Altering a Shawl Collar Using Vogue 8605

Recently I have made three renditions of Vogue 8605: a practice muslin, a wearable muslin and a fleece jacket.  The pattern itself I have already reviewed, but I wanted to go over the one alteration that I foresee most sewers making on this pattern.

The collar is very large on this pattern and like many plus size women, it is my waist that is enlarged, not the back of my neck.  This is a common alteration for me and for many other sewers as customizing the pattern here is very easy. 

But if you make a change to the back center seam, remember to carry that over to the back of the shawl collar.  If you are new to sewing shawl collars you are in danger of slashing back on the wrong seamline.

I took out material and I can’t imagine too many people adding to this particular patterns neckline as it is already a very generous cut.  Here is an illustration of what I did.

Not exactly drawn to scale but here is what the back and front pieces look like.

The alterations are marked in red. It is easy to forget to decrease the front pattern also and then you have excess fabric when you go to sew together the two necklines.

To finish, I’ll go ahead and show you all three jackets, from practice to finished.  I kept progressively cutting back on both the back neck seam and the curve of the collar.  The practice muslin is made in very drapey terry and shows that you could get away with sweater fabric for this pattern.  Left alone the collar will have folds and the jacket will have a lot of flow if that is what you are going for.

Vogue 8605 practice muslin:The collar extended beyond my shoulders when it was fully pulled out.

The second rendition, what started out as my wearable muslin and then transformed was made in a heftier double knit.  It has a vintage swing coat feel.  And believe it or not I lopped 1 1/2 inches off the collar outer curve and it is still a large collar.

Vogue 8605 Wearable Muslin:Made of double knit poly it hangs more like a vintage swing coat.

My final one, made in grey fleece looks more like a cape when I wear it.  I lengthened the hem and cut another 1 1/2 inches off the collar curve.  It took only four hours to make this one.  I had some practice but this isn’t a fussy design so you come out with a finished project very quickly.

Vogue 8605 in Fleece. When wearing it hangs like a cape but with more structure. The collar is significantly cut back.

I admit I was very infautated for awhile but now I am off of this pattern.  I promise no more posts about this one.  Now I am working on McCalls 5764 a poncho, something I’ve always felt was too loosey-goosey and unstructured for me to wear, but after the practice muslin I am reconsidering!

Next Post: 2 September 2010; McCalls 5764 Poncho:Pattern Review

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