Flannel is a soft woven fabric, of various fineness. Flannel was originally made from carded wool or worsted yarn, but is now often made from either wool, cotton, or synthetic fiber.
Flannel may be brushed to create extra softness or remain unbrushed. Brushing is a mechanical process wherein a fine metal brush rubs the fabric to raise fine fibres from the loosely spun yarns to form a nap on one or both sides. If the flannel is not napped, it gains its softness through the loosely spun yarn in its woven form.
Types of Flannel Fabric
Baby flannel is a lightweight fabric used for childrenswear.
Cotton flannel or Canton flannel is a cotton fabric napped on one side or two sides.
Ceylon flannel was a name for a wool and cotton mixture.
Diaper flannel is a stout cotton fabric napped on both sides, and used for making cloth diapers.
Uses of Flannel
Flannel is commonly used to make tartan clothing, blankets, bed sheets, and sleepwear. The term “flannel shirt” is often used casually to mean any shirt with a plaid or tartan pattern.