Knowledge Habotai (or habutai) means ‘soft as down’ in Japanese and is a lightweight and soft silk fabric originally woven for kimonos.
Traditionally, habotai silk was made on hand looms in Japan. But as times have changed, so have the production methods – with most habotai made in factories in Japan, Korea and China. The natural material is often compared to ‘China silk’, but it is slightly heavier and often left a natural ecru colour that embraces the slight imperfections in the silk yarns. Meaning ‘soft as down’ in Japanese, habotai is a lightweight and soft fabric that was originally crafted for use in kimonos. These days, the thin and cool material is woven for jacket linings, dresses, blouses, nightgowns, and scarves because of its supple hand feel and smooth, plain weave.