Habotai, from the Japanese for “soft as down”, is a lustrous, lightweight plain weave silk fabric. Silk habotai is often referred to as "China silk", as the majority of the material is currently woven there using delicate, hand-reeled silk. Light as a feather while possessing the same shine and silken feel of its heavier cousins, silk habotai fabric is several steps above inferior polyesters which may confusingly carry the “China silk” moniker as well.
Silk habotai can be used specifically as a lining fabric, but it is also extensively found in anything that calls for a very light, silken feel, including summer blouses, lingerie and bedding. Habotai is also very well-known as a fantastic surface for painting, and is ideal for sewing beginners due to its smooth surface. The fabric is hand-washable in cold water, but dry cleaning is recommended.