Poplin - The ubiquitous shirting fabric

Poplin - The ubiquitous shirting fabric

20 July 2020

Often when talking about shirts, you hear the word poplin shirt. But what does that really mean, and how come it is named that way?


As one of the most common shirt weaves, poplin has a long and interesting history. Originally called papelain, the name originates from 15th century Avignon, France. Back then the city had a papal residence and gave the fabric its name - papal linen. Since then, poplin has also referred to various silk and wool blends and is available for a multitude of purposes.

In the world of mens fashion, poplin almost exclusively refers to a very basic over/under cotton weave that is used for shirts and jackets. Poplin gets its characteristics using fine yarns and packing them tightly, usually with 2-3 times as many threads per inch in the warp as in the weft. Especially with higher thread counts, poplin gets a silky, light and smooth feel and becomes superbly crisp when ironed.

Poplin comes in solids, stripes and checks. No wardrobe is complete without a couple of white poplin shirts to match your business attire. Our favorite is named Caucel, white and has a great easy-care treatment.

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