Ring Around a New Collar


img_0684So, I thought I would give something new a try. In an attempt to add some variation to my sewing and my wardrobe, I decided to make me a shirt with a two piece collar like on a man’s dress shirt. After cutting out the shirt, I sewed the front and back of the top pieces of the collar together, turned, and ironed. Next I stitched the front and back of the bottom pieces of the collar together, with the top part sandwiched in and turned and ironed again. After sewing the plackets for the buttons, I sewed the back of the bottom piece of the collar to the shirt. And here is when the “fun” began. I then pressed the seam up, flipped the collar up and tried to “stitch in the ditch” to complete the collar. This worked great on the back of the collar, but when it came to the front points, I had a mess on my hands. I had no control trying to get the edge of the placket flush with the edge of the bottom collar pieces. There was just too much bulk in the seam allowances to keep it folded and flush. I sewed, unpicked, sewed, unpicked and so on until the fabric was starting to give up, so I called it good. I put it together the best I could and used plenty of fray check on the points. 

After this experience I was a little frustrated so the next time I was at Wal-mart, I took a look at men’s shirts. The collars and plackets were all flush and nicely sewn. So, I knew I had to come up with another way to put my collars on. My first thought was to put the collar on the same way as before but just do more iron prep before attaching the collar. If I iron the seam folds on the bottom pieces before sewing it to the shirt that would give me more control holding the pieces flush. As I look at the men’s shirts,img_0685 a second idea came to me. I noticed that most of the retail store shirts had top stitching on the collar. So on my next collar of this type I am going to sew and iron the top part of the collar as before, but only sew it to the top part of the bottom piece of the collar. Then I am going to sandwich the shirt between the bottom pieces of collar and sew not only the across the shirt and collar pieces but around the bottom pieces of collar to the where the top collar is attached if possible. I believe I can keep everything flush this way, and have more control too. I will then turn the collar right side out and attach the back bottom piece of the collar to the top of the collar in the top stitching. If it is off a little it will be ok because it will be hidden under the collar. I am very excited to give this idea a try and see if it works. Any other suggestions?

This shirt was also a lesson in placing buttons. After placing the buttons, I still had a fair length from the bottom button to the hem. After my husband told me it didn’t look right, I added another button at the bottom. He said it looked better, but we will see if it makes a difference when I sit. I also decided not to put a button at the top of the neck where the shirt meets the collar. I will never wear a tie and need that part buttoned, and besides that I like larger buttons and I thought it looked funny when I put a button on the collar.


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