On my first Dress No 1 by 100 Acts of Sewing, I decided on a bit of a whim to make a square neck. It’s one of my favourite necklines and I just love how it looks! By its nature, it obviously isn’t curved, so bias binding really isn’t really the best finish for the straight lines. You really need a facing to give it stability. There are different kinds of facing depending on your garment neckline (have a Google or get hold of any basic sewing book, even better, get an old copy of the Reader’s Digest Complete Guide to Sewing).
As Dress No 1 is sleeveless, I decide to do an all-in-one facing which also finishes the arm holes and gives a really neat and polished finish. This uses something call the burrito method (you shall see why) and is a bit more involved than adding a normal neckline facing, but well worth a bit of effort for great results!
A note on fabric and interfacing:
I made this second Dress No 1 for this tutorial in a denim cupro, which is a stable cotton and cupro mix fabric. For the facing I used a firm quilting type cotton, which is ideal. They were both very stable fabrics so I didn’t use fusible interfacing for any added support. If your main dress fabric is less stable, then you may want to add some fusible interfacing for strength. I like a very fine woven iron-on interfacing and I normally apply it to the facing pieces only. There is lots of info out there on using interfacing, so I won’t go into that any more here, though do feel free to ask questions below and I can try and help!
NOTE I also added porthole pockets and a decorative seam down the front and back of my dress, which is why you can see a line of stitching down the front and back. It’s too much to elaborate on here, so have treated the tutorial as if you are cutting the dress on the fold as per the original pattern instructions.
So here we go, it’s quite long but bear with me. Probably best to read through it all first and tackle it in small steps!
1. Draft your neckline shape.
Trace off a copy of your Dress No 1, one for the front and one for the back.
Work out how low you want the neckline to be and draw a line across your pattern at the desired depth on your front pattern piece. This will be your actual neckline or stitching line. Then draw another line about half an inch above (this will be your cutting line).