[oh-ver-kas-ting, -kah-sting]

noun Sewing.

the act of sewing along the edges of material with long, spaced stitches to prevent raveling.
the stitch used to overcast.

Origin of overcasting

First recorded in 1880–85; overcast + -ing1


[adjective oh-ver-kast, -kahst, oh-ver-kast, -kahst; verb oh-ver-kast, -kahst, oh-ver-kast, -kahst; noun oh-ver-kast, -kahst]


overspread or covered with clouds; cloudy: an overcast day.
Meteorology. (of the sky) more than 95 percent covered by clouds.
dark; gloomy.
Sewing. sewn by overcasting.

verb (used with object), o·ver·cast, o·ver·cast·ing.

to overcloud, darken, or make gloomy: Ominous clouds began to overcast the sky.
to sew with stitches passing successively over an edge, especially long stitches set at intervals to prevent raveling.

verb (used without object), o·ver·cast, o·ver·cast·ing.

to become cloudy or dark: By noon it had begun to overcast.


Meteorology. the condition of the sky when more than 95 percent covered by clouds.
Mining. a crossing of two passages, as airways, dug at the same level, in which one rises to pass over the other without opening into it.Compare undercast(def 1).

Origin of overcast

1175–1225; Middle English (v.); see over-, cast
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for overcasting

Historical Examples of overcasting

  • The bottom edge of the waist may be finished by overcasting.

    Textiles and Clothing

    Kate Heintz Watson

  • The seams can be finished by overcasting the rough edges (see Fig. 28).

  • The overcasting stitch is used on edges to prevent raveling.

  • Sides, generally a selvage of two or three cords, but occasionally an overcasting.

    Oriental Rugs

    Walter A. Hawley

  • It was as if a shadow were overcasting the bright joy of her home-coming.

    The Rosie World

    Parker Fillmore

British Dictionary definitions for overcasting


adjective (ˈəʊvəˌkɑːst)

covered over or obscured, esp by clouds
meteorol (of the sky) more than 95 per cent cloud-covered
gloomy or melancholy
sewn over by overcasting

verb (ˌəʊvəˈkɑːst)

to make or become overclouded or gloomy
to sew (an edge, as of a hem) with long stitches passing successively over the edge

noun (ˈəʊvəˌkɑːst)

a covering, as of clouds or mist
meteorol the state of the sky when more than 95 per cent of it is cloud-covered
mining a crossing of two passages without an intersection
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for overcasting



c.1300, of weather, past participle adjective from verb overcast (early 13c.), "to overthrow," also "to cover, to overspread" as with a garment, usually of weather, from over- + cast (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper