About Silk Momme Weight

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Mommes (mm) are units of weight traditionally used to measure the surface density of silk. It is akin to the use of thread count to measure the quality of cotton fabrics, but is calculated in a very different manner. Instead of counting threads, the weight in mommes is a number that equals the weight in pounds of a piece of silk if it were sized 45 inches by 100 yards. This is because the standard width of silk is 45 inches wide, though silk is regularly produced in 55-inch widths, and, uncommonly, in even larger widths. Silk can also be measured by weight in grams. 1 momme = 4.340 grams per square meter; 8 mommes is close to 1 ounce per square yard or 35 grams per square meter. The usual range of momme weight for different weaves of silk are:

Habutai – 5 to 16 mm
Chiffon – 6 to 8 mm (can be made in double thickness, i.e. 12 to 16 mm)
Crepe de Chine – 12 to 16 mm
Gauze – 3 to 5 mm
Organza – 4 to 6 mm
Charmeuse – 12 to 40 mm

The higher the weight in mommes, the more durable the weave, and the more suitable it is for heavy-duty use. And, the heavier the silk, the more opaque it becomes. This can vary even between the same kind of silk. For example, lightweight charmeuse is translucent when used in clothing, but 30-momme charmeuse is opaque.

The lower the weight in mommes, the easier to wrinkle and shrink. So it is the trends to use higher weight mommes even it is much more expensive.
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