What is the Difference Between Taffeta and Satin

The main difference between taffeta and satin is that taffeta has a matte appearance and is stiffer than satin, which has a shiny appearance.  

Taffeta and satin are two types of weaves made from silk or other artificial fibres. Generally, fabrics made from these weaves have a similar appearance and feel. We usually use these fabrics for formal wear – for a wedding, prom night, ball, etc. Each of these fabrics has its own pros and cons.

Key Areas Covered

1. What is Taffeta 
     – Definition, Features
2. What is Satin
     – Definition, Features
3. What are the Similarities Between Taffeta and Satin
     – Outline of Common Features
4. What is the Difference Between Taffeta and Satin
     – Comparison of Key Differences

Key Terms

Satin, Taffeta

Difference Between Taffeta and Satin - Comparison Summary

What is Taffeta

Taffeta is a crisp, lightweight fabric we usually use for high-end women’s apparel. It’s soft plain-woven fabric. The taffeta weave usually involves silk or artificial fibres like acetate and polyester. Taffeta has a rich look; this is why it’s suitable for wedding dresses, ball gowns, prom dresses, etc. We also use it for interior decorations – for example, curtains and wallcoverings. Another notable feature of taffeta is its shape retention. It doesn’t deform or become distorted. Moreover, taffeta is a breathable fabric. When compared to other fabrics, it is stiffer and has a matte appearance.

Difference Between Taffeta and Satin

There are two types of silk taffeta: piece-dried and yarn-dyed. The former is quite soft, and we often use it for linings while the latter is much stiffer, and we usually use it for formal dresses. A taffeta dress can produce a relatively noisy rustle because of its crispness. This fabric can sometimes also produce an iridescent effect when its wearer moves. However, this may depend on the type of taffeta you wear.

What is Satin

Satin is a type of weave with a lustrous front and a dull back. This weave has four or more fill or weft yarns floating over a warp yarn or vice versa. Also, it can be formed using both natural fibres as well as artificial fibres. We also call the resultant fabric satin.

Main Difference - Taffeta vs Satin

Satin fabrics are light, smooth and soft to the touch. They have a glossy or shiny appearance, like silk. They also have good drape, which makes it ideal for form-fitting dress patterns. We usually use satin for formal dresses, blouses, lingerie, nightgowns, shirts, neckties, etc. It is also used to make pointed shoes used for ballet dances. Satin is ideal for formal wear. Like taffeta, we use it to design wedding dresses, prom dresses and ball gowns.

Similarities Between Taffeta and Satin

  • Taffeta and satin are two types of weaves.
  • They can be made from silk or other artificial fibres.
  • We mainly use both fabrics for ladies’ formal wear – wedding dresses, ball gowns, etc.

Difference Between Taffeta and Satin

Definition

Taffeta is a crisp, lightweight fabric we usually use for high-end women’s apparel while satin is a smooth, glossy fabric, produced by a weave with a lustrous face and dull back.

Appearance

Taffeta has a matte appearance while satin has a shiny and silky appearance.

Feel

Satin has a smooth and soft feel while taffeta has a more textured and coarser feel than satin.

Stiffness

Taffeta is stiffer than satin and has a good shape retention quality; it can hold the shape and volume better than satin. Satin, on the other hand, is ideal for form-fitting dresses.

Weight

Moreover, taffeta tends to be more lightweight than satin.

Conclusion

The main difference between taffeta and satin is their feel and appearance. Satin has a smooth and soft feel while taffeta has a more textured and coarser feel. Moreover, taffeta is not as shiny or glimmer as satin.

Image Courtesy:

1. “American 20th Century, Taffeta Dress, 1935-1942, NGA 15058” By American 20th Century – donated to Wikimedia Commons as part of a project by the National Gallery of Art. (CC0) via Commons Wikimedia
2. “Silk satin dress by Jacques Fath” By Museum at FIT –  (CC BY-SA 2.0) via Commons Wikimedia

About the Author: Hasa

Hasa has a BA degree in English, French and Translation studies. She is currently reading for a Masters degree in English. Her areas of interests include literature, language, linguistics and also food.

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