Steelcloth is a microfine metal mesh, delicate and beautiful like silk, but far stronger than it looks. Constructing steelcloth requires a good deal of fine, precise work; while it is possible for steelcloth to be handcrafted, in more modern times it is fabricated by machinery.
Steelcloth typically appears to be a grey, slightly shiny, normal piece of cloth. It is notably heavier than a similar-size piece of normal cloth. Steelcloth does not hold color well.
Steelcloth was discovered by the lunari, who used it extensively in their formulation of ninjitsu - it allowed a ninja to be far more armed and armored than he appeared.
In more recent times, the technologically-inclined have found a wide variety of uses for steelcloth: it is incredibly pliable, yet resilient, making it an excellent material for belts in machinery (since it doesn't break as easily as standard cloth, and is less prone to damaging gears and cogs as chains). Steelcloth is also relatively common for nobles, as they can be armored without appearing to be so.
Handmaking steelcloth requires a few hundred strands of steel, all hair-thin, depending upon the length and width of the cloth to be produced. A jacquard loom is greatly helpful in constructing steelcloth, and was the primary method of fabricating steelcloth in most lands prior to industrialization. The steel strands are then woven together to form a simple cloth, much like linen or wool is woven to form cloth. Individual pieces of steelcloth can be sewn together, though this requires more effort than sewing together other types of cloth.