Updated on October 7, 2022 by Sarina Tariq
An opening is there for a closure in your garment – How is that for an Oxymoron! But so true for the openings used in sewing. These are openings sewn on garments that allow easy putting on and removal and to close the garment with the many fasteners available to you.
You will find many kinds of openings used along necklines, sleeve hems, waistbands of pants and skirts – categorized depending on how they are finished or what kind of fastener is used for closure.
A general guideline for openings is gender specific – Women’s garment openings are closed from right to left; Men’s from left to right.
Related post: Different kinds of fasteners used in sewing.
1. Faced opening
This most favorite kind of opening is sewn with a facing fabric – a facing is a fabric piece sewn along the edge of the opening and then flipped to the back side. It is understitched to the seam allowance there so that the facing flips easily to the back. The facing is hemmed to the back to keep it in place or left as it is after finishing its edges
A bias cut fabric is usually used for making the facing. This kind of finishing is mostly used for armhole openings, waistlines and necklines. Learn how to sew facings here
2. Placket opening
This opening has a placket sewn along the opening to make the opening bigger. A slit is made along the opening and two fabric pieces are joined along the slit to make this opening. This type of Plackets is used along sleeve cuffs, necklines of polo shirts etc. Another way is to make a full open placket – to make this placket add extra fabric along the edge and then fold it to the inside and make a full opening as seen in a shirt.
The plackets usually have buttons as fasteners
- How to sew buttons
- How to sew buttonholes with a sewing machine
- How to sew buttonhole by hand
- 8 types of buttonholes you can stitch
- How to sew hooks and eye
- How to sew button loops – 3 ways.
3. Hemmed opening
This finishing used in the opening is the simplest. The edge around the opening is folded twice quite narrowly and then stitched. This opening is quite delicate and is used for openings without much strain-Like that of a baby dress or armscye of a sleeveless dress
4. False placket opening
This opening has a fake placket. There will be no big opening as in the case of a placket opening because the placket is all for a show.
5. Bias Bound opening
A bound opening uses bias cut fabric strips to bind the fabric edges of the opening. This finishing is usually seen in tops, dresses, blouses etc.
6. Fly Opening
This opening is seen in pants. jeans, shorts and sometimes on skirts. The fly openings usually have a zipper fastener and sometimes buttons and buttonholes. The buttonholes will be placed across horizontally
7. Seam opening
This opening is placed in the seam – usually, this is seen in fitted garments, like close fitting gowns. The waist seam will have an opening which can be fastened with a zipper, usually invisible zipper. A seam opening is also placed in the shoulder seam.
8. Overlapped opening
The kind of opening seen in wrap dresses. One side of the garment will overlap the other side and this is then tied using sashes or ties.
9. Back opening
The opening seen in the back of dresses – could be a full opening or a half opening with button closures or zippers.
10. Gathered opening
A gathered opening is gathered with a drawstring, ties or elastic