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Cinderella Didn’t Wear Cotton to the Ball

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Next time you dress your heroine for a ball, you may want to describe her gown in terms of its lightness and delicacy. Here are some nouns and adjectives for the job.

chiffon n. – a diaphanous plain-woven fabric of fine hard-twisted yarn

diaphanous adj. – permitting the free passage of light and vision; perfectly transparent; pellucid.

filmy adj. – resembling a film, of extremely delicate texture, gauze-like; consisting of slender filaments, as of gossamer.

gauzy adj. – of the nature of, or resembling, gauze. gauze n. a very thin, transparent fabric of silk, linen, or cotton.

gossamer – n. a fine filmy substance, consisting of cobwebs, spun by small spiders, which is seen floating in the air in calm weather, esp. in autumn, or spread over a grassy surface; gossamer adj. light and flimsy as gossamer.

insubstantial – not existing in substance or reality; not real; imaginary, illusive; non-substantial.

lace  Рa slender open-work fabric of linen, cotton, silk, woollen, or metal threads, usually ornamented with inwrought or applied patterns.

organdy – a fine but stiff, translucent kind of muslin. NOTE: organdy is a see-through fabric, but not something to dress your heroine if you like her. It is really scratchy.

sheer – adj. – thin, fine, diaphanous.

silky – adj. having the delicate softness of silk.

translucent – through which light passes

wispy  Р consisting of or resembling a wisp or wisps. wisp Рa handful, bunch, or small bundle (of hay, straw, grass, etc.).

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2 thoughts on “Cinderella Didn’t Wear Cotton to the Ball”

  1. That’s a great list of descriptive words for translucent materials – but hopefully most stories written today are not as insubstantial and diaphanous as princess-goes-to-ball.

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