Gauze and Leno Fabric

Sushant Raghunath Desai
DKTE’S Textile and Engineering Institute, Ichalkaranji-416115 (MH), India.

In this article we are going to learn about gauze/leno fabric, traditionally it also called “Gaza”[1]. In this fabric basic principle contains Crossed End and Standard End which bound by weft position. In this we are going to learn different methods of producing fabric weave, and also different characteristic of fabric. Gauze fabric allows light and air to pass though freely so, used as any area and have various applications. We also conclude that Gauze is as same as Leno.

Gauze and Leno Fabric
Gauze and Leno Fabric


Leno weave also called as Gauze weave or Crossed weave was traditionally woven in Palestine [1] and the English word is said to derive from the place name for Gaza a center of weaving in the region. 

Gauze is thin, translucent fabric with loose open weave. In technical terms “gauze” is a weave structure in which the weft yarns are arranged in pairs and are crossed before and after each warp yarn keeping weft firmly in place. It produces an open fabric with almost no yarn slippage miss placement of weft which causes the durability of fabric. This weave structure is used to add stability to fabric, which is important when using fine yarns loosely spaced

Gauze and Leno
Gauze and Leno

 It was originally made of silk and was used for clothing. It is now used for many different things, including gauze sponges for medical purposes. When used for medical dressing, gauze is generally made of cotton [1,5]. It is especially useful for dressing wounds where other fabrics might stick to the burn or laceration.

The yarn used most frequently in the manufacturing of these fabrics are cotton, spun rayon staple, polyester blend, filament polyamide, glass and occasionally silk.

2. Principle Construction of Leno and Gauze Fabric

In gauze and leno weaving certain ends-termed crossing ends are passed from side to side of what are termed standard ends, and are bound in by the weft in this position.

[3] A crossed system of interlacing can be obtained when all the warp is bought from one beam, and to produce some other desired effect. For producing this effects two ends are required from different beams are used. Warp yarn are crossing and standard end are combined in stripe in which ends are interlaced in ordinary manner so as to form required weave. 

Term leno may applied to all the structure in which ends are transferred from one side to other of standard end, while gauze is open structure or that of same as leno.

Gauze and Leno Fabric

Although there exist a number of mechanically different system to achieve the necessary lateral movement of one thread in respect of another the resultant structure produced by each of each of them may be identical. The thread manipulations required to produce the simplest structure of this type known as the plain leno or gauze are depicted in figure above. At A and B respectively cross-sectional views of two successive sheds are in which at A the crossing end (black) forms the top shed on of on the left of the standard (white), and at B on right of the standard end. Thus in plain leno using bottom douping system illustrated at A and B, the crossing end is up and the and the standard end is down on every pick but in between each between each successive shed the crossing end under the standard end prior to each lift and weft is held between the half twist of crossing end. The interlacing diagrams C and D show the appearance of the plain leno structure, the former obtained when one beam is used and the distortion of both the sets of ends is equal, and latter achieved when crossing end are placed on lightly tensioned beam and, therefore, bend permanently, and the standard end lie straight being placed on heavily tensioned beam. At E and F in figure above two other structure are given which corresponds respectively with C and D but differ from them that the alternate vertical rows of leno in former two are pointed drafted. This in effect means that whilst in one row the crossing end on given end on given pick crosses from left to right, in next row the crossing end on the same pick crosses from right to left. Diagram G shows a section of plain leno structure cut through the weft whilst the appearance of a plain leno cloth is described in fig.

2.1 Methods of Manufacturing

The method of controlling the crossing end is given in fig.3.1 below. It has produce only in handloom weaving and with slow speed. But to produce selvedge for leno it is not applicable for modern type of high speed type of weaving machine[4]. The main method of producing of leno and gauze structure may listed as

  1. Flat steel doups with eye.
  2. Flat steel doups with slot.
  3. Gauze and tug reed mechanism.
  4. Eyed needle and slider frame device.
  5. Rotating bobbin and geared disc mounting.

The last method is different than other first four method, due to formation of twisted of thread in weaving but as it is only applicable for producing leno selvedge it cannot be regarded as formation of cloth. 

3. Weaving

3.1 Gauze Heald Shafts & Doup Heald

To weave plain gauze we require two ordinary healds called as doup heald. The two ordinary heald shafts are hung in the loom in the ordinary way, the odd number of warp ends healded through shaft 2, counting from front to back, and even number of heald shaft 1. Three or four inches in front of these two shafts, and between it and the cloth fell, the heald shafts characteristic of the gauze loom are hung. These are a whole heald shafts, designed the stan board, and the half heald shaft named for our purpose the doup. Within the heald eyes of standard, the eyes of half heald shafts are looped, or secured. From back heald shaft, the odd-numbered warp ends are crossed under even number of ends, and through the healds on the doup.

Primarily, the object of this structure is to obtain a means of making the odd threads of the warp lift nearly two thread round the even thread. If crossed thread are lifted, being already passed under the other ends, they will naturally be almost round them. If the warp and weft are to be woven into plain cloth, the alternate crossing of the pair of common heald shafts will not be interfered with by the crossing standard and doup, because the doup moves easily up and down on the standard, in obedience to the lift of the second heald shaft 

Structure of Standard End & Crossed End in Plain Gauze
Structure of Standard End & Crossed End in Plain Gauze

There are really several methods of weaving plain gauze. On the oldest method, the mounting consisted of two back leaves of common heddles, two front leaves, then named pause over this method, due to it is discarded. In early two methods are employed same number of heald shafts but in other ways. 
In this method in mounting one warp end and heald shaft in undermost and stationary. In back heald shafts all the crossing threads are healded and in front shaft carries stationary ends. This crossed ends arepassed through doup, for plain weaving we have heald shafts 1 and 2 crossing and doup heald should raising with shaft 2. When fabric to be woven front shaft never moves as it simply holding down the warp end being crossed, as there should be action in between back heald shafts and the doup. On pick 1 the doup is lifted, while at same time two heald shafts are depressed, on pick 2 the doup and heald shafts are lifted, as 1 remain depressed. As the action of first motion is that lift crossing thread over standard ends, and there will be appropriate weft insertion takes place. On the second action crossing threads on other side of standard threads and weft insertion takes place so in this two action thus made proper shed.

Method of Weaving Plain Gauze/Leno.[ Book of Watson’s Advanced Design]
Method of Weaving Plain Gauze/Leno.[ Book of Watson’s Advanced Design] 

In newer method, instead of being always at stand the standard end always lifted. We have to assume four picks and four ends. On pick 1 heald shafts 2 and the doup heald are lifted; on pick 2 the two heald shafts re lifted and doup are remains stationary. On pick 3 heald shafts and doup are lift, on pick 4 heald shaft 1 and 2 lifted. As we understand that pick 1 and 3 are open shed is made, crossing warps end on one side of standard end; on pick 2 and 4 a crossed shed is formed, with the crossing warp end on other of its neighboring standard end. Through each shed weft pick has flows.

4. Characteristics of Leno and Gauze Fabric [3]

  • The gauze weave construction produces a fabric very light in weight and with an open mesh effect.
  • Leno weaves also produces curtain materials, some shirting and dress goods.
  • This weave produces such light-weight fabrics have strength that could not be provided by plain weave.
  • The gauze weave sometimes referred to as the leno weave because it made on leno loom.
  • On leno loom, the action of one warp yarn is similar to action on plain weave.
  • The doup attachment, a hairpin-like device at the heddle, alternately pulls the second warp yarns up or down to right or left with each pick passage. This cause the pair of warp yarn to be twisted, in effect, around each weft yarn.
  • The leno is sometimes used in combination with the plain weave to produce a stripe on a plain back ground.
  • The fabric weight varies depending upon thickness of the yarns, which could spun.

5. Applications of Gauze and Leno Fabric

Leno weave fabric allows light and air to pass through freely so are used in any area where a sheer, open weave fabric is required that will not bruise. If a simple in-and-out flat weave were woven very loosely to achieve the same effect the threads would have a tendency to this brushing.

Applications of Gauze and Leno Fabric
Applications of Gauze and Leno Fabric

5.1 Madras Muslin

It is cotton fabric of plain weave. It is made in a wide range of weights from delicate sheers to coarse sheeting. It get its name from the city of Mosul, Iraq, where it may have been first manufactured [5].

When sewing clothing, a dressmaker may test the fit of a garment, using an inexpensive muslin fabric before cutting pieces from expensive fabric, Thereby avoiding costly mistakes. This garment is often called “Muslin”. 

5.1.1. Theater and Photography

Muslin is often the cloth of choice for theater sets. It is used to mask the Background of sets and to establish the mood or feel of different scenes. It receives paint well and, if treated properly, can be made translucent.
It also holds dyes well. It is often used to create nighttime scenes because when dyed, it often gets a wavy look with the color varying slightly, such that it resembles a night sky. Muslin shrinks after it is painted or sprayed with water.

5.1.2. Medicine

Surgeons used Muslin gauze in Cerebrovascular (Type of Disease) neurosurgery [6] to wrap around intracranial vessels at risk for bleeding. The thought that the gauze reinforces the artery and helps prevent rupture.

5.2 Mosquito Net

Mosquito netting can be made from cotton, polyethylene, polyester, polypropylene [8]. A mosquito bar is an alternate form of a mosquito net. It is constructed of a fine see through mesh fabric mounted on and draped over a box shaped frame.

5.3 Agro Textiles

5.3.1. Shed Nets

The warp-knitted nets are used in order to protect fields and greenhouses from the intense solar radiation for healthy plant growth and good harvest. So the excess heat does not entered under the screen.

Also the humans specially Ladies, they use scarp to protect the face or body from high sun radiations and from pollution. The fabric which is woven is light in weight and having attractive design.

5.3.2. Bird Net

Knitted monofilament nets offer effective passive protection of seeds, crops, fruit against damage caused by birds and a variety of pests.

5.3.3. Nets of Covering Pallets

For safe transportation of fruits and veg. to the market the boxes are covered with large mesh nets and pallets to stop the boxes being turned upside down. This prevents damage of goods during transportation.

5.4 Sheer Curtain 

A common use for sheer fabric is in curtains, which allows for sunlight to pass through during daylight. Due to loose weave in sheer fabrics curtains offer little heat insulation. When it is lighter on the inside of a room than it is on the outside, then inside of the room can be seen from the outside. It is also used in dancing wear, wedding gowns and formal costumes.

5.5 In Chemistry

There are two types of wire gauze used in chemistry: a normally woven wire gauze, and one with white circle imprinted on it. The latter is ceramic composite intended to aid in dispersal in heat.

6. References

  1. Gauze Wikipedia (History and Uses).
  2. Watson’s Advanced Textile Design, Edition IV, Z J Grosicki (208, 209, 211).
  3. Textile Weaving and Design, W S Murphy.
  4. Textile Apex (Applications Of Agro-Textiles ),Textile In Agriculture- Saiful Sabuz.
  5. Leno Wikipedia (On-line Digital Archive of Documents on Weaving and related topics: Leno weaves, International Textbook Company.)
  6. Muslin Wikipedia (Muslin, Oxford English Dictionary, Third Edition. Webster’s Unabridged Dictionary. )
  7. Agreetextile Wikipedia.
  8. Mosquito net Wikipedia.
  9.  Knitted Views (volume 12/issue No:04)

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