Hemlock Tee: How to Sew a Deconstructed Jersey Neckline Finish

Not really a secret that I love the Hemlock Tee pattern from Grainline Studio. If you follow me on Instagram you’ll have seen a few of these pop up recently that haven’t yet been blogged. One you will have seen in my previous post. This one is just a simple grey jersey…DECONSTRUCTED JERSEY NECKLINE FINISH

This would not be particularly noteworthy apart from the fact I wanted to let you know this jersey from Minerva Crafts is frikkin gorgeous! So soft. So drapey. Not too flimsy. Need more in my life!

I also wanted to share my favourite jersey neckline finish of the moment! I’m not a massive fan of conventional ribbed neck bands . I like my tees to look a little more deconstructed and I really like the raw edge of jersey fabric. The way it curls  when you stretch it! But obviously  a neckline still needs some stability. So recently I’ve been opting for this neckline finish…DECONSTRUCTED JERSEY NECKLINE FINISH

It’s applied in exactly the same way as the pattern describes, with one exception. Instead of the folded edge of the neck band edging your neckline…you flip the band the other way round before applying it,  and have the raw edge exposed instead!

Here’s a quick step by step. If you’ve never applied a jersey neckband before you may also find this useful as it covers the whole process…at least this is how I do it!DECONSTRUCTED JERSEY NECKLINE FINISH

Take your neckband pattern piece and press it with some spray starch (helps stop the edges curling too much as you work); sew together the ends to form a loop then fold in half.

DECONSTRUCTED JERSEY NECKLINE FINISH

Taking the join as your centre back marker, mark your centre front point using a pin. Do this by folding the band in half with the join smack band in the middle. Mark the CF point with a pin on the opposite side.

DECONSTRUCTED JERSEY NECKLINE FINISH

Mark the sides with of the neckband with a pin too..

Have your tee right side out…DECONSTRUCTED JERSEY NECKLINE FINISH

Pin the CF of your neckband to the CF of your neckline. I’m going for that raw edge finish on mine remember. So I’m lining up the folded edge of my neckband with the raw edge of my neckline. If you want the clean/folded edge finish to your neckline, then line up the raw edges of your neck band with the raw edge of your neckline. Savvy?

DECONSTRUCTED JERSEY NECKLINE FINISH

Pin the sides of your neck band to your shoulder seams and the CB of your neck band to the  CB of your neckline. So your neckband is now pinned at both shoulders seams, the BB, and the CF of the right side of your neckline.

DECONSTRUCTED JERSEY NECKLINE FINISH

Serge to join. I work in 1/4 sections at a time. ie from pin to pin. Hold the layers of fabric under just enough tension for the neckband to match the length of the neckline. It will be drafted ever so slightly smaller than the neckline circumference which enables it to naturally want to turn to the inside .  So pull on it juuuust enough as it runs through the serger, but be careful not to stretch it out.

DECONSTRUCTED JERSEY NECKLINE FINISH

Press! Seam allowance/serged edge downwards…

DECONSTRUCTED JERSEY NECKLINE FINISH

Top/Edge stitch around the neckline to secure the seam allowance. So you now have a finished neckline with a raw edge detail (or if you attached the band the other way, a finished neckline with a clean folded edge!). If you want it a bit narrower you can start with a narrower band in the first place OR trim it down at this stage….

DECONSTRUCTED JERSEY NECKLINE FINISH

Make a notch/snip to the depth you want…

DECONSTRUCTED JERSEY NECKLINE FINISH

And trim!

DECONSTRUCTED JERSEY NECKLINE FINISH

I went even narrower on this one and part of me wishes I’d  restrained myself a little, lol! After laundering, the edges will soften, and depending on how long you’ve left them, (ahem) curl a little too.

You might ask what the point is in lining up the folded edge of the band with the raw edge of the neckline in the first place. You could just attach the band as normal, trim, and you still end up with a raw edge. I just prefer to do it this way because I find it easier to line up a folded edge with one raw edge, than it is to align 3 raw edges; and I find the inside finish cleaner this way too. Either way would work and it’s one of those cases of personal preference.

I’ve done a variation with a twist  of this on the hemlock in my previous post. The one I’ve yet to blog about! Then there’s one more that I’ve made; (and two more that I’m about to make). Plus my first stab at Suzy Pants and 3 completed Maya variations that are also unblogged!

I literally have too many blog posts to squeeze in before the launch of The Refashioners 2015.

Oh yeah, and I ought to refashion a shirt too, gasp!!

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32 Comments

  1. Claire Newton July 24, 2015

    Brilliant! Thank you so, so much for this tip – perfect for the really drapey viscose jersey that’s particularly challenging to fit a good neckband with 🙂

    Reply
    • portia July 24, 2015

      Definitely Claire!

      Reply
    • Vivian Baker July 25, 2015

      Can I do this win regular sewing machine? I don’t have a serger.

      Reply
      • portia July 25, 2015

        It is possible Vivian if you have a stretch stitch on your machine. You may get away with a narrow zig zag also. There are ways around it though I believe. Craftsy or BurdaStyle UK have a course called “No Serger No Problem” which covers alternative techniques with a standard machine 🙂

        Reply
        • Vivian Baker July 25, 2015

          Thank you so much. This is good information to have.

          Reply
  2. Aida July 24, 2015

    Cool tip to finish the neckline, will defenetely use it. Thanks for sharing it.

    Reply
    • portia July 24, 2015

      You’re welcome Aida!

      Reply
  3. Margaret Postings July 24, 2015

    This is a great idea. Will definitely try it when I make something suitable. Great instructions and pics better than mine… But I’m new to this I have only just started my blog. Hopefully it will improve as I go along.

    Reply
    • portia July 24, 2015

      Thanks Margaret! And it will improve. Should’ve seen some of my first posts on my first blog!!! 😉

      Reply
  4. Lesley July 24, 2015

    This is a wonderful neckline treatment, thank you for the very clear instructions.

    Reply
  5. Jennifer July 25, 2015

    Are your instructions for attaching the neckband the same when you talk about ‘matching up the raw edges of the neckline’? I think I get it from the photos but hope you can clarify. Thanks.

    Reply
    • portia July 25, 2015

      Sorry Jennifer! It was meant to say folded edge against raw edge! Have adjusted the text so hopefully it makes more sense now! Thanks for the heads up. So so sorry for the confusion!!! You weren’t the only one! Px

      Reply
  6. Olly July 25, 2015

    Pin the CF of your neckband to the CF of your neckline. I’m going for that raw edge finish on mine remember. So I’m lining up the raw edge of my neckband with the raw edge of my neckline. If you want the clean/folded edge finish to your neckline, then line up the raw edges of your neck band with the raw edge of your neckline. Savvy?

    Sorry – something I’m not getting here, it can’t be the same instructions for both finishes, surely?

    I really struggle with neckbands, I have two UFOs tucked away where I couldn’t make it fit, and your instructions otherwise are really clear so I may get them out and try to fix them.

    Reply
    • Chris July 25, 2015

      I was wondering the same thing! It looks like in the pic the folded edge of the neckband is against the raw edge of the neck line.

      Reply
      • portia July 25, 2015

        Sorry Chris! It was meant to say folded edge against raw edge! Have adjusted the text so hopefully it makes more sense now! Thanks for the heads up Px

        Reply
    • portia July 25, 2015

      Sorry Olly! It was meant to say folded edge against raw edge! Have adjusted the text so hopefully it makes more sense now! Thanks for the heads up. So so sorry for the confusion!!! Px

      Reply
  7. Lana July 25, 2015

    Like Olly, I was confused by that part of the instruction but I can see by the pictures that you lined up the finished edge of the band with the raw edge of the tee. Great pictures. Your post has given me the urge to sew again. Thanks.

    Reply
    • portia July 25, 2015

      Ah thanks Lana! Yep, well spotted! It was meant to say folded edge against raw edge! Have adjusted the text so hopefully it makes more sense now! Thanks for the heads up Px

      Reply
  8. Susan Seal July 25, 2015

    ^^ What Olly said. I have shirts with this finish and love them. Recently I wore one and inspected the neck band. It is the same as your hemlock. However I’m sure you meant your instructions for the raw edge finish band to say line up the Folded edge of your neckband to the raw edge of the shirt neckline? Thanks for the inspiration. Love your top!

    Reply
    • portia July 25, 2015

      You got it Susan! That is what it was meant to say! Have adjusted the text so hopefully it makes more sense now! Thanks for the heads up Px

      Reply
  9. Colleen Flanigan July 25, 2015

    I noticed that same thing about the redundancy of placing the the raw edge to raw edge for both finishes. I get it though–you have to do the opposite to achieve a different effect. Otherwise, instructions and pics are fabulous and I love, love, love the overall effect of the narrow raw edge. Thanks for posting!

    Reply
    • portia July 25, 2015

      Thanks Colleen! Have adjusted the text so hopefully it makes more sense now! Px

      Reply
  10. Piper July 26, 2015

    Ingenious, thanks! Gives a different edgy look to a plain Jane tee.

    Reply
    • portia July 26, 2015

      My thoughts exactly Piper 🙂 Glad you like!

      Reply
  11. Nathalie July 26, 2015

    great Idea! I’m definitely going to try that

    Reply
    • portia July 26, 2015

      Yay Nathalie :)!

      Reply
  12. justine July 26, 2015

    Great technique! I love this finish.

    Reply
    • portia July 26, 2015

      I think it’s become my TNT neckline for jersey Justine 🙂

      Reply
  13. marijka July 2, 2016

    I get a kick out of this because I’m always trimming away the folded neck edge of purchased t-shirts! I also scant trim the sleeve and hem, and give a tug to stretch the edges. Just can’t stand perfect edges or anything taut against my neck. 🙂

    Reply
    • Portia Lawrie July 3, 2016

      Ah me too!

      Reply
  14. Marl November 26, 2016

    I’d like to follow your posts. Please add my email address. Thank you!

    Reply
    • Portia Lawrie December 7, 2016

      Hi Marl, apparently your email address is set to opt out of subscription emails so I can’t add you to the list. Check your email settings, then revisit the “subscribe by email” box in my sidebar and enter your email address. Px

      Reply

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