Start your sewing adventure with us.    Join Seamwork

Articles on this site were all published prior to 2017 and this site is no longer updated. Please visit our Magazine, Patterns, and Classroom for the most up-to-date content and products.

Detail Inspiration: collars

Collars are one of my favorite elements to add to a garment. There are literally endless variations (so be prepared for more posts showcasing other collar styles in the future!) and they can be tailored or soft, contrast or fade into the surrounding fabric, and add an originality to a garment when you work in some variations. I’ve gathered a few examples for you today of similar in shape, but distinctly different collars. Enjoy!

This beautiful jacket from the 1950s sports a variation on the rounded collar–a timelessly classic style. I love how the collar is seamed in two pieces to create the width, and then the little bow/tuck detail on the right shoulder. Charming! Details like this can add a bit of subtle flair to an otherwise tailored piece, without being overly twee.

This is a more contemporary take on the rounded collar as seen in the Orla Kelly Fall/Winter 2012/13 collection. While it bears striking resemblance to the one above, the distinctive pleating at the center front placket sets it apart and gives it a textural appearance. I love how the collar takes on a new dimensional look with the flair of the pleats, as well as the pop of the cream against the cranberry red.

Finally a fun take on the collar shape! Adding scallops, or in this case points, to a collar can give it a lot of distinction, even when it’s sewn up in a subtle fabric such as this white textured blousing. The pointed elements are just repeated in the front, but the shaped edges could be repeated around the collar as well.

Images: 1950s jacket, Orla Kelly A/W 2012/13, 1950s blouse.

Casey Cartwright



September 5, 2012 #

I really love that 50s jacket collar detail! I’m going to have to file that one away for later, I think!!

I also love that Orla Kiely cardigan. I wish I could afford her pieces, but I can sure enjoy the heck out of them in the meantime :)


September 5, 2012 #

Orla Kiely does a few pieces for the Japanese/British fair trade company People Tree, which I think are a bit less expensive than her own label: – also check under Archive>Designer for more of her designs at reduced prices!


September 5, 2012 #

What is your take on wether to interface collars?
I’ve used modern patterns that tell you to interface and vintage patterns that don’t. I prefer the feel and shape of the non interfaced.


September 5, 2012 #

I love the collar on the navy jacket! It really goes well with the overall piece.


September 5, 2012 #

You’re right, collars are such a great detail. In my opinion, they frame the face. The one from Orla Kelly is amazing. The pleats are so different!


September 5, 2012 #

any ideas on how you would go about making that orla kelly one ? im quite new to sewing and wouldn’t know were to start!! :)


September 5, 2012 #

one of the new victory patterns has that pleated collar. the roxanne.

paunnet just made it up. :)


September 11, 2012 #

Really want to learn love your tutorial classes.

Children of Eve

September 11, 2012 #

I am crazy for that navy collar. Looking forward to more collar inspiration!