This section is from the "A Complete Dictionary of Dry Goods" book, by George S. Cole. Also available from Amazon: A complete dictionary of dry goods and history of silk, cotton, linen, wool and other fibrous substances,: Including a full explanation of the modern processes ... together with various useful tables.
Challi (Shal'-I). A name originally given to a superior dress fabric of silk and wool, first manufactured at Norwich, England, in 1832. It was thin, fine and without gloss, but its chief characteristic was its absolute freedom from dressing. The name is now applied to an extremely lightweight dress fabric made of either cotton or wool, or a mixture, woven without twill, either plain or with printed figures. All-wool Challi does not differ essentially from the old fashioned muslin-delaine. Neither fabric wrinkles easily and both possess a cool, dainty look especially suited for the summer season. Most Challi patterns are copied from French silks, which in part accounts for their unusually tasteful designs and artistic effects.