Vocational Vocabulary: Denier

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What is Denier?

Simply put, denier is a unit of measurement for fiber thickness and weight. A single denier unit is based on a 9000 meter strand of silk, which weighs about 1 gram. So as an example, if a 9000 meter strand of polyester weighs 80 grams, the fabric made with that polyester would be 80D or 80 Denier. If the fiber strand weighs less than 1 gram, it is considered a Microfiber.

Fun Fact: The average human hair is about 20 Denier.

Does the Denier count affect garment decoration?

The answer is Yes and No. It all really depends on what decoration process you are using.

For decorations being applied on the surface of the fabric (e.g. Heat Transfers, Screen Printing, Sublimation, DTG), the fiber thickness generally doesn’t make a difference. As long as the fabric is receptive to the ink/vinyl, you shouldn’t have any problems.

However, when it comes to Embroidery, you may need to make some adjustments. If the fabric you will be embroidering has a high denier, you may want to switch to a heavier thread and needle. Because high denier fabrics are generally made to withstand a lot of wear and tear (e.g. Canvas, Duck Fabric, Cordura®), you want the embroidered design/stitching to be just as durable.

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