How To Sew A Collar Like a Pro

Sooner or later, when we start sewing our wardrobe, we find ourselves face to face with the need to polish a neckline or the waist of a skirt. So, as if it were an apartment on the beach, today we are going to talk about the collar. But what exactly are collar and what are they for? Let’s solve these doubts!

The collar is located in areas that are likely to be seen even wearing the garment, hence its name. For this reason, these areas must have a portion of tissue from the right to preserve the aesthetics of the model. In addition, they help to polish the edge of curved areas and give consistency, helping the garment to have stability. The collar can be integrated into the garment (such as jacket lapels), or cut separately.

In today’s post, we will see the mechanics of a collar applied to a neckline. We will not go into the details of the garment closure (center back) and how it would affect the collar. We will see it later with specific cases.

Let’s go there!

STEP 1 Take the pattern out of collar

The patterns of the pieces that correspond to the collar are drawn in the same pattern of the body (skirt, pants, jacket, etc.) and then a copy is made on separate paper. Maintaining the same seam allowances is important for successful assembly.

Let’s see the necessary steps in more detail:

  • Draw a line parallel to the edge that we want to polish with the desired depth of collar (in necklines it is approximately 5 cm).
Draw the line of views in the body pattern
  • Trace the pieces of the collar on another paper with the appropriate cutting indications.

As a result, we will have the front and back patterns on the one hand and their corresponding collar on the other.

Bring out the view and body patterns

STEP 2 cut the pieces into fabric

  • Cut the pieces corresponding to the body and the collar in fabric.

It is very common to use a printed fabric in the necklines, armholes, and waist collar to add a fun touch to the interior of the garments.

It is also a very good solution for when we run out of enough tissue!

Cut-out views in patterned fabric
  • Apply thermal adhesive interlining on the reverse of the collar.

At this point, it is worth noting the thousand and one possibilities according to the genre and inspiration of the moment. Depending on the thickness of the fabric, the interlining or a little bit of everything, we can decide not to put the interlining on the seam allowances. It is a matter of testing, analyzing the results and having a little luck.

Reinforced views with thermal adhesive interlining

In this image, we can see the correspondence of the collar and the body parts. They are superimposed for didactic purposes, we have not seen anything yet!

Cut-out views in printed fabric placed on the body

STEP 3 Join the collar

Next we will mount the body on one side and the collar on the other.

  • Join the shoulders of the collar with a straight stitch.
  • Reinforce at the beginning and end of the seam.
Stitched views with straight stitching on shoulder lines
  • Overcast with zigzag stitch on each side of the seam allowance.
Zigzag overcast the seam allowances of the collar
  • Open the seam allowances of the collar with the tip of the iron.
Open the seam allowances from collar with the tip of the iron

STEP 4 Polishing the edge of the collar

We can polish the finish of a collar in many different ways: overcast with zigzag, overlock, hidden stitch, or as we have used in the tutorial, with bias tape.

Different finishes to polish a collar
  • Choose a color-matching bias tape.
Contrast color bias tape for edge polishing
  • Apply the bias tape at the lower edge of the collar (the upper one is attached to the neckline).
  • Give an iron to leave the collar smooth and polished.
Polishing the edge of the collar with bias tape in contrasting color

STEP 5 Polishing the neckline with the collar

  • Join the shoulders of the body, overcast the seam allowances, open them with the iron and sew a stabilizer stitch on the neckline.
Body with stitched shoulders and overcast seam allowances, neckline with stabilizer stitching
  • Right-side the body and collar.
Face the right eyesight and cleavage with pins
  • Match the shoulder seams.
Address the right eyesight and cleavage by matching the shoulder seams
  • Place pins around the entire neckline to secure the pieces.
Face the right eyesight and cleavage with pins
  • Sew the neckline with a straight stitch, making sure to do it below the stabilizer stitching.
Pass a stitching to join the neckline with the collar

STEP 6 Prepare the collar

As the seam line is curved at the neckline, we have to use various techniques so that the collar turns correctly towards the inside of the garment.

  • Make a few small cuts in the most curved areas without actually cutting the joint stitching.
Make a few cuts in the curved areas of the seam allowances
  • Halve the seam allowance for the collar.
Lower the seam allowance from collar to half to facilitate turning the collar towards the inside of the garment
  • Push the seam allowances (body and sight) toward the sight piece.
Push the seam allowances to the side of collar
  • Make a top stitch 2 mm from the seam line.
Stitch in the eye area to ensure seam allowances

This is the result of the stitching that forces the eye to turn inward.

Result of sewing the stitching to ensure the seam allowances towards the sight area

If we want an extra so that the collar remains in its area, we can use this machine foot with a central separator.

  • Make a straight stitch above the seam line using the spacer as a guide.
Make a stitching with a specific foot at the junction between neckline and sight

If we use a matching thread, these topstitches are practically invisible, especially the last one. Initially, the use of this foot may not be very clear, but it works! (and for more techniques that we will see later).

Result of sewing a stitching on the line of union between neckline and sight

STEP 7 Rotate the collar inward

  • With the tip of the iron, secure the edges of the neckline (not the whole collar).
Turn the collar inwards and give a touch of the iron on the edge of the neckline

It is advisable to work the collar (and especially if they are in curved areas such as a neckline) with the garment open, that is, if the sides are closed. This facilitates the assembly and once finished, we can continue with the rest of the garment.

Printed collar applied to the neckline seen from the right side of the garment

Now all you have to do is decide if you want sea or mountain collar, it’s that simple!

If you have any questions or concerns, you already know that you can leave a comment 🙂

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