Pop Quiz 481: What’s wrong with this collar?

Esther sends a link to an entry from Phat Chick who says she’s disgusted with Ready to Wear. Considering this particular source of disgruntlement -shown over there off to the right- I can’t say I blame her. Phat Chick says:

… here’s my pet peeve; This shouldn’t be happening. That’s an awful fold, and it keeps wanting to cave in like that. You wouldn’t believe how thin the fabric is. It feels kind of flimsy.

So boys and girls, we have a three part quiz:
1. What is causing this fold at the neckline?
2. How do you fix it?
3. Is the retail price unreasonable -listed at $118?

Hint: that fold has nothing to do with fabric weight. Have at it, your chance to show off.

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  1. Maura Townsend says:

    1: That’s a flaw in the cut of the neckline. It looks as though, if it were flattened out, it would be right up on her trachea. OW. Even if it’s designed to be boxy, that’s a bad place for the neckline to land, especially given that the collar looks to have been drafted with more curvature than the neckline itself. The heavy button (too heavy for light, thin cloth) isn’t helping.

    2: draft that neckline curve better. Retroactively? disassemble the collar, and refit the neckline so it actually follows a more natural curve. Attempt to fit the collar back on the altered neckline – however, that will probably also require altering the body panels slightly to account for the change, unless the fabric used is forgiving of being eased.

    3: Heck yes, if it needs that much reworking.

  2. dosfashionistas says:

    The same problem is causing both the fold and the wrinkles, namely that the top of the collar (It is a stand collar, right?) is too tight. It needs to be spread so that it will stand away from the neck slightly. Quite probably the neck needs some reshaping also, but you won’t know until the collar is looser.

    Is $118 too much? Not for a well made lined jacket. Is this a well made lined jacket? Unless I am crazy that jacket is lapped wrong for a woman’s garment.

  3. 1 and 2: What Maura said. I also get the feeling the fronts are trying to overlap more, so there might be a grain issue as well?

    3: You don’t need to ask us — it was marked down to $24, which means it wasn’t selling at $118.

  4. Kathleen says:

    Unless I am crazy that jacket is lapped wrong for a woman’s garment.

    You’re not crazy -and obviously not psychic either. If you click through to the entry, you can see she’s photographing herself in the mirror. Was this one too easy? I thought Maura’s point about the button was a good catch.

  5. Maura Townsend says:

    Thanks :)

    Further notes:

    The buttons should probably be switched out completely, because, if you look closer, you can see the lower ones pulling down on the cloth of the front panels. That is never good.

    The bad neckline looks like it is possibly a result of a poorly graded pattern designed for a smaller size.

  6. Jennifer S says:

    Either the collar is too small or the left front piece is wrongly cut because it looks like the left piece is shorter than the right on the distance between shoulder neck point to the hem. It looks like the left piece is pulling and perhaps because it’s shorter there is wrong button placements causing the fold there.

  7. Kat says:

    Phat Chick here…Noting that this jacket was a Medium and my neck is more of a RTW Small. This little number ended up on the Clearance rack and I didn’t discover my error until after purchase when I was at home.

    I returned the jacket today knowing that fold would drive me crazy. When exiting the store, I saw a large wall display of the same designer label jackets, probably the new Spring collection. Virtually every jacket on the wall had the same ugly fold–it was like a bad dream, which I noted to my daughter. I should have taken a pic with my cell phone, and maybe I’ll get the chance to do just that next week.

    Analyze away ;) !

  8. Johanna Lu says:

    The shape of the neckline and the collar clearly doesn’t compute. My guess also is that the neckline is cut too high on one side (which seems unbelievable sloppy to me, so perhaps I’m wrong here.) Also the button placement on the collar is off, it’s too tight. The woman has a very slim neck and it still looks like the collar is about to strangle her.

  9. Kimberly says:

    I’ll give this one a try! I think the center front length maybe too long. IF you were to smooth out the neckline bubble there, the neckline curve would be well above the hollow in the neck between the clavicles . Also the placement of the first button needs to be changed,plus the neckline curve maybe even in the back, but in the front for sure is too short, and therefore the collar is also too short pulling the collar down to create the wripple.

  10. denises says:

    I agree with the others about the shape of neckline. To me, it looks as though the CF neckline is supposed to be at the collar bone (as if it were a jewel neckline), but at the inside the neckline has had maybe 1.5″ taken away creating a sort of modified boat neck. After the neckline was fixed the top of the collar would need to be slashed and spread to make it stand just a little. Right now, the collar looks like its ready to strangle her. It doesn’t help that the jacket has to be at least 2 sizes to big for her. The shoulder seams are drooping down her arm.

    What caused me to comment was this trashy gossip example: http://perezhilton.com/2009-01-23-they-havent-broken-up-yet
    (Sorry in advance.)
    Similar neckline, nice collar, no buttons.

  11. Wacky Hermit says:

    1. The fold at the neckline is caused by one side of the neckline being too high. The collar is way too tight (she’s got a skinny neck and it’s tight on her!) but I don’t think it’s causing the fold.

    2. You fix it by making your own damn jacket. That’s what I’d do anyway. I quit trying to find RTW stuff that fits my large bust, short waist, and long crotch a long time ago. She doesn’t have my fit problems, but clearly isn’t satisfied with RTW either and probably has more reasons for it than some lousy collar. Besides, even if she tore the neckline apart and put it back together, she’d still have the problem of the collar being too tight, and she’d have to restyle the collar too. Depending how much her time is worth, she might as well go out and buy a different $24 jacket.

    3. My dad always says “The price of anything is precisely that which the market will bear.” Therefore clearly the price of this jacket is $24, because that’s what she paid. The fact that she did is proof that $24 was the value of the jacket to her. If she really thought the price was too much, she ought not have paid $24.

  12. J C Sprowls says:

    I don’t think the neckline is tight enough. This is a mandarin collar. The outside edge of the collar has collapsed around her neck. The neckline seam – which should be located around the neck – is located where a boatneck or tunnel collar would be located.

    In other words, because the circumference of the neckline is not positioned/fitted to hang off the body’s framework, both the collar and the CF are buckling.

    I saw somewhere that the fabric is flimsy. If the desired effect was to create a tunnel collar about where the clavicle is located, then fabric selection, interfacing selection and patterncutting techniques (i.e. darts into the neckline, properly cut facing, top- and under-collar, etc.) could have helped this style.

    For $118, I think the pricepoint is spot on for what the designer might have intended these materials to be used for. But, the execution just isn’t there to support the business and design proposition.

  13. Kaaren Hoback says:

    So boys and girls, we have a three part quiz:
    1. What is causing this fold at the neckline?
    2. How do you fix it?
    3. Is the retail price unreasonable -listed at $118?

    1. I am a creature of habit and had to mirror the image in order to “see” the neck as I would expect to. I think the base of the neckline is too narrow for the hefty overlap.

    2. Widen the neckline then redraft the collar which is too close fitting on the neck at that width and planned overlap, gentle the curves, sample, and adjust the pattern when faults are found.

    3. No – I do like the design – not the execution.

  14. Kaaren Hoback says:

    Oh! JC I viewed it as a narrow Bishop not a mandarin. In which case I agree that the neckline base is excessively wide. If the intent was to lay flat as low as the clavicle as a Bishop collar would then it needs to be wider.

  15. Esther says:

    Just looking at the picture, I would say the collar is a rectangle, which it should not be. The neckline of the jacket may need work too

  16. kristin says:

    The neckline is cut completely wrong.

    Basically what everyone said but what I want to address is, why is this jacket $118? It’s not a flattering fit. and the buttons makes you look older. I just don’t like the box cut. It’s just awful, I’m sorry.

  17. Zaz says:

    the top “thing” (fake collar) that is sewed on to the front may not be in bias for one. but what’s WRONG here is they wanted to narrow the item so the top thing maybe is as wide from the bottom to take in the fabric but it is not wide enough at its top so there is no room and it makes the bottom part of the top fold on itself.

    how to fix it? you take the part where the button is sewn and you add some length to it (patch). that i hope will be hidden under the button holes’ left part of the garnment.

    yes, if i tried it on and saw it this way i’d never buy it, it’s a cutting defect.

  18. Terri Dans says:

    I think it depends on what the design was supposed to be.
    Was the design for a “funnel” collar look? If you lifted the collar at the CF until the front lay flat, (the CF neck may be a bit high), it would force the top edge of the collar to open up, because you can see that the neckline/collar has fallen and pivoted on the button. That may be from a lack of structure/interfacing in the front of the jacket and the neckline compared with the weight of the collar and its interfacing and the button.
    If the intention was for the neckline to sit where it has fallen to in the picture, then there are problems with the length of the CF line/shape of the neckline from the fold area to the CF. and with the collar pattern shape too.
    Was it worth the money, if you aren’t happy with it, no. not even for $24.00.

  19. Kathleen says:

    Rita Yussoupova sent me an image file illustrating this problem she has with offshore contractors (they do a lot of private label). I’ll include it with my answer in part two but I also have to do a scan or mock up leading up to Rita’s to explain the whole thing.

  20. TobyWollin says:

    I first asked myself…”If I were to take off the ‘collar’ piece (the band with the top button) off, as if there were no collar there…would the center curves at the neck and the center folds of the fronts line up? Just looking at the photograph, it appears that the left front (the one on the right as we face this photo) has a higher curve at the center front than the right front (the one on the left as we face the photo) does – or, and this looks more like it to ME, that left center front length is longer, as if the operator grabbed an incorrect piece for the left half, by mistake (quality control here), and then, once they put the button hole and the button on, you ended up with that extra fabric pinched between the top button/button hole and the next one down. Am I close?

  21. dosfashionistas says:

    Taking a second look, I think the overlap side is a loose tab. I thought at first that this was a fold, where the tight collar had forced it to fold . The collar is definitely too tight, however, the fold in the button side of the neckline is not repeated on the right side, so I am going to assume that the neckline itself is not to blame. Whether it is too wide on the shoulders is a design decision and not up to the patternmaker. I would unbutton that collar and look at what happened to the neckline. It may be that a change in the button placement would solve the fold.

  22. ken simmons says:

    I am sure my answer to the problem will drive everyone crazy. 2 snaps are needed on the collar’s underlap, one above the button and another below to prevent the collar from pivoting on the button shank and from it’s own weight collapsing (while pivoting) to a “V” shape. This “V” ing of what should be circular is what creates the look of the top edge of the collar being too tight on the neck. Without snaps the interfacing on the CF of the jacket must be strong enough to fight against the gravity pulling on the collar. .

  23. Jimmy Hudson says:

    Not enough material. Add a 1/2 inch at the sleeve seam to each side of the upper front where it crosses the breastbone.

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