“Water resistant” and “waterproof” both refer to penetration of liquid water. Manufactured waterproof fabrics have been around for over a hundred years. They are either treated or are inherently resistant to water penetration and wetting. In Victorian times, Scottish inventor Charles Macintosh sandwiched rubber between cloth to make an impermeable fabric that was waterproof but not breathable. Raincoats were made from this material and became known as ‘macs’. However, the early designs smelled quite bad and melted in hot weather.
Next time you go to a theatre or concert, just imagine what might happen if a fire broke out on stage. In fact in any public place such as a shop, school, library, restaurant, hotel, council building or anywhere people gather together. Even in your own home there are risks of a fire breaking out, but don’t be too alarmed, there are many ways of minimising the damage and preventing flames and smoke from spreading. The obvious ones come to mind, such as fire doors and extinguishers etc, but perhaps less evidently, you can ensure that the fabrics and materials used are fire-retardant too.
There is a city in the southern Indian state of Kerala known as Kozhikode in the local Malayalam language. Colonised successively by the Arabs, Portuguese, Dutch, French and British, it is also perhaps better known outside India by its English name Calicut and is the place that gave its name to a variety of cotton known as calico. Calico is a fabric designed from unbleached cotton, using a plain weave and a low thread count.