Ratteen

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Ratteen

 

(also rateen), a woolen fabric with a distinctive surface consisting of short curls of dense pile. The surface is produced by finishing the pile fabric on a special machine, which runs the cloth between two friction plates. The pattern resulting on the fabric’s surface is determined by the material from which the upper plate is made (hair brush, plush, soft rubber, or cloth), the direction and amplitude of the plate’s movement, and the amount of pressure the plate applies on the cloth. The fibers are rolled into balls, coiled into small knots or locks, or formed into waves. They are then fixed by heat treatment. In addition to improving the appearance of the fabric, the process imparts to the pile greater wear resistance. It is used in the manufacture of high-quality fabrics for overcoats.