Terylene is the first polyester fabric ever produced. The substance was patented in 1941 by its British inventors, John Rex Whinfield and James Dickson. Initially it was kept secret and used to develop materials during World War II.
Terylene was exhibited to the Imperial Chemical Industries in 1946, and by 1948 the first polyester lace curtains were commercially available. It quickly became a very popular fabric because of its versatility. Terylene requires little time and effort to clean. In addition, polyester combines well with natural fibers, such as cotton. This winning combination make fabrics both easy to care for and comfortable.