Used particularly in embroidery, these are threads made of silver, gold, copper or aluminium that are milled or beaten, and either cut into fine strips and wrapped around a core, or used flat, backed with strengthening paper or glue. Twisted metallic threads also exist, made from melted metals and alloys that are extruded into fine filaments.
Fabrics woven with an element of metallic thread catch the light in direct relationship to how much is used in the construction, and the amount of light they are exposed to: this makes them particularly useful for brightening a dark corner, or adding a bit of extra ‘life’ to a scheme.
With the stronger, more wiry threads, fabric can be scrunched up to create sculptural shapes, which adds another level of design possibilities. For example, ribbon woven with a fine strand of metal on either side holds its shape beautifully.
Zadari or zardoji embroidery work, or a highlight interest.