Before the industrial revolution, all trim was made and applied by hand, making heavily trimmed furnishings and garments expensive and high-status. Machine-woven trims and sewing machines put these dense trimmings within the reach of even modest dressmakers and home sewers, and an abundance of trimming is a characteristic of mid-Victorian fashion. As a predictable reaction, high fashion came to emphasize exquisiteness of cut and construction over denseness of trimming, and applied trim became a signifier of mass-produced clothing by the 1930s. The iconic braid and gold button trim of the Chanel suit are a notable survival of trim in high fashion.
Today, most trimmings are commercially manufactured. Scalamandr is known for elaborate trim for home furnishings, and Wrights is a leading manufacturer of trim for home sewing and crafts.
Types of trimming include:
Embroidery by hand or machine
Lace edgings or insertions
Ruffles or frills