Insulating Fabrics suitable for winter (cold weather)

Are you preparing for winter or living in cold climates and seeking suitable clothing and materials to keep warm? Here is a list of fabric types known for their insulating properties, helping you stay comfortable and cozy in cold weather conditions.

what to wear in winter

Winter – different people have different imagery in their minds regarding this season. Some have positive images like the gently falling snowflakes, skating on ice, warm food, cup of hot chocolate, cuddling under warm quilts, but for some like me, winter does not conjure up many pleasant images.

The unrelenting cold that seeps into the bones without any mercy – I really cannot cope in such weather or even lesser weather for long. It puts a damper on all my mood and activities. It is me, not the weather, I know.

There are people living in places with more winter months out of the year than any other season and they deal with the cold so happily. They must have a way to build good memories during winter.

I cope in this climate by wearing the appropriate clothes that will warm me up somehow and make me function near to normal. Here is what I have learned.

Choose the best fabric for winter clothing

winter fabrics

Best wool – Merino wool fabric and Cashmere wool

Merino wool is the best wool fabric ever – it is very comfortable, soft, and itch-free against the skin, lightweight, and very insulating. It is also very easy to maintain, naturally anti-bacterial, wrinkle-resistant, and waterproof. It manages to wick moisture away from the body keeping you comfortably warm throughout. 

Cashmere is a very expensive wool fabric but one of the most insulating fabrics ever. It is also very lightweight. Cashmere wool scarves are a very stylish winter essential. Learn more about cashmere fabric here.

Tweed /Woolen fabrics

Most of the time wool is said in the same breath as winter. But among wool clothes, those made of woolen yarns (made of carded yarns) are the best to wear during winter. They have better insulation than any other type. The fabric is very soft. This is because the woolen yarn is fuzzier and bulkier and hence keeps you warmer. These fabrics are better suited to make jackets and sweaters. Tweed is a woolen fabric with a hairy texture and thick colored slubs. 

Gabardine/Worsted Wool fabric 

The worsted fabric is made of yarns that are smoother and tightly twisted (made of combed yarns). Gabardine is a worsted fabric. These fabrics are costlier and are used for making tailored clothes. 

Wool blends

Wool blends usually have 55% virgin wool content and this, is blended with other fibers for the extra advantages they provide. Viscose – wool blend fabrics have a silky feel because of viscose content. When spandex is added to wool ( for eg : fabric that is 95% merino wool and 5% spandex) this combines the figure-hugging property of spandex with the insulating property of wool.


Flannel is a thick warm fabric used to make cozy pajamas.


Fleece is a medium thick synthetic fabric with enough insulating properties. It is usually used as an inner layer against the skin, lining wool or other fabrics- the fleece is very soft and smooth against the skin. Fleece is a very good alternative to wool if you have allergy to wool. You have to choose good quality fleece which is anti-pill other wise after a few washes it can look horrible. Learn more about fleece here. 


Acrylic is an affordable substitute for wool, It is used to make very soft lightweight (than wool) thermal clothes. Sweaters made of acrylic are almost indistinguishable from woolen ones. Learn more about acrylic here.

Faux fur

There is something very luxurious about a faux fur coat. It can make a statement and keep you warm.

Quilted fabric

The Batting inside quilted fabrics can make these fabrics very cozy.


Moleskin is a tightly woven thick cotton fabric with a nap similar to suede. It is used to make winter ready pants. 

Related posts : How to make fleece hats; Best fabrics for summer clothes ; What to wear when exercising.

Subscribe to get weekly notifications of posts in your email

Author: Sarina Tariq

Hi, I love sewing, fabric, fashion, embroidery, doing easy DIY projects and then writing about them. Hope you have fun learning from sewguide as much as I do. If you find any mistakes here, please point it out in the comments.

2 thoughts on “Insulating Fabrics suitable for winter (cold weather)”

  1. Hi Sarina, I am really impressed by your site and want to “subscribe” so I don’t miss anything and to be reminded to take a look and learn something new at least once a week. As hard as I looked I did not see a place to subscribe, do you have one?
    Keep up the great work and thank you for your hard work.

    • Hi Tamara
      Thanks for the kind words and interest in subscribing ; at present I do not have a subscribe button though I do send a newletter monthly once- I will add your email id to the list.

Your opinion is important. Leave a comment