09 December, 2010

Simplify, simplify, simplify! A simpler neckline.

Several of the tops I've made lately are very simply constructed, with no shoulder seam.  The neckline treatment evolved as I was making them. I bound the first two, but continued to look for a simpler approach.  Finally, I came up with this:

1. An asymmetrically flattened oval template for the neck opening.  It's flatter at the back than at the front, and placed so its long axis is not aligned with the shoulder seam (in the absence of a seam, the shoulder fall line) but shifted towards the front.  The overall circumference should be approximately the same as one's head; it'll enlarge slightly in the finishing step.

2. No binding.  Instead, a line of fine stitching circumscribes the neckline about 1 cm from the cut edge. The edge is then folded over - some clipping is necessary to get the edge to fold over at the tight curves - and stitched down with two lines of very-very short stitches.  

 The second line is created continuously with the first, with a two stitch jog at the end of the first "circumnavigation".  I'm slightly compulsive about tying off thread ends with a tailor's knot and then hiding them into seams, so even this tiny little step is a time-saver for me.

Once the neckline is finished, the flat fabric is folded again and the side seam chalked in and pinned (marked by orange pinheads) - from the right side, since it'll be a French seam. 


  1. Interesting technique--I am intrigued by the shape of your neckline. Definitely makes more sense than a symmetrical hole.