Sew a beaded collar: free sewing pattern
Give a cardigan that vintage look by adding a beaded collar. By Suzanna Drew-Edwards
You will need
• A round-necked cardigan
• A piece of fabric measuring 40cm by 1m (we used a heavy satin lining).
• Lightweight iron-on interfacing
• Small embroidery beads such as pearls, bugle beads, diamanté or sequins.
Making a pattern
First of all decide how deep you want your collar to be. Ours was 5cm so we’ll use that measurement for these instructions.
The front collar
Unbutton your cardigan and lay the front neck edge out flat on top of a piece of paper (image 1).
Draw round the neck edge from shoulder seam to the button placket. Mark the slope of the shoulder seam and measure along it by 5cm.
From the neck edge, measure down by 5cm all the way along. Draw a gently rounded line for the curve of the front collar.
Add 1cm seam allowances to the curved front collar edges (but not the shoulder seam).
The back collar
Button the cardigan and lay it out flat on top of a piece of paper. Draw around the top back neckline of the cardigan and along the shoulder seams by 5cm (image 2).
Take the cardigan off the paper and from your neck edge line, mark down by 5cm all the way along. Draw a 1cm seam allowance along the top and the bottom edges (but not the shoulder edges.
Cut out both your front and back collar pattern pieces (image 3). Fold your back collar pattern piece in half (you’ll cut the pattern out with the fabric on the fold and you want both sides of the collar to match so you only use half the back collar).
Join the back collar and the front collar together with sticky tape at the shoulder seams. You will now have half a collar - starting from the centre back (image 4).
Double-check the collar fits by laying the paper pattern along the neckline of your cardigan (we found that its best to do this when you’re wearing the cardi).
Cutting out the fabric
Fold your collar fabric in half. Lay your pattern piece so the centre back edge is on the fold of the fabric.
Pin and cut out.
Repeat this process so you have two cut-out collar pieces.
Cutting out the interfacing
Fold your interfacing in half and lay your pattern piece so the centre back is on the fold of the interfacing. Draw around the pattern piece. You need the interfacing to be a little smaller than the collar piece, so cut out the interfacing 1cm in from your drawn line. You only need one piece of interfacing.
Iron the interfacing onto the wrong side of one of your collar pieces (image 5).
Stitching the collar
Take both collar pieces and with right sides together lay one on top of the other. Pin around the edges.
Using straight stitch, sew 1cm in from the edge, making sure to keep the curves nice and fluid. Leave a 6cm gap on the inner neck edge for turning the collar the right way round.
Trim the excess fabric from the corners of the collar and trim your edges (image 6). On the inside curve of the collar, cut little nicks in the fabric - this will help the seam to sit neatly. Turn your collar the right way round and poke out the corners with a knitting needle (image 7).
Press your collar with a hot iron.
Decide where you want to place your beads. We did ours freehand, but to make sure both sides are the same, you could make holes in your paper pattern piece and use this as a beading template. Stitch the beads by hand onto the interfaced side of the collar.
Attaching your collar
Pin the collar into place and with a matching thread, handstitch the collar onto your cardigan, making sure to sew up the gap you left on the inner neck edge.