Saturday, February 07, 2015

Maybe it's not just me...

I have had a very  common experience when making banded-collar shirts.

If you'll excuse the blurry photos, I can show easier than I can explain:
The collar wraps so far around that it overlaps when the band button is done up.

Of course, I will never wear it done up, but it's annoying just the same

Since I was doing laundry today, I had one of my hubby's RTW shirts handy, to photograph for contrast.
Not only do the front collars not overlap, there is a substantial gap between them.  

For years and years, I have assumed it's because I'm such a mediocre seamstress that I just can't get the collars right.

But I'm coming to a different conclusion now.

I think the drafts are bad.

You'd think I would have figured this out by now, and started walking that seam to make sure it's going to work.

I will be pulling that pattern out and giving that a good check before I write the review.

But first I have to pick out about 4 buttonholes.

The 'this ought to be a good idea'  buttonhole foot.

You put your button in the little space at the back and it automatically makes a buttonhole to fit it.

Except it makes a buttonhole that's a bit too big, so I actually have to use a button that is slightly smaller than my intended button in order to get one the right size.
I made buttonholes in the neckband and sleeve cuffs, then tried it on to mark the rest of the buttonholes on the band.  Well, actually to just mark the button that goes at the full bust, since that 's the one spot that there Must Be A Button.  Then I marked off the rest of the buttons from that.

And I thought that those buttonholes looked awfully big...but I hadn't moved anything so I just shook my head and kept going.

I had to refill the bobbin...that's when I noticed that somehow the little slider that holds the button in place on the foot had gotten jostled or somesuch thing and was not holding the button securely.

So it was making buttonholes about 1/8" too long.



  1. Well, faced with that, I'd probably buy new buttons!
    I'll be interested in what you find out about your shirt pattern. Do let us know!

  2. I've come to the same conclusion over the years: bad/lazy drafting on the part of the pattern company or designer.

  3. I have encountered the exact same thing on both a simplicity and a vogue shirt pattern. I turned the simplicity into a tnt by measuring and altering

  4. I have one of those buttonhole adapters. If it is misbehaving I bind thread round and round it and knot it to stop it moving about. You do have to snip the thread when you want a different size but still its easier than unpicking a load of buttonholes.

    1. That's a good idea, Ruthie! I'll have to try that! But I have some needle-tipped scissors, so taking out the buttonholes really wasn't an ordeal. Just a nuisance.

  5. What pattern are you using? On banded collars like that the marking is critical and needs to be exact. Nancy Zieman has a great technique. Here's a link:

    1. It's McCall's 6436. I did this one the way the pattern guide instructed on purpose, so I could see exactly how it works. Not really a fan; won't be doing it that way again. If I hold the collar perfectly straight across the front, the collars just meet at the center front. But of course, there's a curve there when it's worn, so they overlap. I've just never really analyzed what's going on there... I think they're just defaulting to putting them at the center front, when in fact they should be set back just a smidge. Sort of like the default ease in the sleeve's almost always more than needed, but I didn't know that until I got online and started reading around.