Ask the Addict: Panties with Cut Out or Open Backs?

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Toad Lillie Vamp High Waist Panty – $115

Today’s Ask the Addict feature comes from an anonymous Tumblr follower who writes,

“Hello! I am trying to find panties for my girlfriend, but I don’t have the vocabulary, so I figured I’d ask an expert. Is there a term for panties which have a shape cut out from the back, or fancy ties of bows and straps in the back (also framing shapes)?

She loves stuff like the blue-green Toad Lillie [Editor’s Note, October 2014: this shop has closed] panties you’ve posted. Do you have any similar suggestions? Thanks for any pointers you can give!”

Great question! Panties with open backs are called ouvert knickers (“ouvert” is French for open), and they’re really popular right now. Below are a few more knickers in that style; click the image to be taken directly to the shop.

Cora Harrington

Founder and Editor in Chief of The Lingerie Addict. I started TLA in a small studio apartment in 2008. Since then, it's become the leading lingerie blog in the world, and has been featured on the websites for Forbes, CNN, Time, Today, and Fox News. I believe lingerie is fashion too, and that every who wants it deserves gorgeous lingerie.

  • Petra

    Yes, please!

    As a boudoir photographer I see a lot of panties! When a pair of these come through my door I almost have to hold back a girlie squeal because they are so much fun to shoot! Thong-schmong, open back knickers are HOT!

  • Julian

    Tina Turner would claim that these knickers are simply the best and better than all the rest!

  • Ligeia

    Fantastic selection. The cendrillion has been on my “i-wish-i-was-rich” list for ages :)
    I was going to get the first ones but the shipping costs were 68 dollars!!! i died…


  • Thursday

    I own the Hips & Curves pair and they are brilliant. Very sexy and a lot comfier than I expected.

    Doesn’t “ouvert” also cover crotchless knickers? Such as the Playful Promises Dominique:

  • Louise

    We love ouvert knickers!! I’d also put Maison Close’s ‘Le Cul Nu’ (tr. the naked bum) knickers in this lot.

    They are three sets of unconnected black tulle bands, that create the illusion of a pair of ‘très ouvertes’ knickers

  • Trish

    When it hasn’t stopped raining in the UK for weeks the Toad Lillie and Tutti Frutti panties were just what was needed on a drab day….from a British lingerie lover blogger.

  • Elegy

    Yes, those are the types I myself prefer, the “ouvert” knickers that refer to those that expose the crotch in soe way. I’ve seen a few that I’ve loved, but in general the “butt cleavage” theme is not for me. I can appreciate the artistry.

  • Cynthia

    Super cute is what they are… and very provocative. It’s a great combination.

    • Treacle

      Thanks for stopping by! Do you own any ouvert knickers?

  • Sheen V

    I just love these panties!! Great post!

    • Treacle

      Good to see you, Sheen! :-)

  • Andrea

    I’ve always understood ‘ouvert’ to mean an open crotch, either tasteful as done by Agent Provocateur and others or not-so-tasteful where there’s really nothing at the crotch at all. What the questioner is referring to here I’d have called ‘open back’.

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