The word “canvas” is derived from the 13th century Anglo-French canevaz and the Old French canevas. Both may be derivatives of the Vulgar Latin cannapaceus for “made of hemp,” originating from the Greek κάνναβις (cannabis).

Some other benefits of canvas fabric are:

1. Waterproof and Windproof

It is so tightly woven during manufacturing that it has an amazing waterproof quality, which is often increased by waterproofing treatments at the end of the manufacturing process. This is why, it is used in many outdoor fabric applications. In some instances, after treatments, it is even qualified as “marine grade” and used as a sail making material. Canvas is windproof, which is another factor that facilitates its use as sails and awning fabric.

2. Sturdy

Besides being water and windproof, canvas is a sturdy fabric that does not produce frequent stress or tugs. For this reason, it is often used in tent and awning construction, as well as the basis for several kinds of shoe.

3. Accept Treatments

One of the major advantages of canvas is that it readily accepts a range of chemical treatment to improve its natural properties, including treatments to increase flame retardation, water resistance, and mildew resistance. Treated canvas are long lasting while requiring little maintenance as compared to many other fabrics.

Adapted from Canwil Textiles.