Tutorial: How to Give Facings a Clean Finish

Facings are used to neatly finish arm, neck and front or back openings in place of full linings. Facings are great for finishing shaped hems, sleeve edges and waist lines and are often interfaced to add support and help maintain shaping. Also, facings cut down on fabric use when a full lining isn’t a necessity due to garment style or fabric choice.

There are several ways to finish the outer edge of facings for a neat look. A facings outer edge can be finished by serging, sewing a narrow hem, turn and zig zag , bias binding or trimming with pinking shears.  I have used them all over the years but my preferred method is to face my facings, giving a professional finish to the outer facing edge while at the same time adding interfacing.

The kind of interfacing used depends on the garment, fabric and facing location. For some applications a regular lining fabric could be used in place of interfacing. Facing a facing really is a quick and easy technique to use.  The example shown here is for a sleeveless Pocketful of Sunshine dress.

NOTE: For this example, a light weight sew in interfacing has been used. The same technique can be done using fusible interfacing. After turning(Step 5), carefully press around the seam edge. Next, following the manufacturers directions, finish pressing the remaining interfacing to the facing.

Step 1. Cut mirrored pairs of facings and interfacing.
1-facing-pieces-cut

Step 2. Right sides together, sew mirrored pairs of facing and interfacing. Trim seams and finger press open.
2-shoulder-and-underarm-seams

Step 3. Place a facing and interfacing piece right sides together and line up seams. Sew a scant 1/4 inch seam around outer edge.
3-interfacing-pinned-to-facing

Step 4.    Finger press seam allowance towards interfacing side.
4-interfacing-sewn-to-facing

Step 5.    Press facing flat as shown. Slightly roll interfacing to the back.
5-armscye-facing

Step 6. With right sides together, match and pin shoulder and underarm seams of facing and bodice. Finish pinning facing to bodice armscye and sew.
6-sew-sleeve-facing

Step 7. Under stitch facing and trim close to stitching line.
7-under-stitch-facing

Step 8.    Press facing to inside. Stitch in the ditch or hand stitch facings down at shoulder and underarm seams.
8-sleeveless-dress-facing

Clean finished neck and armscye facings inside Pocketful of Sunshine.

a IMG_2354

Deep neck facings like the one inside Pocketful of Sunshine are most often found in high end ready to wear clothing.

a IMG_2352

Duchess and Hare Pocketful of Sunshine pattern.

Learn more about when, where and what kind of interfacing to use.

Interfacing – Choosing the Right Type and Weight
A Handy Chart of Fusible and Sew-in Interfacings
International Interfacing/Stabilizer Comparison Chart

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