to damaging your valuable pieces. You may call us at +65 6354 3277, to book a pick up or visit our website to know the nearest laundry and drycleaning outlet near you. 

We hope you found this article helpful. Let us know what other fabric types you’d like tips on in the comments section below.