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School of Human
Environmental Sciences

102 Erikson Hall,
University of Kentucky
Lexington, KY
tel: (859) 257-3887

HomeRetailing and Tourism Management › Textile Testing Lab

Retailing and Tourism Management

Textile Testing Lab

Lab Washing MachinesThe Textile Testing Lab provides assistance to the textile and apparel industry through the development of high quality products, evaluation and/or development of specifications for an existing product, and/or evaluation of the end use performance of a product.  The lab also offers expert consultation to assist industry members with analyzing product failures.

The Textile Testing Lab operates under the direction of Elizabeth P. Easter, Ph. D., a professor and consultant for textiles and textile care.  Dr. Easter has over twenty five years of consulting and applied research experience.

The Textile Testing Lab provides research and laboratory technician experience to both graduate and undergraduate students who work as paid technicians under the direction of the laboratory supervisor and Dr. Easter.  The lab also provides funding for graduate student research assistants and the opportunity for students to conduct thesis research projects within the industry who gain experience in solving real word problems.

Projects include the Lion Apparel Label Study and Firefighter Durability studies.  These research projects are funded through a National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) grant.  The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has played a large role in the firefighter durability studies through their development of Standards on Protective Ensembles for Structural Fire fighting and Proximity Fire Fighting.  Tricia Hock completed the initial durability study on the Post-Use Evaluation of Fire Fighter's Turnout Coats in 1996.  In 2009, Deena Cotterill completed Phase I of the Post Use Analysis of Firefighter Turnout Gear Durability study followed by Stacy Trenkamp who completed Phase II of the study in 2011.  The research on firefighter durability continues in the lab with undergraduate research assistant Meredith Cinnamon.

On top of research projects, the Textile Testing lab performs basic textile testing and is equipped to evaluate textile properties including physical properties, chemical properties, and product failures.  Tests are conducted in using standardized test methods developed by ASTM, AHAM, AATCC, NFPA, IEC & ISO.

Extensive product testing and research projects are conducted for companies including General Electric, Lion Apparel Inc., Louisville Bedding and the Clothes Care Research Center (

The Textile Testing lab provides a ‘Test Piece' service to the Association for Linen Management (ALM) and offers special product testing for members of this organization.  ALM has provided contract funding for the lab since 1988.

Textile Test Performed

MeasuringFabric Construction Analysis:

• Thread Count
• Weave Identification
• Fabric Weight





Physical Properties:Bursting Test

• Tensile Strength
• Bursting Strength
• Tear Strength
• Fabric Thickness
• Fiber Content







Performance testsPerformance Characteristics:

• Dimensional Change
• Smoothness Appearance
• Colorfastness to Crocking
• Soil Release




Product Analysis:Product Analysis

• Color Measurements
• Whiteness Index
• Chemical Damage
• Chlorine Retention
• Stain Identification & Removal
• Light Degradation Testing






Piling TestingMiscellaneous Testing:

• Light Degradation Testing
• Microscopic Evaluations
• Pilling (Nu Martindale)
• Surface Abrasion







Test Request Process

Parties interested in submitting a product to the lab for evaluation should phone or email the request to contact below.


Textile Testing Laboratory
Attn: Dr. Elizabeth Easter
318 Erikson Hall
University of Kentucky
Lexington, KY 40506

Phone: (859) 257-7777
Fax: (859) 257-1275

University of Kentucky, College of Agriculture, An Equal Opportunity University
Copyright 2011, Questions/Comments - Last Updated: March 13 2013 14:51:04