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Corduroy: Best Fabric for Ladies’ Winter Fashion

hand holding corduroy jackets

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  Fashion trends are changing so fast as people like keeping up with the latest fashions and styles. But some clothes are never entirely gone out of fashion and always look classic in your wardrobe. Corduroy clothes are one of them. After experiencing ups and downs in the fashion industry, corduroy eventually enjoyed many years at the top of the fashion charts. So what makes corduroy sp popular? How to wear corduroy clothes in a stylish way? To find out the answers, let’s take a look at this article.

What is Corduroy

corduroy jacket and button

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  Before we learn more about corduroy, it is important to make clear what’s corduroy. Corduroy is considered a durable clothing fabric that is widely used in the fashion industry, especially ideal for long pants, jackets, and clothes for fall and spring conditions, or mild winter days as it is thick, warm, and cozy, making sure you look great and feel warm in the cold seasons. Such advantages are attributed to its texture and structure. Corduroy is made of twisted fibers, making it a thicker material, and therefore good at retaining heat. Corduroy can also be dyed in a wide variety of different colors and can be used for making sofa covers, children’s toys, and garments. 

Is Corduroy Cotton-Made?

corduroy skirts

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  Cotton might spring to your mind when it comes to what corduroy is made of. In fact, corduroy can be made of various fibers from cotton to polyester. Corduroy is most often made of cotton. It can also be woven with a cotton blend, blends of polyester and cotton, or full polyesterWool is occasionally used in the production of corduroy, but this creates a less prominent ridge pattern.

Different Types of Corduroy

gallery of corduroy fabric

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  Corduroy is composed of twisted fibers, or specifically, wales. Wales are ridges that run vertically down the corduroy fabric. Corduroy can be classified into different types depending on the number of ridges per inchThe higher the number, the more ridges they are, and they are narrower.  Corduroy with wider wales like elephant corduroy is often used on hard-wearing trousers, while those with finer wales such as pinwale corduroy will make for a finer garment. Here are six types of corduroy. Each of them has its characteristics and advantages. 

Standard Corduroy

Standard corduroy has 11 wales per inch. Usually, when ridges of corduroy reach 8 and 13 per inch, such corduroy fabric is normally considered to be classic corduroy. Standard corduroy is the most commonly used type. 

Pinwale Corduroy

Pinwale corduroy is characterized by tiny ridges in every square inch. The wale count of pinwale corduroy often is as high as 16 or above per inch. Pinwale corduroy is used for children’s clothing and soft toys.

Elephant Corduroy

This type of corduroy has very wide ridges, just like the folds and wrinkles in an elephant’s skin, This type of fabric has a wale count between 1.5 and 6. Due to this feature, elephant corduroy fabric is great for cold winter clothing or soft coverings of furniture, such as sofa covers.

Pigment-dyed Corduroy

It is called pigment-dyed corduroy due to its dyeing process that uses pigment dyes (a substance that provides colors to materials ). During this process, dyes are applied to the surface of the fabric before cutting and sewing. The corduroy dyeing process results in a mottled appearance that becomes more distinct with each washing.

Spandex Corduroy

Textile manufacturers combine cotton, poly blend, and wool corduroy with a small amount of spandex to produce a stretchable corduroy fabric, making the fabric comfortable and soft. Therefore, spandex corduroy is commonly used for children’s garments.

Bedford Corduroy

This type of corduroy has a weave similar to corduroy. However, it has ribs down the length of the fabric that is not cut, resulting in less noticeable ridges. Bedford corduroy is durable and often used in garments that require a hard-wearing cloth surface, such as work clothes, heavy jackets, and coats.

How is Corduroy Made?

corduroy jacket and button

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  The question of how corduroy is made seems complicated, but it is not. As corduroy is a woven fabric, there is no doubt that it is composed of twisted yarns. To be specific, yarns are woven into the base fabric to form wales. Wales are those raised ridges that run vertically down the fabric. Then, the wales are cut into piles, forming the corduroy fabric.

  Yarns woven together determine the fabric’s structure and durability. Most types of corduroy fabric feature plain weave. Once the primary weave is complete, textile manufacturers add a “pile thread”.

Is Corduroy Expensive?

girl in corduroy skirt

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  Corduroy was more expensive than other fabrics made with similar materials due to its relatively complicated production process. But now thanks to automation and manufacturing reducing labor costs, corduroy is available for ordinary people and is not so expensive anymore. Besides, corduroy is generally not expensive as it is an ordinary and commonly used fabric. If the prices of corduroy clothes are high, this is because the brand of the corduroy clothes is high-end. 

Is Corduroy Warm Enough for Winter?

red corduroy jacket

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  The answer to this question depends on the specific winter situation. But one thing for sure is that corduroy made with a pile weave is a thicker material, which is good at keeping heat. Therefore, corduroy indeed offers warmth to you. Such warmth is conditional. If you will be spending time outside in extremely cold weather (temperature below 32 °F), you’d better put on garments made from wool, silk, or polypropylene to hold body heat rather than corduroy. Corduroy is able to keep you warm when you are on mild winter days (an average low of 40 °F to 50 °F). Corduroy fabric usually contains cotton that has small pores which help in trapping air close to your body.

How to Maintain Corduroy Clothing?

steps of cleaning corduroy

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  Despite its durability, we still need to take good care of our beautiful corduroy garments when cleaning them, otherwise, they may shrink, be distorted, or be damaged by lint or color. Here are some tips to maintain corduroy clothes in the right way.

How to Clean

Step 1: Stay Away from A High Temperature

   First of all, most corduroy clothes actually can be washed by machine or hand. Before washing the clothes, the first step is to button or zip them up and turn their inside out. This step helps protect the vibrancy of the color. Next, there is no need to scrub the fabric harshly if there are stains left on the fabric. Saturate your corduroy clothes in the water to help you remove stains or smells. The temperature of the water depends on the color of your corduroy. Dark-colored corduroy should be washed in cold water, while light-colored corduroy should go in a warm wash. The temperature of the water should not be higher than 100℉. Do not soak your delicate corduroy in hot water as it will cause shrinkage in the fabric, cause its colors to fade, or even distort the fabric. If you want to keep your corduroy clean or give it a pleasant smell, you can add regular detergents and fabric softeners.

Step 2: Separate Corduroy Clothes

   Then, wash it separately and gently. If the stain is still there after soaking the cloth for 5 to 10 minutes, you can brush it gently with a soft brush like a sponge when the garment is still slightly damp. It is safe to soak and wash corduroy items together. But washing dark-colored corduroy together with light-colored ones does not make the laundry easier. Instead, it brings a lot of trouble as colors from dark-color clothes may fade and run into other corduroy items. Also, don’t mix corduroy with different types of fabrics, especially those producing lint as the lint will attach itself to the corduroy. Besides, to maintain your corduroy’s shape and make it look better, you can iron corduroy clothes after they are dry to remove wrinkles. 

How Often Should You Clean Corduroy Clothing

clothings in basket

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  A high wash frequency may cause much fading. Therefore, it is not necessary to clean corduroy pants or clothes right after every wear except if there are obvious stains. You can just wash your corduroy items after 3 to 4 years. 

How to Dry

  There are two ways to dry your corduroy clothing: machine drying and air drying. You adjust the dryer on low heat after the corduroy clothing is washed by machine. The machine will do the job.

   If you prefer hand washing, air drying is also a good idea for you. Also, this method prevents wrinkles. Put garments on clothes hangers. And dry them in the shade rather than under direct sunlight to keep them straight and to keep them from fading.

Does Corduroy Shrink Easily?

  Corduroy does not shrink easily unless you expose it to high heat levels. For example, the fabric shrinks if it is soaked in very hot water for a while or is left in the dryer or under the direct sun for too long. Also, leaving the iron on high heat on the corduroy fabric for a while also leads to shrinkage. Usually, corduroy clothes shrink in length rather than width. Therefore, before beginning to clean your corduroy items, you can take a look at the care label inside to know specific care measures and avoid any accidents that damage your corduroy.

Classic Corduroy Clothing for Ladies

women is corduroy clothings

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  Corduroy is used in a lot of materials, ranging from pillow covers to hats, especially garments. To produce pretty and classic corduroy clothing for ladies, women’s wear manufacturer make a range of garments with corduroy. Despite its versatility, today we focus on classic corduroy clothing for ladies, that is, corduroy pants, jackets, and shirts.

Corduroy Pants

When trouser manufacturers make corduroy pants, they always attempt to make sure corduroy pants look pretty while keeping you warm and incredibly comfortable in winter. Corduroy pants go great with shirts, coats, and sweaters, providing ladies with casual looks.

Corduroy Jackets

Corduroy jackets are also soft, warm, and lightweight, making them a perfect option for autumn outfits. When it comes to how to wear a corduroy jacket, corduroy jackets and sweaters make a good combination, making you look casual and chic.

Vintage Corduroy Shirts

Vintage corduroy shirts both look classic. A casual and stylish way to wear corduroy shirts is to simply wear them with light-colored blue skinny jeans. Tucking the shirt in the jeans would often make you look leaner and smarter.

Key Takeaway

   All in all, corduroy is a durable comfortable fabric featuring raised lines (wales), which is widely used for winter clothes. Different types of corduroy are suitable for different uses depending on the number of ridges per inch. No matter how many ridges the corduroy fabric has, we need to keep it from hanging under direct sunlight or leaving it at a high temperature for too long. With these tips in mind, you can wear your pretty corduroy clothes without damaging them accidentally. 


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