Many have asked if it is all right to wear a garment made of mixed fabrics. They wonder about the meaning of Leviticus 19:19 and Deuteronomy 22:11.
Notice that these scriptures contain the basic principle that materials of widely different character and texture are not to be mixed together. But many do not realize that these verses do allow a number of mixtures and combinations that are within God's laws. Let's understand what they are. There are two basic kinds of natural fibers from which today's garments are made. The first is plant cellulose fiber. It produces fabrics such as linen and cotton. The second is animal protein fiber. Materials such as wool and silk arc in this category. Because these two basic kinds of fibers differ markedly in strength, wash ability, absorption, etc., they should not be mixed. However, a garment made of various combinations of cellulose material — for example, a mixture of cotton and linen — is acceptable since it is a combination of fibers which are basically similar. Likewise, garments made from a mixture of protein fibers such as wool, mohair, silk, etc., are all right. Another part of this question concerns the mixture of synthetic, manmade fabrics such as dacron, nylon, polyester, rayon, etc., with either cellulose or protein fibers. Unknown to many, a garment made from a combination of synthetic and either cellulose or protein material does not break the above principle. This is because today's synthetic materials are made to have essentially the same characteristics of the natural fibers they are combined with. They would not mix properly if they were not made this way. Thus, the resulting fabric from such combinations is acceptable since it is a mixture of essentially like rather than dissimilar fibers. However, it should also be noted that such combinations produce a cheaper garment quality — wise than one made with the best grade of pure fabric. On the other hand, a garment made from low-grade natural fibers is usually improved by the addition of compatible man-made fibers. Such mixtures enable the manufacturer to use a cheap grade of wool or cotton by fortifying it with a cheap man-made fiber. Far too often, the motivation for such combinations stems from the greed for profit. Any good tailor knows that the best quality clothing is made from 100 percent wool, cotton, etc. Nevertheless, one need not throw away or destroy clothing which may be of a poor quality or wrung mixture. Such materials are NOT sin in themselves. Rather, God does not want a manufacturer to produce shoddy materials and take advantage of his customers. A wise principle to follow in purchasing either a pure or mixed garment is to purchase the best quality you can afford for yourself and your family. We honor God in what we wear. Cheap imitations (both in character and wearing apparel) that appear to be genuine do not honor God! So remember, be a quality Christian and buy the best quality clothing you can afford! But don't go deeply into debt buying better quality than you can afford. That's not being genuine either!