Elements of a Shirt Part 2: Collar

Follow along in Part 2 of our Elements Of A Shirt series as Myles shows how to sew a two-piece collar.


1. To prepare your shirt, sew your placket to the left and right front of your shirt, then staystitch your neck edge. To staystitch, simply sew a row of stitching within your seam allowance along your neck edge. This helps to keep the neckline from stretching out.

2. Fuse one of your collar pieces and one of your collar stand pieces. The fused collar piece becomes your undercollar. After your undercollar is fused, trim this piece down 1/8'' along the two side edges and the long outside edge. This helps the seam allowances to roll to the underside of the collar so we don't see them once it's finished.

3. Sew your undercollar (the interfaced collar piece) and top collar pieces together. When you get to the corner, stop a stitch early and pivot on a 45 degree angle to make one diagonal stitch. Then pivot the remainder of your corner and continue stitching. This diagonal stitch makes for a nicer-looking corner when you turn your collar right-side out.

4. Trim the seam allowances making sure to trim more away from your undercollar (interfaced) collar piece. Then clip your corners, first diagonally across and then again to remove excess bulk from the corner.

5. Turn your collar right-side out and press, making sure to roll your seam toward the undercollar (interfaced) piece. From the right side of your collar piece, edgestitch along the sewn edge (approx. 1/8'' from the edge).

6. Baste along the stitching line (usually 5/8''allowance) along the bottom of your non-interfaced collar stand piece. Press up your seam allowance using this basting as a guide. Topstitch the seam allowance in place (approx. 3/8'' from the folded edge).

7. Layer the collar and stand pieces. First, place your interfaced collar stand piece on the table right-side up. Next comes your collar piece with the interfaced side on top. Lastly, place the non-interfaced collar stand piece right-side down.

8. Pin all the layers together, making sure the corners of your collar piece line up with the notches of your stand piece. Sew all the pieces together, making sure to start and end on the interfaced stand piece. Trim the seam allowance on your interfaced stand piece making sure to leave about ¾'' of seam allowance near the bottom edge intact. On the non-interfaced stand piece clip the corners using small, ''V'' shaped cuts.

9. Turn your stand piece right-side out and press the collar toward the non-interfaced stand piece.

10. Now place your interfaced collar stand along the neck edge of the inside of the shirt (right-side of the collar stand to the wrong-side of the shirt). Pin the collar to the neck edge, matching all the notches.

11. Stitch your stand piece to your neckline making sure to pull the non-interfaced stand piece out of the way. Trim the seam allowance on the collar stand and make small clips on the neck edge within the seam allowance.

12. Press your seam allowance towards the stand piece. Pull your hemmed stand piece down to your seam line and pin it in place. Edgestitch the stand piece down, starting from where the shoulder seam meets the neck edge. When you get to the end of your stand piece, pivot at the corner and continue to edgestitch the rest of the collar stand.

13. Give your entire collar and stand a good press.


Congratulations on completing your two-piece shirt collar!

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