Great use for hankies, Peter Pan Collar tanks! Tutorial

I'm proud to say I came up with this one on my own (I think).
I collect cute vintage hankies and have way too many, even with selling some in my Etsy store.  As a fun way to dress up summery tanks and tees, I've decided to make Peter Pan collars (that means the classic cutesy rounded-edge, vintage-ey shape) out of decorated hankies and put them on plain tees and tanks!
To do this, you'll need a tank, a hankie, and some white cotton for the underside of the collar.  Here's what I'm starting with:
I'm going to show you how to do two styles of collar--one that wraps around to the back and one that's just a fake collar, only in front.  You may not have enough hankie fabric to do the full collar; I ran into this problem with one of my hankies, so it's only on the front!
So here's what I did.
  • Fold the tank in half and make a pattern that follows the curve of its neckline.
  • Using the arc, create the shape of the collar--just eyeball it!
  • Cut out around the collar adding a 1/2-5/8" seam allowance, whatever you prefer.  This is your pattern piece, which you'll use to cut out from the hankie and the white cotton.
  • If you have enough hankie to do a full collar, do the same thing but trace around to the back of the tank, too:
 It's okay if your lining and hankie fabrics don't match up perfectly, or if you don't have 100% enough fabric... the uneven places will get lost in the seam allowance.
  • Turn the pieces right sides together and sew *along the curved edge only*.
  • You're going to flip and press, but first clip along the curve in the seam allowance so you don't have bulk along the edge.
  • Flip and press.
  • Press under 1/2" through both layers and clip along that curve, too.
  • Find the center of your tank and pin the collar down, using your 1/2" fold as the guide to fit the edge of the tank directly into.  Sew (on the inside of the tank) along the curve.
  • If you're doing the partial collar, turn under 1/4"-1/2" at the top and finish the seam on the inside.  Then hand-sew the fold down.
 That's it!

57 comments

  1. Genius! Peter Pan Collars are so romantic, especially your version :)

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  2. Love it!!! A great way to make regular tanks a bit more interesting.

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  3. That really dresses up the tank top. Great idea!
    Kathy

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  4. I love it!! I think I'll have to alter some tank tops for my girls.

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  5. Very cute, especially that first one. Fun idea!

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  6. Love it! I love old hankies, but I never know what to do with them.

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  7. Oooh those are cute - I lurve the hankies, they're beautiful :D

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  8. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  9. I actually posted a nearly identical tutorial for this, 5 days ago. And UrbanOutfitters actually sells a peter pan collar tank: http://www.urbanoutfitters.com/urban/catalog/productdetail.jsp?id=18490128

    Great minds think alike?

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  10. Love it, and as always, your instructions are easy to follow. Now I have a question/favor to ask. I have a lot of fancy straight trims that are not suitable for turning into ruffles - they have to be used as a straight piece in order to see the beauty of the trim. Do you have any suggestions how I can use these to refashion clothes?

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  11. That is so cute! I love it.

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  12. Holy bologna that's the cutest thing ever. I LOVE peter pan collars, and I LOVE vintage hankies. I have quite a collection, but I'm saving them up for a gigantic umm... tent? lol I don't know what it will be, but I'm tacking all the scalloped edges together to make a floaty... giant... thing! Curtain? Ceiling art? Room divider? All of the above, on rotation?

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  13. super cool idea. thanks for sharing with us!

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  14. So cute!

    I just found your blog and now I'm most certainly a big fan. I LOVE to sew and could use the constant reminder to pull out my machine. :)

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  15. That is absolutely adorable. Great idea! I love it.

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  16. This is truly ace! will be trying this post haste. Hey that all kinda rhymed. Keep it up!

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  17. Adorable! These are super cute! I think the collar paired with your tutorial that has buttons down the center would look really cute, finished and polished!

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  18. Hello, wonderful! I love peter pan collars. Love them. I would marry them if I could. This will be the perfect way for me to make my maternity tank tops not so blah this summer. Thanks for sharing!

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  19. This is great, I've been looking for a project to do with hankies - perfect! Thanks so much for sharing!

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  20. You are so creative. I'm a sewing beginner and am so glad I found your blog!

    Dinah

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  21. Beautifully sweet! I'm definitely going to dig up some hankies. I love sewing projects. Great tutorial.

    Thanks for sharing at My Backyard Eden.

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  22. Great embellishment!

    Thanks for linking up with Sugar & Spice.

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  23. Those are adorable, thanks for sharing!

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  24. What a great idea! I love the classic and modern look. Thanks for linking up!

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  25. Fabulous! I LOVE using vintage linens. Thanks for linking!

    Leisel
    Brown Paper Packages

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  26. I found you through Totally tutorials and was immediately intrigued by this tute! What a great idea! I will certainly try this. Thanks for sharing!

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  27. I love it! Might be just what I was looking for. Hope my fabrics can pull it off. Otherwise, its going on the list for another project!

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  28. That's adorable! I have tons of those cute hankies too and never know what to do with them. Thanks.

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  29. Thank you so much this i really useful- I can't wait to try it out!!
    www.styleisalwaysfashionable.blogspot.com

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  30. I am so glad I follow your blog and stumbled across this link in your newer post. I have just finished a dress but am not happy with the neck line and was thinking of a collar. I shall be using this tutorial tonight :)

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  31. AWW this is such a great idea. I have seen a few ways to do this but yours is really cute love it :)

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  32. This is so cute! I love that you used hankies for it.. Check out my peter pan collar shirt tutorial :)
    http://muchmorethanthebirds.blogspot.fr/2012/08/tutorial-petter-pan-collar-and-open.html

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  33. Thanks for this tutorial! I spent this afternoon trying it out and made these two little gems. I used an old sheet for the one one the left and a weird black dress just sitting around for the one on the right. I'm excited to find more fun fabric to add collars to other stuff I have wasting away in my closet!

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