Updated at: 04-08-2022 - By: Sienna Lewis

Have you ever pondered the cause of the twist in your pant legs or the lack of give in your waistband? Yes, it’s finally possible. Perhaps you’ve looked at a design and wondered, “What do those markings mean?” If you follow this advice, you’ll end up exactly where you want to be. Whether you’re working with wovens or stretch knits, understanding the function of grainlines is essential.

What Is Grainline?

Let’s start with a definition of grainline. The grainline is the horizontal or vertical direction of the threads in a fabric. What really counts is the direction of the threads. It is essential that you comprehend how the method of cutting a piece impacts the final product of the garment. That’s going to be the topic of an upcoming blog post.

Crosswise Grainline

When weaving, the thread that runs perpendicular to the selvages is called the weft. The weft is also commonly referred to as the across grainline in the textile business. When buying fabric from a retailer, you should always cut against the grainline. If you’re sewing with knits, this one gives the most.

Lengthwise Grainline

Threads that are woven in a direction perpendicular to the selvage are called warp. The Lengthwise Grainline is a more generic term for the warp (LG). The threads are sewn into the fabric throughout its width.

True Bias

An additional Grainline has been thrown in for free. This is known as “True Bias.” The word refers specifically to diagonal grainlines. A 45-degree angle separates the weft from the warp. Therefore, the woven fabric is elastic. Bias also causes an unusual stretch when a woven design is trimmed and resewn in the opposite direction.

To emphasize a certain design element, the pattern may be trimmed on the bias. The capacity of the cloth to relax after being cut in this manner gives garments created from it a more voluptuous drape. This is best demonstrated by the Sojourner Bias Dress. Having it trimmed on the bias will give it that much more pizzazz.

For the sake of simplification into a single image, Three grains on a fabric can be aligned in the following ways:

That’s a lot of money to be sure.

Why It Is Important To Follow The Grainline Of The Fabric In Cutting?

Keep your blade along the grainline of the fabric as you cut. By referring to the template, you can determine where and how much material to cut. Many different uses can be made of materials with different grainline orientations.

So what is bias grain?

The bias of an item is the direction of its grain that runs perpendicular to its length. The direction of the grain gives the fabric a lot of give.

Why is a grainline so important in sewing?

Crosswise yarns are less durable than the yarns that run the length of the fabric. With their weight on the body, they drape and fall more gracefully. Compared to the crosswise ones, they are more flexible.

Crosswise yarns are less durable than the yarns that run the length of the fabric. With their weight on the body, they drape and fall more gracefully. Compared to the crosswise ones, they are more flexible.

You should expect less wear and tear from the cloth if the strands are woven lengthwise rather than across it. Affixed to the human form, they fall and drape with greater elegance. Compared to the across ones, they are more flexible.

In general, the strength of a fabric depends more on its lengthwise yarns than on its across ones. When worn, they fall and drape more beautifully due to their added mass. When compared to the transverse ones, they offer greater adaptability.

How Do You Find The Grainline On Fabric?

Straight grainline

  1. While it may save money to cut the dress lengthwise rather than diagonally, you should be aware that this can cause the garment to sag and stretch in potentially uncomfortable places like the armpits and hems. Unfortunately, there are times when the final result is less than desirable. What a terror!
  2. Although it could save money to cut the dress lengthwise instead of diagonally, you should be aware that this could result in the dress being too loose across the chest and legs. There will be times when the final output is less than desirable. Oh, the horror!
  3. Move horizontally over the fabric with a needle and thread until you locate an opening, and then cut it.
  4. The selvages of off-grain fabric don’t meet in the middle when the cloth is folded in half lengthwise.

Cross grainline

  1. You have discovered that a crosswise thread was used to cut the fabric.
  2. Fold the fabric in half lengthwise and align the raw edges.
  3. To avoid the appearance of wrinkles around the centerfold, you should only choose fabric that is in-grain.

Additional suggestions for locating the grainline

  • If there is no selvage, the longitudinal yarn will be stronger but the transverse one will break more quickly.
  • It is more practical to rip fabric in the direction of its length rather than its width.
  • The length of the across yarn is greater than that of the lengthwise yarn.

So do knit fabric have a grain?

Knit fabric still has a grain, but it looks different from the usual grain. Those who knit call this “direction.” Knit fabric displays visible loops. Realizing the grain, or the thread’s natural direction, is just as crucial as it is when working with woven materials. It is the position of the loops in a knitted fabric that determines the fabric’s preferred orientation. They are laid out at right angles to one another, as opposed to the parallel orientation of knitted fabrics. They are laid out in courses and wales, with the latter orientation providing the greater overall length. You may do this by simply stretching the fabric to see how much it gives.


Do you find this article to be informative? What is the grainline of sewing? It is the direction of the threads that make up the weaving. It’s important to be able to identify the cloth in multiple dimensions when you cut it for each stitching step.