Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The Yokes on Me!

Hugo likes his woven shirts. I like sewing woven shirts. Which is just as well. I have made a lot of woven shirts and constructed a lot of yokes.
Oliver+s show my favourite method well in their Sketchbook shirt pattern. I did blog the construction here. Recently I made Matilda two Ayashe blouse's and I was struggling with the yoke directions. So I decided to try my 'tried and true' yoke directions and it worked well.

So I thought I would share.
Following the instructions gather the back between the notches.
Place the back on top of one of the yoke pieces RIGHT sides together.
Match notches.
Layer the RIGHT side of the other yoke piece on top of the back matching notches.
The back will be sandwiched between the two yokes.
Sew together.
Double check your seam allowances!
Press the yokes up taking care to roll the seams between your fingers to make sure the seams are flat.
Once the seam is well pressed fold one yoke down.
Pin the RIGHT side of the front shoulder seam to the RIGHT side of the yoke.
The result seems the same whether the back is right side or wrong side up. Either way,the seam is inside the yoke.
Sew and press the seam towards the yoke.
Take the un-sewn yoke edge and wrap it around so that the front is sandwiched between the two yoke pieces.
Sew the seam and press well.
Pin in place.
This can be fiddly especially with a smaller size shirt.
The side with the pin in it is the side that is pinned to the front.
Gently pull the yoke through the neck opening and press again.
Ta-dah-no raw edges!
Rinse and repeat!
I used the same method to attach the neck band as I used in the Sketchbook tute.
It can be helpful to hand sew the very edge of the collar BEFORE topstitching. 

The seam can be a wee bit bulky. A quick tap with a clean hammer can soften the seam.
A super cute Ayashe with a super clean inside finish and of course you can apply this method to any yoked shirt or blouse.
I hope it helps.
x N


  1. Thanks for that! This blouse is on my to-do soon.
    I call my fabric hammer a 'knock-om-eter'. Oh, and what size did you used for Tildy?

  2. My pleasure Deb.
    I would be lost without my little hammer,I like 'knock-om-eter'.

    I made Tildy the smallest size in a stretch poplin(I blogged a few comments about sizing a few weeks back).
    The neck could be lower to go over her head but the rest is a perfect fit.
    x N

  3. I am definitely using this for my next one!! Thanks so much Nicole, you are such a sweetheart for all your hardwork you put in your blog for us!!

  4. Oh Thank you Brittney,it is my absolute pleasure!
    I am so glad that it may be helpful.
    xx N

  5. I must be dense -- I am sewing my first sketchbook shirt, and I'm having a ridiculously hard time with the yoke. I just don't understand what the pattern means when it tells me to wrap the yoke around the shirt, sandwich the seams, and sew. Ack! I read your tutorial on the sketchbook shirt, and while it helped, I still cannot figure this yoke out. Help! And thank you.

  6. You are not dense!
    This is a tricky step but once it 'clicks' it al becomes clear.

    I should do a tute with a fabric with a clear right/wrong side.

    I am assuming you have the back yoke sewn.

    Pin the INSIDE back yoke(yoke lining) RIGHT side to the shirt front WRONG side and sew.
    pin it to the shirt front RIGHT side.
    You should then have yoke-front-yoke.

    Sew together.

    Then pull the pieces through until the seam is on the inside.

    I hope this helps.....please come back if it doesn't.
    xx N

    1. PS,I many have swopped which side of the front yoke I started with.
      It doesn't matter as long as you match the correct sides.