To Line a Skirt or Not Line a Skirt...That is the Question

Thursday, November 13, 2014

KRISTINA J. Menzies plaid skirt | Gap shirt similar | Target Fair Isle sweater
FOSSIL Monica pumps | Old Navy bag similar

kristina j skirt kristina j midi skirt
kristina j design via Kristina J blog

Let's clear the air about skirt design.
I feel the best skirt designs include a lining. In fact, this plaid midi skirt has a lining, and I would personally pay more money for a lined skirt as opposed to an unlined one. I love being able to wear my skirts with tights in the winter and not have the fabric pull up and cling to my tights. It's also extremely liberating to eliminate the worry of having your slip hang awkwardly below the hem of your skirt (men have no idea what a bother that is, do they?). 

However, when it comes to the skirts I'll be designing for the KRISTINA J. Etsy store, COST OF GOODS is a huge concern. A lining is essentially a second skirt under the featured fabric and most lining fabrics can run as much as, if not more than the cost of the skirt fabric itself. To line a product skirt will double the price point of the skirt in COST OF GOODS, not to mention the extra labor time to stitch a lining.  
This is what it looks like when you evaluate COG's (cost of goods).


Lining a skirt increases both cost of goods and time in labor. This leaves little wiggle room for each skirt to also cover Etsy store fees and shipping, and eats into potential discounts offered to customers, which we'll cover in a later post. The same problem arises when I consider adding pockets (which I adore) to dresses and skirts. Extra fabric, extra labor time and the potential for more mistakes, which would translate into loss of profit.

Here's what I've decided for the products featured in the KRISTINA J. store. If I can get by without lining a skirt or dress, I will; but I will have deliberate qualifications for an unlined product.

To forgo a lining the product must:
1.   be constructed of a heavy enough fabric to hang properly and drape while wearing tights (this is especially important for fall/winter skirts.
2.  not be see-through.
3.  feel as pulled together and finished as a skirt with a lining would. 

With these qualification, it will be easier for me as I source fabrics to decide if a flannel fabric (like the skirt sample in this post) is worth offering in my Etsy store. I can ask myself, "Is a skirt in this adorably cozy fabric worth offering at a higher price point and is there a demand for such a product?"

I haven't decided yet whether the Menzies plaid skirt will be included in the first round of Etsy products. But should this flannel skirt appear in the store, you'll understand why it might be at a higher price point than other unlined products. Got me?

If you have an opinion concerning linings, feel free to share in the comments.


  1. I absolutely entirely agree with you about linings - so important! I even have a pair of pants slips (pantaloons? not sure what they're called) that I will wear under pants sometimes. I think you should sell lined skirts or sell the option, because that is definitely value-added, especially when you give a short explanation in the etsy description. It's dreadfully easy to buy cheap skirts with no lining!!! One of the reasons I sew my own skirts is so I can line them and avoid slips.

    1. Margo, I'm with you on purchasing skirts online expecting them to have a lining for the price and to be disappointed by the absence of one. I avoid slips as much as possible, but some skirts just don't work without one.

  2. So happy to hear you are having an etsy store! I like a lined skirt, too, if it is lined with something slippery. I have a couple of JCrew skirts that are lined with a cottony lining and I still have to wear a slip because they cling to my tights. They are probably supposed to be summer/spring skirts, but I like to mix and match and wear longer.......

    1. Me too! My favorite Anthropologie skirt is this awesome basic navy one that is lined in cotton, so I always have to wear a slip with it in winter if I want to style it with boots and tights.

  3. So excited to see you are opening an Etsy store!! I've just love everything that you make! I'm 100% with you on the lined skirts, and when they are/aren't needed. I practically always wear a half-slip under my skirts and dresses, but feel comfortable going without one when the fabric is heavier, not see-through, and doesn't stick to my tights. Can't wait to see what you have designed!

  4. You are always so creative and thrifty in these posts! I love this outfit!!!

  5. Yes! Please line the skirt. I have an awesome buffalo plaid flannel midi skirt that isn't lined and I would have paid double for it if it had a lining. One of my problems isn't that the slip is too long, but not long enough and my tights still stick to the few inches that the slip doesn't go down to:(
    I can't wait to for you to open your Etsy store....I'll take one of everything in size 0 please!

  6. love this post!


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