Friday, December 22, 2017

How to sew doll clothes - Creating a V-Neckband for a Sweater or Vest

A little while ago I posted a picture of my latest creation. As requested I am posting some more details on how to do the V-neck band.
This design will be out for sale soon.

valspierssews doll clothes

  • You can easily change a T-shirt or knit top that already has a a round neck band into a V-neck top. Just fold the front in half and cut the V starting from about halfway down the armholes at the centre front and finishing at the original cutting line at the shoulder.
  • If your original design is not made for a neck band you may have to trim off the seam allowance before cutting your V so there is room for the extra width of the band.

So, after cutting out my top and sewing the shoulder seams it is time to do the neck band.

Use the front pattern 
piece to mark the point 
of the V at the seam line.

Don't try to guess where to stop. It is always
further than you would expect. Use the pattern
piece to mark it.

The band is about 2" shorter than the neck 
(1" when folded in half).

Fold the band wrong sides together and pin it all
the way along.

To adjust the length I pinned it at one end then stretched it
gently but firmly to the CF. I held it in place then stretched
the band along the rest of the neck.

After stretching it along the second half of the neck
I have a bit extra.

Just trim off the bit extra. I had about an inch extra
because my jumper knit is soft and stretchy.

Find the centre of the neck band then pin it to the V
at the centre front.

Use both hands to stretch that half of the band and
use your thumbs and pointers to hold it in place over the
shoulder seam then pin it in place.
Stretch each quarter and put a pin in the middle. Pin the other half of the band in the same manner staring by pinning it at the back.

Using a narrow zig zag, stitch the neck band with the
sweater bodice facing up so you can see where the snip is.
The neck should be pretty straight for sewing as you open
out the snip.

Fold the band up pushing the seam allowance
towards the bodice. Top stitch with a straight
stitch on the right side of the bodice close to
the seam.
Just check as you sew that you are stitching
the seam allowance in place. It tends to roll
around a bit.
Look under then push it into place with your
right thumb as you sew.

Fold the neck in half so you can stitch a little dart
in the V of the neck band.

Don't stitch the pleat parallel to the centre front!

Start the pleat closer to the fold. Try to stop at the
seam line in the centre of the v so you don't get a
little pleat. you just want a dart.

This is my finished v-neck. (You can see that little pleat.
It is driving me nuts but I don't think I can make it any
better and I don't want to nick the fabric by trying to
unpick it).
Next up I have to put in the armhole bands, stitch the side seams and do the waist band.
Trust me it is such fun to dress your doll in knit tops. I am no expert and even if it doesn't turn out perfect on your first try I can guarantee your knit top is going to look so cute.

Happy Sewing and Crafting,