Textiles are expressions of human creativity and ingenuity. From clothing to carpets, textiles share four basic elements: fiber,color, structure, and decoration. An artist makes a series of choices about how to construct their piece, what dyes to use, and the types of patterns to introduce. Each choice helps determine the look, feel, purpose, and meaning of the finished textile.
With so many possibilities, the vocabulary surrounding textiles can quickly get technical. Textiles 101 provides an illustrated introduction to many of the fibers, dyes, textile structures, and patterning techniques that you can see in our collections, and serves as a general reference for understanding the woven world around us.