How to Draft a Facing

How do you draft your own facings?

This tutorial outlines how to draft a shaped facing for a neckline, however, the same principle can be applied to armholes or openings. It is a technique that I have used in my pattern for the Balmain inspired dress.Make it: Sew a Balmain Inspired Knit Dress

If you want to know more about the different types of facings and why we use then visit:What are Facings And Why Do We Use Them?

Why do I need to know how to draft my own facing?

This is a useful technique to know in case you want to draft your own pattern or adapt an existing pattern. For example, you may want to remove the sleeves from a dress and use an armhole facing instead or you may just prefer to use one in place of a lining or bias binding.

What you need:

  • Ruler
  • French Rule (optional)
  • Tracing Paper
  • Pattern
  • Pencil

So no fancy equipment at all which is always nice!


  • First of all you need to choose your pattern and decide which area you want to apply the facing to. I will be making a facing for my neckline.

  • Lay a sheet of tracing paper over the top of the neckline. Sketch the shape of the neckline on to the paper. Draw from the centre front through to the shoulder line.

  • Draw a straight line from each end, this should match up with the centre front and the shoulder seam. Make the line the length that you want the facing to be. I decided I wanted mine to be 7 cm. Make sure the facing is shorter than the width of the shoulder seam, you don’t want the it poking through the armhole.

  • Mark a range of points that are 7 cm (or your desired length) from the neckline edge of the facing.

  • Join these markers using a French rule to make your facing. This will give a smooth curve. You could always try doing this by free hand if you do not have a French rule.

  • Cut out your piece.
  • This should be repeated for the back neckline.

That is it! It is really simple to do so give it a go!