Lining and More

Lining and More

If you stopped someone on the street and asked them to explain the difference between all the different types of linings; as in lining, underlining and interlining, they would likely look at you as if you had grown two heads. However, we in the sewing world understand that each has its own purpose and adds unique elements to the garment. While constructing my Marfy 3219, I have utilized all three types of linings.

imageLining is the one layer most people on the street are acquainted with. It is often made of a slippery fabric and covers the inner construction  details. It usually hangs free, and may add warmth,  serve as a slip or make wearing a rough textured more comfortable. In my case, lining wool garments makes them easier to wear, since I’m allergic to wool.


Underlining is attached directly DSCN0382to the fashion fabric, and provides stability, pattern markings, and may reduce the sheerness or wrinkling of a fabric. Underlining is never seen, but you can feel it because it subtly changes the drape of the fabric, and makes it feel more substantial without adding bulk. Underlining is generally basted to the fashion fabric and the two are then treated as one piece during the construction process.It makes it possible to completely hide your hand stitches.

Interlining can be a little confusing. Its purpose is to add warmth to the garment without adding bulk, and it can be attached to the lining or to the underlining/fashion fabric. In my case, I attached the interlining to my lining pieces. image

A wonderful article to introduce you to all these linings in detail is available at Threads magazine.

This Marfy coat was my first try at underlining. I was sold after reading so much about it in Karen’s blog over at Fifty Dresses, and followed her advice, purchasing silk organza from Susan Khalje, which is some pretty amazing stuff! I had some cheap man-made organza, used previously for bound buttonholes, and the difference is quite astounding. I will continue to use the cheap stuff for buttonholes on my heavier garments, so it won’t go to waste, but I would never consider using it for underlining after experiencing the real thing!

My experience with underlining was pretty positive overall, any issues that I had were related to the lack of decent marking materials available in my home town. I finally resorted to tracing with a pencil, which is nerve racking and slow. My to do list for late fall is to find some really excellent quality tracing paper. If you have a favorite brand, please share!

I have attempted interlining once before, but I didn’t really do it correctly, and wanted to improve my effort with this coat. I purchased lambswool because bulk was an issue, and I must say, it is soft, airy, cozy, ahhh. The open weave captures air, which will then insulate the coat. I am quite excited to see just how warm this thing will be! I attached it to the lining with a simple baste, and seaming it all together was very straight forward. (It’s about time….there wasn’t a lot of straight forward in this coat…)

Though I’ve not spent much time on my coat recently, I did commit to completing two seams each day when I changed from the quilting foot back to the regular presser foot over the weekend. The result of that effort is a nearly complete lining. I’d planned to have a picture to share of it hanging, but when I got to the bottom of the pile, I discovered I had not cut the back piece, so I have one more round of marking and basting before it will be ready to hang. I’m glad to finally be thinking about finish work.



2 thoughts on “Lining and More

  1. Thank you, Kathy, for the mention of my blog! I enjoyed reading your overview of linings! You can purchase wonderfully large sheets of waxed marking paper from either Richard the Thread or from Susan Khalje. She sells it in a nice package of all the colors you need. I think you will like it – it is a staple in my sewing room.

    Liked by 1 person

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