Ticking fabric was a thick heavy fabric traditionally used to keep feathers in pillows and straw in matresses. The close weave makes it difficult for the feathers to push through the fabric.
It has an instantly recognisable stripe, which looks perfect as a bedspread, on cushions, upholstered onto a chair or even as a rug on the floor.
A good ticking fabric will feel stiff initially, although it will soften with time. Generally speaking, the stiffer the fabric, the higher the quality. Due to the close weave it makes an excellent heavy duty fabric, practical enough for any family.
When I see a ticking stripe, it conjures up memories of Summer holidays in Devon, the taste of sea salt, and the sounds of crashing waves.