Shirt with high, curved neck and collar adaptation

NOTE! Please read “IMPORTANT to read before adapting shirts/tops” to decide what type of back suits you best. Also note that these instructions can be followed for SHIRTS and some other collared TOPS and JACKETS.

You will need a shirt or other collared top (slightly looser fit) for this as well as some non-stretch cotton for pattern making and some fabric in a matching colour for the actual adaption/replacement piece (fig. 1).

Regular button-down dress shirt, front and back 

 

Make a pattern from the yoke

Mark and then cut the inner yoke piece away using the seams surrounding the back yoke as a guide and give yourself a 1 cm allowance. Cut carefully as you will use this piece as a base for your pattern (fig. 2 and 3).

Mark och cut the inner yoke piece away using 1 cm allowance

 

Carefully cut out yoke piece and shirt with cut out

 

Cut the removed shirt (yoke) piece in half. Place one of the halves on fabric (use cheap cotton) and redraw the piece adding 1 cm to the top, bottom and sides of it. Do not add  to the middle of the piece (center) (fig. 4 and 5).

Cut the yoke piece in half

 

Put piece on cotton fabric and redraw top, bottom and side lines adding 1 cm - do not add to the middle

 

Using a ruler make a mark approximately 2 cm up from the shoulder point and 3 cm up from the mid neck point on the center fold. Use the neck and shoulder points on the original piece as a guide but measure from the redrawn line. This is an estimate for a medium size shirt. For large to very large size shirt you may want to add another extra 0,5 to 1 cm. For smaller sizes you may want to use 0,5 cm less. See illustration (fig. 6) below image I and II.

Use the original redrawn lines as a guide and drew new line along the top connecting the points (fig. 6 image III).

Mark a point 1 cm in from the top of the new mid neck point (or 0.5 for smaller size’s). Use a ruler and draw angled line from the bottom mid point. This is your new centre fold line (fig. 6 image IV).

Cut out the piece and lay on a new piece of cotton (fig. 6 image V and VI).

Mark out and redraw the top line lifting it at shoulder and center points. Redraw the center line. Cut out redrawn piece

Add new seam allowance of 1 cm to the top, side, bottom and center line and cut out. This is now your pattern piece (fig. 7).

Add new seam allowance of 1 cm to the top, side, bottom and center line and cut out.

 

Make and attach replacement yoke piece

Lay your pattern piece on your matching fabric. Cut 2 pieces on the folded fabric (fig. 8).

Lay your pattern piece on your matching fabric and cut out 2 pieces

 

You now have 2 fabric pieces. Place these together with right sides facing each other. Pin in place, sew together and zig-zag or overlock the edge. Fold and press to one side (fig. 9).

Sew fabric pieces together at center line - right sides facing each other - zig-.zag or overlock the edge

Overlock or zig-zag the edges of the piece to stop fraying (fig. 10).

Overlock or zig-zag the edges of the piece to stop fraying

 

Fold all the edges under 1 cm and press well (fig. 11).

 Fold all the edges under 1 cm and press well

Zig-zag the raw edges of the shirt if possible. Cut small notches in the corners of the hole on the shirt. This allows for more movement of the original garment when inserting the new piece (fig. 12).

Zig-zag rhe raw edges of the hole on the shirt and cut small notches in the corners

 

Begin to pin the new adapted piece to the shirt. Start at the bottom (at the middle point) and work your way out and until you reach the centre top. Fold the ends under when you get to them. This might take some manipulating and readjustment to fit. You will see some buckling and folding of the collar as the resized replacement piece is slightly smaller than the original yoke. You will now need to adapt the collar to fit (fig. 13).

Pin the adaption piece in place. Start from the middle bottom and work around. Note that the collar will be folded as replacement piece is resized smaller

 

Collar adaptation

Cut the collar into 2 pieces at the center back (fig. 14 and 15).

Cut the collar into 2 pieces at the center back

Collar cut into 2 at center back

 

Familiarise yourself with the construction of the collar (fig. 16).

 Familiarise yourself with the construction of the collar

 

At the place where you cut the collar apart, unpick approximately 1 cm of the seams and top stitching at the top of the external collar as well as where the external and internal collars meet (fig. 17 image I).

Trim off approximately 1 cm of the internal collar (leaving the external as is) (fig. 17 image II).

Fold in the edges of the external collar on both sides so the folded edges meet at center back (fig. 17 image IV).

Detach external and internal collar. Cut off 1 cm of internal collar. Fold edges of external collar under

 

Hand sew the collar centre seams back together. Use small careful stitching in matching thread (fig. 18).Hand sew the collar center seam back together in matching thread

 

Finish adaptation of yoke

 

Finish pinning the replacement yoke piece into place (fig. 19).

 Finish pinning the replacement yoke piece into place

Hand sew replacement/adaptation piece into place (fig. 20).

Hand sew replacement/adaptation piece into place

 

Finished example of the shirt – before and after adaptation (fig. 21).

Finished example of the shirt - before and after adaptation

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