Silk is a mark of luxury and wealth, though it is more affordable now compared to when it was used in the past. It is a soft, shiny material that can be dyed in different colours, and is very comfortable for the user to wear. The silk is gathered from the cocoons of mulberry silkworms (though other insects produce silks), then woven into textiles. The reason silk is so shimmery is because silk fibres refract light at different angles, causing different colours. Despite the softness, silk is a very strong material, but it still requires a lot of care! It loses its strength when wet or stretched, so make sure you treat your silk waistcoat with love.
Tweed is a rough fabric made from wool and with flecked colours, originally produced in Scotland. It is a very durable, warm material, and it is resistant to moisture. It is commonly used for outerwear, but tweed waistcoats are stylish, and great for wearing without a jacket. Tweed comes in a variety of colours and patterns, herringbone being a popular choice, with a V-shaped weaving pattern.
Brocade is a group of highly-decorative fabrics, made with coloured silks, and sometimes adorned with gold and silver threads. Brocade waistcoats are very popular in weddings, because they add embellishment to the garment, creating a unique piece of clothing. The fabrics used to make brocade varies, but the raised design or floral pattern is added during the weaving process.