Friday, May 13, 2016

Collared Knit Shirt

The idea for this shirt was in the queue for a very long time. I tried to draft the collar for it last year, couldn't get it right, and set it aside for other projects. Then, when I made this jacket for Booper, I realized what I needed to do to make that collar work!

  So in March, I tested it out! I'm not sure what to call the collar- it's cut on the front piece with a notch at the center front, and a seam at the center back. I think I saw the idea first on a photo of a vintage dress, but I'm really not sure at this point!

  I initially interfaced the collar with knit interfacing but it still reduced the stretch too much, so I pulled it back out. This is unfortunately the closest photo I have of the collar: (If anyone has some tips on how to avoid overexposing red while properly exposing everything else, I'd love to hear them!)

    I had fun figuring out the construction sequence on this- first, with a regular sewing machine, I sewed the back collar seam for the outer and facing pieces. I sewed the facing to the collar just at the notch section, then used my serger to finish sewing the facing on, flipped it right side out, and pressed everything. Next, I sewed all the way across from the shoulder tip, around the back neckline, and to the other shoulder tip. I probably should have sewed that last pass on a regular sewing machine so I could pivot better at the corners, but it worked okay on a serger.

  The other feature of this shirt is flared sleeves... I just cut at an angle from the elbow and curved the hem of the sleeve slightly so it would be the same length all the way around, then used the first sleeve as my pattern piece for the second. I kind of wish I'd made a paper pattern piece too though, because the amount of flare is exactly what I wanted!

  I was really pleased with the collar and sleeves, but when I put the shirt on before hemming I was extremely disappointed!

  In spite of adding a width to my knit shirt pattern, the shirt was much too tight. In addition, my undergarments showed through, and I looked really pale in it. Fortunately the paleness turned out to just be the lighting near the mirror I was looking in. ;-) I managed to make the shirt wide enough through the belly and hips by opening the side seams and inserting a gusset. It's still slightly tight over the bust though.

  And the sheerness is solved by wearing a tank top under it... although layering means that it's not going to get nearly as much wear as it would otherwise.

  So I'm pretty happy with it after all, and I like the style enough that I'll probably make another shirt like this sometime in the future. =)

  The collar would probably look better a little bit tighter, but I really dislike things pressing against my neck, so this is more comfortable for me.

  When I first decided to make this I couldn't find any patterns with a collar like this, but this pattern was recently released, and looks like it has the same type! Also, the unfortunately not opaque fabric I used is from Girl Charlee. ;-)

Thanks for stopping by,



  1. You sewed for yourself! The flared sleeves are beautiful. And a gusset to the rescue- ha! I've done a couple of those this week. I like the neckline- gives such a stylish look to your top.

    1. Thank you! I love flared sleeves- they aren't very practical, but always feel very elegant to me. =) Gussets can be very useful things. ;-)

  2. I am glad that you got to make something for yourself! The gusset in the side was a smart idea- I would not have thought of trying that!

    1. Thank you! I hadn't realized how long it was between this and the last thing I made myself! I've seen people refashion too-tight ready-to-wear shirts with a contrasting gusset... I'm happy it worked here too. =)

  3. Oh! Very elegant! I like the line that the gussets created. It matches the line of the sleeves, makes it unified.

    1. Thank you! I hadn't noticed that, but you are right, it does unify the lines! One of those happy accidents. =)