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.
Satin Duchess. A name applied to a heavy grade of silk dress fabric. It is woven with a grain so fine that it does not produce a grain effect, but partakes more of the nature of a perfectly close and plain weave, the surface being apparently composed of minute elevations and depressions, or nicked similar to peau de soie, but having more luster. Originally satin duchess was a thick and generally a plain satin, of good quality, usually in black colors without pattern.