The San Diego pattern has a very unique way of making the facing and collar. The process isn't difficult but requires precise stitching to get a clean, sharp look. We have made a lot of San Diego samples and have found, through trial and error, several tricks for more accurate stitching. To help you make your best San Diego, we have put together a little tutorial on sewing the neckline, complete with tips that we have found make the process easier. Enjoy!
Here are two close images of the San Diego neckline, so you can see how it is constructed. While the pattern shows it as an open collar, as seen above, you can add buttonholes to make a faux turtleneck. Also, notice the dropped shoulder seams, a fun construction detail that we have also used on the Soho Coat, Opal Jacket and Zona Jacket.
1. Before stitching, use a chalk marker to trace your staystitching line. Tailor tack your Dots A & B. Follow the chalk line when you staystitch for the most accurate line, pivoting at the dots. For instructions on tailor's tacks as well as Linda's other favorite sewing techniques, check out our Sew Confident! 2015 tutorial, Fine Tune Your Sewing Skills.
2. Press the facing to the wrong side along the fold line. Carefully clip to the tailor tack that represents Dot A.
3. For a crisp, straight seam allowance, use a template. We cut a manila folder and marked a 5/8" seam allowance. Place the template on the wrong side of the fabric and fold the seam allowance to match your marked line. Press.
4. Stitch center back and press seam allowance open.
5. After tracing and stitching the staystitching line on the back neckline, measure down 5/8" from each neckline corner. Make a mark on the staystitching line.
6. When placing the front and back together at the shoulder seams, place a pin through your tailor tack to the shoulder marks you made in Step 5. This will help you line up your pieces accurately.
7. Stitch along your staystitching line, stopping precisely at the tailor tack. Clip corner to stitching.
8. Before pinning the front and back neckline together, clip along the back seam allowance to the staystitching.
9. Pin the front and back together along the neckline. To stitch, start at one shoulder point and stitch to the center back. Stop stitching and repeat on the opposite side. Be sure to start precisely on the tailor tacks for a perfect point on the outside of the garment.
Below, see what the pattern pieces look like unfolded. The curve you see is for the armscye, the seam allowance and fabric you see on the left is the neckline.
We hope this helps you in your San Diego sewing journey! Do you have any tips or tricks you would like to share with us? Be sure to leave them in the comments below! And if you haven't made a San Diego yet, try it today!