What is hollow fiber?
As you had perhaps guessed, hollow fiber duvets get their name since they’re made from fibers that have space between their knotting. The ‘hollow’ space between the fibers helps to ensure that the duvet is breathable and also means it’s higher than many other comparable duvets filled with alternative synthetic fillings.
What are the benefits of hollow fiber?
There are many benefits to using hollow fiber. Here are the top reasons for it being so popular for bedding:
- Value for money – hollow fiber is a very affordable material and its high quality makes it fantastic value for money.
- Maintenance – This material requires low maintenance as it is usually machine washable and easy to dry. It also doesn’t require as much fluffing and re-arranging as some feather and down products do.
- Lightweight – This is a lightweight material that is airy and won’t weigh you down.
- Breathable – The hollow spaces allow the fabric to breathe and won’t stifle you in the night.
What is Microfiber?
Microfibres are finer than any fiber in nature.
First used in functional sportswear, it was not long before they became fashionable as well.
Microfibres are well suited for blending with other man-made and natural fibers.
Around the world at two kilos.
Silk, the finest natural thread we know, sets the benchmark for measuring fibers: it is 1 dtex (decitex), meaning that one gram of fiber is 10,000 meters long.
The man-made fiber industry has now succeeded in producing even finer ones.
Microfibres are usually made of polyester, polyamide, or acrylic – with titers in the range of 0.5 to 1.2 dtex.
Just under three kilos of this thread would be enough to go round the globe at the equator.
Microfibres can be twice as fine as silk, three times finer than cotton, some six times finer than wool, and sixty times finer than a human hair.
These very fine threads are “bundled” into filament yarns or cut to a certain staple length, before being spun into yarn.
The use of microfibres gives a much higher volume for the same weight. This explains the particular advantages of microfibres: Textiles made from them have very high thread density.
This means they have a much higher number of air chambers and tiny pores, allowing the skin to breathe and the body to regulate temperature more easily.
Microfibre is made up of fine fibers which are tightly woven together, allowing no space between them.
This material is also synthetic and made up of 100% polyester.
Whereas traditional hollow fiber duvets are made from a filling that has fibers with hollow space between them, microfiber duvets have very fine fibers which are tightly woven and without the hollow space. Microfiber duvets offer the ultimate warmth due to their tightly packed fibers and you’ll find that most come treated with an anti-allergy coating which will ensure they’re the perfect choice for those suffering from allergies. Of course, microfiber duvets are also lightweight compared to natural filled duvets and are one of the most popular synthetic fillings currently on the market. Microfiber provides warmth without the weight and as such, duvets with a microfibre filling can be very light yet warm.
Microfibres are made solely from man-made fibers. They are the finest of all the fibers.
Sportswear from microfibres functions particularly well. It is breathable and at the same time provides reliable protection against wind and rain.
Fashionable apparels in microfibres have a graceful flow, silk-like feel, and are extremely comfortable.
Microfibre clothing is not sensitive, retaining its positive qualities after washing or cleaning.
What are the benefits of microfiber?
Microfiber has some similar benefits to hollow fiber. Here is why it’s such a great option for your bedding:
- Affordability – Although it is not typically as inexpensive as hollow fiber, it is still fantastic value for money.
- Maintenance – This is also a low-maintenance product. All of our microfiber products are machine washable and easy to dry.
- Warmth – Because the fibers are so tightly woven together it will keep you nice and warm all through the night.
- Soft as down – The fine fibers of microfiber give a soft and silky feel. This makes it a great substitute for feather and down products.
Production of Nonwoven Fabrics from Staple Fibers
Production of Woven Fabrics from Staple Fibers
Production of Knit Fabrics from Staple Fibers
As you can see from the diagrams, producing nonwoven fabrics has fewer steps than woven or knit fabrics. Also, the production speed for making staple fiber nonwoven fabrics is much faster (100 to 400 yards per minute) than woven fabrics (0.5 to 6 yards per minute) and knit fabrics (2 to 16 yards per minute). Because of the higher speeds and reduction of steps, nonwoven fabrics cost much less to produce.
Nonwoven Fabrics Breakdown
The fibers are bonded together by mechanical bonding (fiber entanglement), chemical bonding (fibers are chemically bonded together with glue-like compounds), or thermal bonding (where low-melt fibers are used and heat is used to melt the fiber to each other). Nonwoven fabrics are lighter and weaker than woven or knit fabrics. They don’t have much memory (for example, if you bend your elbow the fabric will retain that position and leave a pucker in the fabric) or laundering durability, making them unsuitable in durable clothing applications. Since they are cheap to produce, they’re ideal for single-use products such as wipes, medical products, feminine hygiene products disposable diapers, etc.
Woven Fabrics Breakdown
Woven fabrics are produced on a loom. The loom joins two sets of yarns by weaving one set between the other. The two sets of yarns are perpendicular to each other. One set is called the warp and runs the length of the fabric. The loom will raise some other warp yarns and some down, ultimately creating a shed. The fill or weft yarn is placed in the shed parallel to the ward yarn and the shed closes. Now the yarns that down went up, and the ones that were up to go down, creating another shed as another fill yarn is put through. Many different fabric constructions (like plain weave, twill weave, etc.) can be created by changing which yarns are opened up or pulled down in the shed. Woven fabrics are durable to washing and can be finished to yield many different properties (like being flame-retardant or water-repellant). They do not have much stretch because of the tightness of the yarns in the fabric. Yarn properties are important for the fabric’s performance. If you want a more stretchy fabric you can add some elastomeric fibers (think Spandex) to the yarn.
Knit Fabrics Breakdown
Knitting is defined as forming a fabric utilizing interloping the yarn. Knitting machines do the same interloping of yarn that a hand knitter does. Knit fabrics have stretch because of the looseness of the fabric’s yarn structure (compared to knits and most nonwovens). Because of this looseness, the fabric can tighten up due to the mechanical action in laundering. That’s why knit fabrics shrink. Most current knit fabrics are pre-shrunk before a garment is made from them, which eliminates most shrinkage. Because the yarns in knit fabrics are looped around themselves if you pick a knit fabric the whole length of that course of yarn will unravel. I’m sure you have seen this happen before. Knit fabrics are comfortable and warm, which explains why many sweaters are made from them.
As you can see, there are many differences in these fabrics and there are many uses for each type. The pie in the sky is to produce a comfortable garment of nonwoven fabrics that will be durable, as well as more economical to produce. This has not yet been accomplished—but there’s always hope.
Source from: Industrievereinigung Chemiefaser e.V.