A process for making nonwoven fabric including the steps of meltspinning continuous multicomponent polymeric filaments, drawing the multicomponent filaments, at least partially quenching the multicomponent filaments so that the multicomponents have latent helical crimp, activating the latent helical crimp, and thereafter, forming the crimped continuous multicomponent filaments into a first nonwoven fabric web. By crimping the filaments before the web formation, shrinkage of the web after formation is substantially reduced and the resulting fabric is substantially stable and uniform. In addition, the resulting fabric can have a relatively high loft. The crimp activating step can include heating the multicomponent filaments and preferably includes drawing the multicomponent filaments with a flow of heated air to activate the latent helical crimp. The resulting fabric can form relatively high loft materials useful as a fluid management layer for personal care absorbent articles or can form cloth-like fabric useful as cover materials and garment material. In addition, a nonwoven fabric comprising continuous single and multicomponent filaments and process for making same are provided. Still further, a multilayer nonwoven fabric with continuous multicomponent filaments and process for making same are provided. The degree of crimp in the filaments can be varied from layer to layer to produce composite webs with particular fluid handling properties.