Glossary of Terms

In order for our customers to be as informed on our product as our in house design team themselves. To help achieve this goal, below is an extensive glossary of technical terms that will help you understand the advantages of all fabrications, product features and applications used to create Stormtech's best-in class apparel and accessories collection.
  • 1x1 Rib

    1X1 is a knit construction that creates an elastic effect used for necklines and cuffs. The rib stitch creates narrow ribs or vertical columns.

    2x2 Rib

    2x2 is a knit construction that creates an elastic effect used for necklines and cuffs.

    2-Layer Fabric

    Most commonly used fabric configuration for outerwear, 2-Layer fabrics use a face fabric—usually made of nylon or polyester—that is bonded with membrane or coated on the backside. Because of the exposed nature of this combination, the garment is finished with a free hanging mesh or taffeta lining – this is used to protect the coating or membrane from dirt and oil contamination.

    3-Layer Fabric

    A breathable membrane sandwiched by using a bonding technique between an outer layer face fabric—usually made of nylon or polyester—and a very lightweight backing of tricot or jersey knit to protect the membrane from dirt and oil contamination.

    2-Way Zipper

    A zipper with two zipper pulls so the garment can be unzipped from either direction.

    3-in-1 Jacket

    A 3-in-1 System Jacket is constructed from a waterproof outer shell and a softshell, fleece or insulated mid-layer. The Mid-layer can be zippered into the outer shell layer for extra warmth.

    4-Way Stretch

    A fabric that stretches both on the crosswise and lengthwise grains of the fabric. Also called mechanical stretch, except mechanical stretch doesn't use spandex or other stretch yarns.

  • Abrasion Resistance

    The degree by which a fabric is able to withstand loss of appearance through surface wear, rubbing, chafing, and other frictional actions.


    The ability of a fabric to take in moisture. Absorbency is a very important property, which effects many other characteristics such as skin comfort, static build-up, shrinkage, stain removal, water repellency, and wrinkle recovery.

    Air Permeability

    Air permeability measures how easily air is passed through fabric. It indicates the breathability of weather-resistant and waterproof fabrics and is an important factor in the performance of outdoor apparel.


    Anti-Bacterial (Anti-Microbial): A fabric that has been chemically treated or a fiber that is created by incorporating the anti-bacterial chemical agent into the fiber formula, making the finished fiber or fabric resistant to, or inhibiting the growth of micro-organisms.

    Anti-Pill Finish

    A finish applied to fleece which involves shearing the surface so that the fabric is less likely to pill. See Pilling.

    Anti-Snag Finish

    A treatment applied to fabric primarily to improve the resistance of fabric to snagging. See Snagging.


    A manufactured fiber derived from polyacrylonitrile. Its major properties include a soft, wool-like hand, machine washable and dryable, excellent colour retention. Solution-dyed versions have excellent resistance to sunlight and chlorine degradation.


    A design detail usually in the shoulders, elbows or knees where limbs bend to increase mobility for greater ease of movement.

    Back Yoke

    A piece of fabric that connects the back of a garment to the shoulders. This allows the garment to lay flat and drape nicely.

    Base Layer

    Worn next to the skin, a base layer wicks sweat and keeps you warm/cool and dry.


    The technique of permanently joining together two fabrics - usually a face fabric and a lining fabric of tricot - into one package. Special adhesives, binders, or thin slices of foam may be used as the marrying agent. Fabrics can also be bonded to ultra-thin slices of foam or other materials on the cutting tables, and make possible easier handling of fragile cloths such as delicate laces, sheer materials, or lightweight knits.


    It is ability of a fabric to allow moisture vapor to be transmitted through the material. The rating is expressed in a gram measurement of how much vapor a square meter of fabric will allow to pass in a 24-hours period; the higher the number, the more breathable the garment.


    A finishing process for knit or woven fabrics in which brushes or other abrading devices are used to raise a nap on fabrics or create a novelty surface texture.

    Button-Down Collar

    Found on many shirt, where the collar's wings can be fastened down by buttons, minimizing the spread between the wings.

  • Chambray

    A plain woven fabric that can be made from cotton, silk, or manufactured fibers, but is most commonly cotton. It incorporates a coloured warp (often blue) and white filling yarns.

    Chin Saver

    A fold of soft fabric around the end of the zipper that helps prevent abrasion.

    Climate Range System

    A system developed by Stormtech, taking several factors into consideration such as activity level, wind chill, sun exposure etc. A great tool to help a customer select the appropriate garment.

    Collar Stand

    The stand of a collar is a separate panel between the actual collar and the neckline.


    A term used in the dyeing of textile materials that characterizes a material’s colour resistance to fading.


    A cuff in which two identical pieces of fabric are joined by seam along the edge, then turned and sometimes topstitched near the folded edges.


    A Debossed pattern is depressed against the background, while an embossed pattern is raised from the surface.


    A decorative weave, characterized by small figures, usually geometric, that are woven into the fabric structure. Standard dobby fabrics are usually flat and relatively fine or sheer.

    Double-Needle Stitching

    A stitch finish that uses two needles to create parallel rows of stitching.

    Drop Back

    A longer back than front for the purpose of keeping the shirt tucked in. Also referred to as Extended Tail.


    Durable water repellent.

  • Easy-care

    An extremely loose term implying that a limited amount of ironing will be necessary after the item is washed. Easy care fabrics seem to be most successful when they are made of at least 65’% polyester or have had a special finish applied to them.


    An embellishment of a fabric or garment in which coloured threads are sewn on to the fabric to create a design. Some of the most common embroidery stitches are beading, buttonhole stitch, chain stitch, chevron stitch, satin stitch, stem stitch, back stitch, and straight stitch.

    Embroidery Access

    An access or opening, usually a zipper or hook/loop closure, for embroidery purpose.


    An embossed pattern is raised against the background, while a debossed pattern is sunken into the surface of the material.

    Enzyme Washed

    A laundering process in which a catalytic substance is added to create a chemical change in the fabric resulting in a very soft finish, smoother appearing surface and reduced shrinkage.


    Design elements incorporated into a garment to improve the design by enhancing the wearer's comfort, performance or health.


    This is a process that refers to all the finishing steps after dyeing that gives final aesthetic look, feel, and behavior of a fabric. Finishing can be mechanical (as in calendering) or chemical, or both. Special treatments are applied to fabrics during finishing to make them perform better, shrink less, resist flares, repel water, etc.

    Flatlock Stitching

    A flatlock stitching is commonly used to attach fabrics together, side-by-side in one layer rather than layered with a thick seam. Flat locked seams can be decorative as well as functional.


    H2X-DRY moisture management fabric provides optimal moisture wicking capabilities to provide a more comfortable wear.


    The ultimate fabric in waterproof/breathable technology. Delivers a minimum waterproof and breathable rating of 5,000mm/5,000g/m2/24h.

    Hand Feel

    The way the fabric feels when it is touched. Terms like softness, crispness, dryness, and silkiness are all terms that describe the hand of the fabric. A good hand refers to shape retention without stiffness.

    Hard Shell

    A high-impact, abrasion-resistant outer fabric, which provides protection from the environment.

    HD Outer Shell

    A heavy-duty, highly-durable, taslon polyester fabric constructed to withstand the most rigorous and extreme applications and industries. A high-impact, abrasion-resistant outer fabric, which provides protection from the environment.

    Heat Transfer

    A form of printing in which elaborate colours and designs are printed onto a special type of paper. The paper is placed over the fabric and the designs and colours are transferred to the fabric through the application of heat.


    It also called broken twill weave describes a distinctive V-shaped weaving pattern usually found in twill fabric. It is distinguished from a plain chevron by the break at reversal, which makes it resemble a broken zigzag.

  • Insulated Jacket

    A jacket designed to protect from the loss of warmth or the penetration of cold. The common use insulators are down, fleece or synthetic fibers.


    Fabrics used to support, reinforce and give shape to fashion fabrics in sewn products.


    An insulation, padding, or stiffening fabric, either sewn to the wrong side of the lining or the inner side of the outer shell fabric for extra weight and warmth. The interlining is used primarily to provide warmth in coats, jackets, and outerwear.

    Jersey Knit

    A single-knit, plain-stitched fabric with a face side that is markedly different from the back side.


    Is the process of converting yarn into fabric by inter-looping yarns. In actual construction of the fabric, loops are formed then new loops are drawn through previously formed.

    Laser Etching

    A tone-on-tone decoration technique uses a high energy beam of light to etch into fabrics while moving across a pre-determined course. This technique is ideal for etching extremely precise and intricate details into synthetic fabrics such as fleece.


    - A fabric that is used to cover the inside of a garment to provide a finished look.


    High loft is thick and fluffy, low loft is thin and dense. The higher the loft, the better the insulation characteristic.


    A mix of different colors of yarns knit together to create a heathered effect.

    Mechanical Stretch

    A fabric that stretches naturally on the crosswise and lengthwise grains of the fabric.


    A type of fabric characterized by its net-like open appearance and the spaces between the yarns.


    Tightly woven fabric from a very fine polyester thread, usually with a sueded finish for a soft feel. Inherently water repellent and wind resistant due to its construction.


    A lightweight, double-sided micro-fiber fleece noted for its outstanding low pill velour face, stretch, and chamois-like softness. It is also a common use insulator material.


    Worn over the base layer, this layer traps warm air, breathes and helps maintain body heat.

    Moisture Management

    See Wicking.

  • Nylon

    A manufactured fiber, known for its high strength and excellent resilience, nylon has superior abrasion resistance and high flexibility.

    Outer Layer

    Worn over the base and mid-layers, this layer resists water and wind and has comfortable stretch for mobility.


    A fine, lightweight woven cotton or cotton blend fabric with a 2x1 basket weave variation.

    Per-fluorinated Chemical-Free (PFC-free)

    This material, fabric, or membrane is an organofluorine compound that is free of containing any carbon-fluorine bonds.

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    A tangled ball of fibers that appears on the surface of a fabric as a result of wear or continued friction or rubbing on the surface of the fabric. See Anti-Pill Finish.


    A decorative edging. It gives strength to the area in which it is sewn. Piping is made by covering cord with bias strips of matching or contrasting fabric.

    Pique Knit

    A knitting method that creates a fine textured surface that appears similar to a waffle weave. Commonly used for polo shirts.

    Pit Zips

    Zippers placed in the armpits of a jacket to be used for quick ventilation.


    The part of the shirt or jacket where the garment fastens or buttons together.


    A strong, durable synthetic fabric with high strength and excellent resiliency. Low moisture absorbency allows the fabric to dry quickly.

    Polyurethane Coating (PU Coating)

    Refers to a fabric which has been coated with polyurethane, usually to make it waterproof but sometimes to give a firmer hand.


    A plain-weave, fairly lightweight silk fabric with a slight slub to the yarns.

    Princess Seams

    Short, stitched folds that taper to a point, typically used to shape women's garments.


    Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) is a solid plastic made from vinyl chloride. PVC’s durability and water resistance make it ideal for rain coats, bags and garment.


    A fabric construction in which a layer of polyfill is placed between two layers of fabric, and then held in place by stitching or sealing in a consistent, all-over pattern.

    Raglan Sleeves

    A type of sleeve sewn in with seams slanting outward from neck to underarm. The sleeve continues in one piece to the collar so there are no seams at the shoulder, allowing for ease of movement.


    A manufactured fiber composed of regenerated cellulose, derived from wood pulp, cotton linters or other vegetable matter, with a soft hand. Frequently used for shirts and pants.


    The ability of a fabric to return to its original shape after being stretched. This term is used most often in reference to stretch fabrics. A quality stretch fabric will recover promptly.


    The ability of a fabric to resist such things as wetting and staining by water, stains, soil, etc.

    Reverse Coil Zipper

    Unlike the basic coil zipper, a reverse coil zipper doesn't show its teeth from the front.

    Reverse Placket

    When the buttons on a placket are on the opposite side from a men's garment. Commonly done on women's styles.

    Rib Knit

    A textured knit that has the appearance of vertical lines. It is highly elastic and retains its shape.


    A woven fabric with corded yarns spaced at regular intervals in both the warp and filling, forming squares on the surface of the fabric. Used mainly for outerwear and active wear.

  • Seam Sealing

    A process in which the stitch line of a garment is made leak proof by the application of seam tape or seam-sealing glue.

    Seamless Heat Transfer

    A brand new innovative way of branding a wide range of products with crisp, vibrant, full-color graphics in a heat transfer application. This state of the art technology provides the ability to print and apply highly detailed logos and graphics while being very cost effective.

    Self-Fabric Collar

    A collar that is constructed from the same material as the body of the garment.

    Set-In Sleeves

    Most common style of sleeve, which is sewn into the shoulder seam.

    Sherpa Fleece

    A type of fabric made from polyester. It has two distinct sides; one has a smooth knit side, and the other side has a texture intended to imitate the look and feel of a real sheep's fleece.


    One of the many terms used to describe varying degrees of imperviousness to water. A showerproof fabric will repel water to a limited extent, but is not waterproof. See waterproof.

    Side Vents

    A finished slit or opening at the bottom of side seams, used for fashion detailing, as well as comfort and ease of movement.


    A defect caused by the pulling or plucking of yarns from a fabric surface.

    Soft Shell

    Soft shell fabrics combine the benefits of hard shell fabrics with a breathable, flexible, comfortable fabric. Stretch woven with a DWR treatment.

    Soft Spun Cotton

    Soft spun is an open-end yarn with more twist and a softer exterior to the yarn. The process generally helps lower torque and improve hand feel of the finished fabric.


    A manufactured elastomeric fiber that can be repeatedly stretched over 500% without breaking and will still recover to its original length.

    Stain Repel

    A fabric treatment that helps fabric to resist spills and stains.

    Storm Flap

    A piece of fabric sewn under or over the front zip or snap closure of an outerwear garment to protect against wind and moisture.


    A headwear term referring to a buckram lining used to control the slope of the cap.


    A type of printing that uses sublimation ink, heat and pressure to transfer an image onto substrates/fabric.

    Taped Seams

    A strip of fabric sewn to the seam of a garment to prevent distortion. In outerwear, taped seams aid in waterproofing.


    A durable and water repellent nylon fabric with a slightly shiny surface, used mainly in outerwear garments.

    Thermal Protection

    High efficiency/high loft synthetic alternative to down, designed to maintain its thermal properties while being lightweight and compressible, providing superior resistance in extreme cold conditions.


    Openings at the cuffs so they cover the back of the hands and the palms for warmth and enhanced fit.


    A decorative stitching done on the outside of garment that reinforces seams, pocket edges, or collars.

    Tri-Blend (District)

    A unique, soft blend of poly, cotton and rayon that has heathered look.


    This type of fabric is flat knitted with fine ribs on the face (lengthwise) and ribs on the back (crosswise). Often used as lining material.


    A fabric characterized by micro diagonal ribs producing a soft, smooth finish. Commonly used for casual woven shirts.

    Two Ply

    A thread in which its thickness is made up of two yarns or strands, adding durability and weight.

    Underarm Grommets

    Small holes in the armpit area to allow breathability and air circulation.


    Designed for sun protection, these specialty fabrics are produced for their level of ultraviolet Resistance. A novel weave structure, combined with a high denier count (related to thread count per inch) may assist in producing sun protective properties in fabrics. Also reduces colour fading from the sun’s bleaching effect.

  • V-Neck

    A neckline cut in the shape of the letter V.


    Waterproof fabrics are fabrics that are inherently, or have been treated to become resistant to penetration by water and wetting. The term “Waterproof” refers to conformance to a standard specification and specific condition of a laboratory test method.

    Water Repellent

    Fabric that have been treated to resist wetting and shed water by causing the water to bead on the surface.

    Water Resistant

    Fabric treated to resist water or given a “wax-coating treatment” to make it repellent. A degree by which water is able to penetrate a fabric.


    A strong, narrow fabric made from jute or man-made fibers. It is used for belts and straps that must resist strain.


    There are two basic methods for applying bonding or welded seams. The first method uses an adhesive film, and the application of heat to glue or laminate two substrates together. The second method involves gluing or attaching two fabrics, using ultrasonic technology. The creation and channeling of high frequency vibratory waves cause a rapid buildup of heat in synthetic fabrics to create the bonding.

    Welded Pockets

    The technique by which seams are affixed to one another without stitching.

    Welt Collar/Cuffs

    A single ply fabric with a finished edge that is used for collars and cuffs on sport shirts and short sleeve garments. Also known as flat knit.

    Wind Shirt

    A wind shirt or windbreaker is a thin lightweight jackets or pullover designed to resist wind chill and light rain.

    Wind Resistant

    The ability of a fabric to act against or oppose the penetration of wind or air, without being completely windproof.


    Refers to the ability of a fabric to move moisture (sweat) away from the skin to the outer layer of fabric where it can evaporate more easily thus helping to keep the skin dry. Used in active wear and high performance fabrics.


    Usually associated with fiber or fabric made from the fleece of sheep or lamb.


    Fabric constructed by the interlacing of two or more sets of yarns at right angles to each other.

    Yarn Dyed

    A term used when yarn is dyed prior to the weaving or knitting of the garment.


    A yoke is a shaped pattern piece which forms part of a garment closed to the shoulders. It is usually on the back across the top shoulder area but can also be on the front shoulder to chest area.

    Zipper Garage

    A fold of soft fabric around the upper end of the zipper.