Cutting on the Bias


October 6, 2013 by Ville Raivio

Cutting fabric on the bias requires a woven cloth. The bias is the point at 45 degrees to its weft and warp thread, of which woven fabrics have two. They have more elasticity and give on the bias, but cutting a fabric this way leads to more wasted cloth, is more difficult to work with, and demands more time and effort.  Due to this fine give and drape, bias-cut cloths are often used on streamlined skirts and naughty dresses. Fine artisanal masters of neckwear will also see this extra effort as well as some tailors and shirtmakers, particularly on the shoulder area for increased movement. Finished clothes usually have more give diagonally than horizontally. If a tie, shirt or whathaveyou stretches more horizontally than diagonally, then it was cut on the bias and likely more trouble was seen in the make. Not mandatory, but a nice little add for the owner as well as a challenge for the maker.


For some nice bias for the bias, do have a look at The Renaissance Tailor’s fine article. For a balanced view, head over to Cutterandtailor’s forum.


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