To make a bias cut essentially means to cut the pattern piece from the fabric on a 45 degree angle to the straight grain so that the fabric will drape and contour with the shape of the body. To put it simply – the fabric is cut on a diagonal angle rather than along a fold line. Garments such as skirts, dresses, blouses and capes are perfect garments for sewing on the bias to achieve a beautiful drape! When cut on the bias, woven fabric is more fluid when it moves with the body, compared to an on-grain direction. A true bias is 45 degrees from the warp or weft.
Working on the Bias:
A very informative video from Seamwork
The brilliant folks at Seamwork explain all about sewing on the bias, and discuss why bias-cut garments are special, how to cut your pattern pieces on the bias, and how you can stabilize to prevent stretching, as well as discuss the best sewing patterns to use.
Madeleine Vionnet who was a French fashion designer, aka the “Queen of the bias cut” and “the architect among dressmakers”, is best known today for engineering/innovating the bias cut garment and her elegant Grecian-style dresses. She is best known for popularizing the bias cut within the fashion world and is credited with inspiring a number of recent designers. [more here]
Seven Excellent Tips for Sewing on the Bias:
Mimi G shares her seven best tips for cutting, pressing, and sewing fabric on the bias to save you hours of sewing frustration!
Listen to what Mimi has to say about STAY STITCHING when working on the bias!
Sewing a Basic A-line Skirt on the Bias with Angela Wolf:
Fashion designer and online instructor Angela Wolf shows the first variation of the basic A-line skirt. She demonstrates how to cut the pattern on the bias. She uses Brother International Corporation’s THE Dream Machine® 2 sewing machine to stitch thin seam allowances allowing the skirt to drape beautifully without looking lumpy.
Listen to what Angela says about HEMMING ON THE BIAS.