What is "Calico" - Definition & Explanation
Last Updated on: 12-Mar-2023 (6 months, 21 days ago)
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Calico is a type of plain-woven textile fabric that is made from unbleached and un-dyed cotton fibers. It is a lightweight and durable fabric that is commonly used for a variety of different applications, including clothing, bed linens, and home decor.

The name "calico" is derived from the city of Calicut (now known as Kozhikode) in southern India, which was a major center for cotton production and trade during the 11th century. Calico was originally imported to Europe from India in the 17th century, where it quickly became popular due to its affordability, durability, and versatility.

Calico is typically made from a plain weave construction, which consists of a simple over-and-under pattern of warp and weft threads. This gives the fabric a smooth and even surface that is ideal for printing and dyeing. Calico is also known for its soft and breathable properties, making it a comfortable choice for clothing and other types of textiles.

In India, calico is still produced using traditional methods in many regions, including Gujarat and Tamil Nadu. These regions are known for their vibrant and intricate hand-block printed designs, which are created using wooden blocks that are carved with intricate patterns. The fabric is then dyed in a variety of different colors to create unique and eye-catching designs.

Some of the top Indian manufacturers and users of calico fabric include:

Arvind Limited: Arvind Limited is one of the largest textile manufacturers in India, and produces a wide range of different fabrics, including calico. The company has a strong focus on sustainability, and uses eco-friendly production methods to reduce its environmental impact.

Welspun India: Welspun India is another major textile manufacturer that produces calico and other types of fabrics. The company is known for its innovative and sustainable production methods, and has won several awards for its commitment to environmental stewardship.

Kalamkari: Kalamkari is a traditional form of hand-block printing that is commonly used to create intricate designs on calico and other types of cotton fabrics. This art form has been practiced in India for centuries, and is still widely used today to create beautiful and unique textiles.

Fabindia: Fabindia is a popular retailer of traditional Indian textiles, including calico. The company works with local artisans and producers to create unique and sustainable products, and has a strong focus on supporting local communities and preserving traditional crafts.

In conclusion, calico is a versatile and durable fabric that is commonly used for a variety of different applications, including clothing and home decor. It has a long and rich history in India, and is still produced using traditional methods in many regions. Some of the top Indian manufacturers and users of calico fabric include Arvind Limited, Welspun India, Kalamkari, and Fabindia, all of whom are committed to sustainable and ethical production practices.
One of the oldest basic cotton fabrics on the market that traces its origin to Calcutta, India. Usually a plain, closely woven inexpensive cloth made in solid colors on a white or contrasting background. Often one, two, or three colors are seen on the face of the goods which are usually discharge or resist printed, frequently in a small floral pattern. Used mainly for aprons, dresses, crazy quilts, sportswear. Often interchangeable with percale - which is 80-square cotton.
Cotton fabric with a low-count, plain weave. It originated in Calcutta, India, and is one of the oldest cottons. Calico is rather coarse and light in weight. The pattern is printed on one side by discharge or resist printing so it generally isn't color fast. It is often sized for crispness but washes out and requires starch each time. Designs are often geometric in shape, but originally elaborate designs of birds, trees, and flowers. Calico is usually inexpensive and similar to percale. Very little true calico is on the market to-day, but the designs are still in use on other fabrics and sold as 'calico print'.

Some other terms

Some more terms:

Applying color(s) in definite, repeated patterns of fabric by any one of a number of printing methods. Color is deposited in thick paste form and treated with steam or chemicals to cause it to...
Dip 47
a) An immersion of relatively short duration of a textile in a liquid. b) The depth of liquor in the inner cylinder of a rotating-cage washing machine. c) A term sometimes used to describe the...
Combed yarn is a type of yarn produced through a specialized process known as combing, which involves the removal of short fibers and impurities from the longer staple fibers. The combed yarn is...
Removal of loose threads, knots, slubs, burs, and other extraneous materials from fabrics by means of a burling iron, a type of tweezer. The trick is to remove the impurity without damaging the...
A type of fiber dyeing in which colored pigments are injected into the spinning solution prior to the extrusion of the fiber through the spinneret. Fibers and yarns colored in this manner are...

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