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Lining a bias skirt

lizabeth | Posted in General Sewing Info on

I have just bought a gorgeous lightweight white linen skirt. Adored wearing it until my sister suggested that it was a bit too see through. Don’t you love sisters! And she is probably right. The skirt has three tiers, all cut on the bias. Below the yoke/basque is a tier cut so that its lower seam makes a diagonal line with the main body of the skirt which therefore hangs from a seam that varies from 8″ to 12″ below the waist.

What would you suggest to line the skirt.
Cotton batiste? I don’t want anything that won’t breathe.
From which seam do I hang it?…Would just covering the lower tier make the middle one hang funny?

I guess I cut the lining on the bias hand stitch on, it let it drop and then hem it. Or do I hem it before stitching it.
I want to be able to wear it again and I still think that it looks great on as long as I dont think about its transparency.

Any help gratefully recieved.


  1. FitnessNut | | #1

    You could do as you suggest and cut a bias lining. Can you hang it from the waist so that its drape doesn't affect the hang of the skirt at all?

    I'm tempted to suggest a rather old-fashioned idea.....why don't you consider wearing a half slip? Simple to make if you can't find one in a store. Its an inexpensive, hassle-free alternative to a lining.

  2. solosmocker | | #2

    I would recommend a flesh colored fabric. This will really eliminate show thru.

  3. stitchmd | | #3

    I totally agree on a slip, plus you can wear it with lots of other things.

    1. lizabeth | | #4

      Thanks everyone,
      Slips....I call them petticoats I have ...BUT they do not breathe like cotton or linen and it gets pretty hot here. Also I love the way this, my first ever bias cut garment swirls and falls in lovely folds and I sort of want to try...if it is feasible to keep that feeling of freedom...bother sisters!......

      1. stitchmd | | #5

        You can use a very fine cotton, such as batiste, and even cut it on the bias, to make a slip.

        1. Josefly | | #6

          The skirt described sounds beautiful. Are you thinking of tiering the lining as well? Otherwise the only reason I can think of for a lining instead of a slip is if the top of the skirt doesn't reside at the waist, but below it, in which case an elastic-waist slip would show. Cotton is not as slippery as synthetic fabrics, of course, and doesn't let the fashion-fabric slide over it as well; silk might be better if that's an issue. But a slip or lining less full than the skirt will allow the skirt fabric to move, I think.
          I second (or third) the batiste half-slip idea. I made for myself two bias batiste half-slips, in different lengths, from a Kwik-Sew pattern that includes two styles of camisoles. I wear them often in the summer with skirts that are a little too see-through for me, in the humid summer heat of Atlanta, Ga., and they are fabulous - virtually unnoticeable. Like you, I prefer cotton and linen against my skin in the heat.

          Edited 1/31/2006 1:08 pm ET by Josefly

  4. mem | | #7

    I would just wear skin tone underwear and enjoy the frisson of it being a little tranparent . I bet your legs are better than hers anyway!!!!!!

    1. lizabeth | | #8

      Thanks everyone. I've made a trip to the city and checked out some high end bias skirts. They were lined with either a bias or 'A' lining, Handling the different types of fabric used gave me some great clues.Definitely not cotton batiste!! . A lingerie shop I enquired at for a bias slip could give me no help and it was suggested that I line the skirt instead! What a sign of the times. Next trip I hope to get to a fabric shop to find a decent lining and then I will construct my first ever bias slip. I plan on using a skirt pattern for that.I am getting back into sewing again. I loved making my childrens clothes over a decade ago but even then found sewing for myself a challenge fitting wise. What amazes me now is the fact that even though I wear straight a size 12(Australian) my 'mature' measurements put me up into size 18 and 20 patterns. Reading Threads kept up my interest in sewing. But now, as I try and put my ideas into practice I am finding the support that I desperately need here


  5. jennys | | #9

    Just a suggestion - why not make an A-line slip or lining to mid thigh level, so it covers your underwear, but you can flash your legs at your sister.

    1. xstpenguin | | #10

      Silk would be the ideal choice - nothing like a touch of luxury where it doesn't show!

      However, if cost is an issue Viscose/Rayon has the same chemical properites as cotton, although a man-made fibre it starts it's life as wood pulp, so is breathable and can be very comfortable.

      Bemberg Cupro (another type of Viscose) is slightly more expensive, but is a lovely fabric for a lining - I have trousers lined in it and they are both washable and extremely comfortable.

      Good luck!

  6. mimi | | #11


    If you are set on lining the skirt, I would use a cotton batiste fabric and cut it as you did the original skirt.  Do not cut out an attach a waistband in batiste.  Undo your original waistband but do not remove it from the skirt (i.e. open it up instead); attach the inner lining to the waistband of the skirt.  Reclose your waistband.  The inner lining will hang free and won't cling to your legs.  You might want to cut/hem it a bit shorter than the skirt, in case it "grows" after several wearings.

    It would really be easier to wear a cotton slip, but I realize some people just don't like them (I'm pretty sure my own daughter doesn't even own one)!  Good luck and happy wearing!


  7. user-7257885 | | #12

    A fairly reasonable source for silk is http://www.thaisilks.com.  You will LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the way that silk feels on your legs - I am a fiber artist painting on silk with dyes and sell alot of silk crepe sarongs.  The thing that "gets me" everytime I wear it is just how wonderful it feels on the back of your legs! 

    Try it - you'll LOVE it!

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