How to add a Peter Pan Collar to Any Top

Do you love Peter Pan collars as much as I do? They always seem to add the perfect amount of detail to a top or dress. I also love that they never seem to go out of style! We see them everywhere…

From J.Crew

To Anthropologie

You’ll find them on t-shirts, sweaters, and dresses. The bad news? Tops like the ones above can be priced up to $98, which, as cute as they are, I’m not willing to spend on a shirt. The good news? You don’t have to spend $98! Most of us already have one (or three) sweaters or dresses in our closet that can easily be transformed, and today I’m going to show you how!
Ready to take this…
To this?
Let’s get started…
round necked top (or dress) – remember that if you’re using a sweater with a small neck opening that relies on stretch to get over your head, that adding a non-stretchy collar might make it difficult to get the sweater on – make sure you’ll still be abe to wear the sweater after the collar is added :)
cotton scraps (affiliate link) large enough to cut 4 front/back collar pieces
mid-to-heavy-weight fusible interfacing (I used Pellon 931TDaffiliate link)
1. Fold your top in half as pictured. Try to keep the natural shape of the curve in place.
2. To make your collar pattern, trace the curve between center front to center back.
3. Sketch your collar shape on each end of the curve as desired – I made the front collar a bit larger than the back.
4. Trace around the entire collar, 1/2″ away on all sides (to account for seam allowance).
5. Cut your pattern out and use it to cut 4 collar pieces out of your fabric, plus 4 pieces out of interfacing (I had to adjust my curved seam allowance to 1/4″ to fit the pattern piece on my fabric).
6. Fuse interfacing to each collar piece.
7. Right sides together, stitch two collar pieces together along outer curve (inner curve will remain open). Trim seam allowance to 1/8″. Repeat with remaining two collar pieces.
8. Turn collar right side out and press flat. Topstitch along outer curve 1/4″ away from edge. Repeat with other collar piece.
9. Serge the inner curve, removing NO fabric with the serger blade, or zig-zag stitch along inner curve. Repeat with other collar piece.
10. Mark center front and center back of top with pins and pin collar to wrong side as pictured (the more pins the merrier, especially if sewing with one stretchy and one non-stretchy fabric. The collar should overlap the neck edge 1/2″.
11. Stitch along pinned edge, attaching collar to top. Repeat steps 10-11 with other collar piece.
12. Fold collars over and press flat in place against top.
13. Topstitch around entire neckline and collars, 1/4″ from folded edge of collar.
You are done!
Enjoy your new Peter Pan top!

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  1. Thanks for this tutorial! I’m loving this trend right now. This is now on my to do list

  2. Ahhhhh! Folding the shirt in half from front to back is a great tip. I’ve been struggling with making the curve fit properly.

  3. Collars sort of intimidate me…so I am so glad you posted this excellent tutorial! Fantastic. I love how it turned out!

  4. omygeeeerrd. It’s that easy?! Why aren’t there any patterns for ’em? It must not be in vogue … but not one pattern?! I almost thought about buying the rare children’s pattern that has these collars and reverse engineer it for adults, but i KNEW the internet wouldn’t fail me! THANKS FOR TUTORIAL!!

  5. You really make it seem so easy together with your presentation however I to find this matter to be really one thing
    which I feel I would never understand. It sort of
    feels too complex and extremely extensive for me. I’m taking
    a look forward in your subsequent publish, I’ll try to
    get the hang of it!

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  7. Can you please create another similar tutorial? I would like to learn how to combine an existing blouse and jumper, adding the collars and cuffs from the blouse to the jumper, and possibly even adding front and back shirt tails at the bottom of the jumper too. If you know how to do this, it would be amazing if you could also teach us how to create a cardigan as an alternative option, with the same trim additions.

    I understand the way that you phrase your instructions, so a tutorial from you would be ideal. I appreciate your time is valuable though so if you are not able to help directly, perhaps you could help by linking to another site with a tutorial on this?

    Thanks for the information you have shared with us already. Excited to try this tutorial and see if you can help with the idea above too!

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