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Armhole & Neck Facings vs. Lining

LindaFaye | Posted in General Discussion on

I am about to make a dress and the pattern calls for a full lining.  I just want a nice breezy summer dress and don’t want to line it, however I don’t trust myself to make (draft) facings to fit it.  I am thinking about just using a matching single fold bias tape.

Do you think the bias tape will work instead of facings? OR can anyone tell me how to draft arm and neck facings??????????????




  1. marijke | | #1

    Last time I checked, a lot of RTW was using narrow bias facings especially around the armholes. 

    For facings, you can use your regular pattern.  Place some transparent paper over it and trace the seamlines of the neck and/or armhole (make sure you transfer any notches or other markings), then draw another line the desired with of your facing (check some old patterns for widths you like, I think they're often somewhere around 2 - 2 1/2 inches wide).

    Instead of separate armhole and neckline facings, you might also try making  a facing that connects the armhole and neckline facing into one.  This is less likely to peek out when you are wearing the dress.   It helps to draft the armhole and neckline facings as above and then draw a gentle curve to connect them at the bottom end of the facing.  At the shoulder, they width for the armhole and neckline are likely to over lap already.

    Alternatively, you could line the bodice in a very lightweight cotton batiste or lawn.

    Hope this is understandable,


    1. LindaFaye | | #2


      Thank you very much for your answer this was V-E-R-Y helpful and and your instructions were very clear.  I am thankful that I found this site, cause everytime I have a question someone out there comes to my rescue!  This time it was you....many thanks!


    2. LindaFaye | | #3

      Just wanted to let you know that I got my facings made!  I searched around the house and found some actual tracing paper and used that as you said.  I have them cut out and now will interface them and see if I can get them sewn in.  I think I like the idea of the facings vs bias tape for the dress, but still may go ahead and and line it.  Still undecided, but at least now I do know how to make facings for a pattern that doesn't have them - THANKS TO YOU!

      1. User avater
        Becky-book | | #4

        If you do decide to line it, you may not need to wear a slip too and that makes for comfort, IMHO.


        1. LindaFaye | | #6

          I am in the process of fully lining the dress, don't like slips at all any more.  I do have some but haven't worn one in ages.  What does IMHO mean???

          1. Cherrypops | | #8

            Linda, I know IMHO as:


            In My Holy Opinion


            In My Honest Opinion


            In My Humble Opinion

            I took Becky's post as Honest and Humble. but that's just me, Becky may have meant something entirely different.


          2. User avater
            Becky-book | | #9

            Cherrypops has more info than me!

            I mean In My Humble Opinion

            sorry for any confusion


          3. Cherrypops | | #10

            Thanks for that becky.

      2. marijke | | #5

        Glad you found my info helpful.  I cannot really take credit for the idea: I sometimes get copies of a Dutch pattern magazine (Knip) that has trace-out patterns (like Burda) and they provide the facings in this manner.  (The drawback of this magazine versus Burda is that the instructions in Knip are in Dutch only.)

        I agree that lining is also useful, as Becky suggests.  It really is a matter of preference.  I am about to make a little summer top that I think I will line because the fabric is sort of gauzy and has a silver thread woven in.  Both the see-through factor and the possible scratchiness of the lurex (silver) make me think lining in batiste might be worthwhile for this top.  For a casual summer top in a denser, soft fabric I might not line it.  But, as I said, this is a matter of individual preference.

        Happy sewing!


        1. LindaFaye | | #7

          Marijke, you can go ahead and take the credit!  You were a big help to me in my time of need.  I took your suggestion about using the batiste lining (and at least now I know what batiste is).    I did draft the facings, but didn't trust my drafting enough to to use them - maybe next time.  At least now I know how to go about doing it, and I know I will use this knowledge again at a later date and probably be successful with it.   I've got the lining made and now need to attach it.  Maybe I'll post a picture of my dress here when it is finished to let you see my finished work.

          I'm just really getting back into sewing after a long, long (many year) break.  I want to do well, and sometimes I don't trust my judgement, but I figure if I keep trying I will one day be satisfied with what I make.  Thanks

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