The present invention concerns chenille yarns that have significantly improved abrasion resistance and lower pile loss with methods for their production. In particular, the invention concerns chenille yarn in which the effect fibers are fused to a retaining core using bonding filament yarns manufactured from such polymers as ethylene-octene copolymer, quad nylon polymer and nylon 11 polymer and other low melting point binding yarns. Among the uses for the improved chenille are residential upholstery fabrics, decorative throws, contract (office furnishings) fabrics and automotive fabrics. The invention also provides a low cost chenille upholstery fabric having superior abrasion resistance properties and the method for its production. In particular the invention concerns a method for economically manufacturing such a fabric using conventional chenille manufacturing machines and a standard latex tenter frame apparatus. This method also produces the higher abrasion resistant chenille using a standard heat setting machine.
Chenille upholstery fabric is formed by weaving chenille yarn into the fabric. The chenille yarn is first formed on a yarn manufacturing device that twists together two basic components. The first component of the yarn is a core component comprised of two or more continuous yarns twisted together. This first component provides strength to the resulting chenille yarn. It also retains the second component, called the pile, which consists of discontinuous cut fibers. The pile fibers are gripped between and protrude transversely all around the core yarns.
The pile fibers are normally held in place mechanically by friction. This construction results in a certain amount of pile loss during normal consumer use of the fabric formed from the chenille yarn due to this inherent design. Such pile loss causes restrictions in the use of fabrics that can be designed with the normal chenille yarns. These restrictions for flat woven fabrics include: being able to design open soft residential fabrics, the design of contract and automotive fabrics, the design of decorative throws whose fringes will not lose the pile on the chenille in use. For example, these restrictions impose a limit on the extensive use of chenille in upholstery fabrics, since such fabrics are necessarily subject to friction resulting in the unsightly removal of pile. Thus, prior to the present invention chenille has not played a significant role in the fabrication of high quality upholstery fabrics.