Fabric

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The word fabric refers to any sheet of material made by weaving things together. This means that chainmaille is a fabric while paper is not. (of course, by this definition, felt isn't a fabric either)

So period fabric materials included:

  • Linen - mainly for underclothes and lining wool
  • Cotton - rare in late period, almost completely non-existant in early period, generally a fluffy fabric like flannelette, not often similar to our modern cotton
  • Wool - used for dresses, tunics, cloaks
  • Silk - expensive because it was brighter, stronger, and nicer.
  • Hemp - used by peasants sometimes in place of linen. Hemp is coarser than linen.
  • nettle cloth - yes early period people made cloth from nettles, I think it was somewhat like linen.