The Frill Collar Hack

The Weekend Long Read
It's almost time to start winding down for Christmas but I couldn't leave 2022 without sharing one more pattern hack. December isn't a creatively charged month for me so this make was slower and it took me longer to decide on the details. I sewed it over a few weeks leaving plenty of time to ponder over the design decisions so it turned out to be a very relaxed make.
I've seen a fair few frill collars around but I really started to get excited when I saw hacks of my own patterns with a frill collar added. I've included these lovely makes towards the end of this email and it goes to show you can add a frill collar to almost anything. Patterns this would work with include: Unisex Shirt (as I've used here), Classic Shirt, Over Shirt, Cara Top, Leila Shirt and the Frida Shirt. Essentially that's anything with a round neck and a centre front opening.
I chose the Unisex Shirt pattern for this make as it's my favourite shirt cut; I'm quite tall and I find the broader fit of the shoulders works with my frame. However about half way through the make I slightly regretted not choosing the Classic Shirt as the more feminine cut would balance well with the frill detail. But I pushed through and I'm still happy with the final outcome. You can read below for the make notes.
I'll be rounding up the year next week with our 2022 Round Up complete with a Q&A section - thanks for sending your questions on instagram stories and if you think of any more send them my way!
I hope you like this hack and as always I'll add it to the blog so you can refer back to it.
Hetty x

Make Notes:

Frill Collar

The frill collar looks particularly lovely buttoned up and works brilliantly for layering under winter jumpers. And it also works really well unbuttoned (see below).

Frill Coll Instructions:

- Cut a strip of bias fabric, 7cm wide and 86cm long.

- Press it in half and use the longest stitch on the machine to stitch a line about 1cm from the closed raw edges

- Pull the bobbin thread on the stitching to create your gathers. Take this nice and slow to get an even gathered shape. Lay the collar stand in-front of you to measure how much to gather in by

- Now lay the fused collar stand in-front of you right side up. Pin the gathered frill on as you would pin the collar. Turn edge end in at the end curve of the collar stand and once it's pinned check it from the front by turning the frill up.

- Once you're happy with how the frill is pinned then you can sandwich the other side of the collar stand and stitch around as if you're attaching a normal collar. Finish the rest of the process by following your normal collar instructions.

Bias Trim Detail

After I stitched the frill into place I thought the lower side of the collar stand looked too sparse in comparison. I wanted to add an extra trim detail to balance the busyness of the frill.

I cut another length of bias fabric about 2cm wide. I pressed the strip in half and inserted it between the collar stand and the neckline of the body. It's a small detail but one that I think makes a difference.

Cutting on the Bias

Just a note about cutting on the bias - I opted for a bias cut frill as it works really well with this checked weave. You wouldn't need to cut your own frill on the bias unless you wanted to do so for design purposes.

If you wanted to add the lower trim detail you would need to cut this piece on the bias to give it plenty of flexibility in getting around the neckline.

Along with the frill and trim I cut the following pattern pieces on the bias: back yoke, placket and the cuff. This was purely a design choice to go with the weave of the fabric.

No Pockets

I pinned the bias cut pockets on to see if they worked. They didn't... so I left them off.

Shaping the Hem

As I opted for the Unisex Shirt pattern I decided I needed to adjust the length and shape of the hem. The straight fit of the shirt didn't feel well balanced with the frilly collar so I cut it shorted and added a curve to the shape.

I did this slowly, cutting a little bit more each time and checking in between. The final length down the centre front is 62cm (measured from the bottom of the collar).

I think it's important to check the overall balance of a garment and how all the features tie in together. The length of a garment has such a huge impact on how something will feel and this piece was crying out for a shorter length to match the feminine design details.

Sewn By You:

Some beautiful frill collars that inspired me!

@sew.sleep.repeat | Cara Top

@y_craft_shapes | Frida Shirt