Banksia Sewalong: basting & placket preparation

October 3rd, 2012

This part might sound a bit boring – but it’s necessary, i promise.

I think the whole key to a good placket is preparing properly, and taking it slowly and calmly. We’re also going to chat a bit about staystitching and basting the neckline of the Banksia.

Ready set sew!

I’ve noticed some people have had issues with their collars and necklines not matching up. I believe this is an issue caused by the neckline stretching out in the process of putting the top together. Because of this, i think it might be helpful if you have a loose fabric to staystitch around the neckline before you go to far in the project.

Basically staystitching is just sewing around the edge (i go just under the seam allowance) in order to stabilize the fabric.

The next bit of prep is basting for the placket.

It helps a lot to follow the basting guide shown on the pattern – and i’m going to share a┬áreally easy way to do it.

First choose which placket you are going to do, option 1 or 2, and then cut along the basting guide in the pattern, till it comes away.

Now tape it to a scrap piece of paper.

Fold in half, and cut around the edge. You will now have a full placket guide.

Pin it to the top, using the pattern bodice front as a guide. Also don’t underestimate the importance of a ruler. I always measure on each side, at various points all the way up the placket, just to make sure it’s all inline.

Head over to your sewing machine, and sew around the guide. Don’t worry too much i you sew on the paper, you can easily rip it out.

One tip to remember, be careful of the tape – sometimes when i sew over tape it gets stuck on the presser foot. So you may want to either put it tape side down, or use a walking foot.

And now you have perfect placket basting!

We’ll be doing the collar next, and placket options after that. I’ll be sharing a faux placket too for those who are really feeling too scared to try the placket, but still want the look of it. So i you think you’re probably going to go for the faux placket, or even leave the placket off – you can leave the placket basting step off your to do list!



13 Responses

  1. Ruth says:


    I thought this was known as ‘staystitching’? Thanks for the sewalong, it’s very helpful!


    • Meg says:

      Hi Ruth!! You’re absolutely right, it is! I was just trying to find an easier way to describe it, as i’ve noticed a lot of new sewers get confused by that term. But i can see i’ve actually made things worse by making those who know what staystitching is confused :) I think i better amend to avoid more confusion!

      • Ruth says:


        Wow, that’s great customer service! Thanks! Now I know the method by both terms. You’re very helpful, thank you.


  2. Sann says:

    Great tip on stay stitching and the placket basting, I had issue with the placket and the collar did appear to stretch without the stay stitch.

    • Meg says:

      HI Sann! I’m glad to hear that helps – so sorry you had issues before! I hope the staystitching will help everything fit together a bit more easily next time :) xoxo

  3. Liz S says:

    loving all your instructions…I better start mine soon!

    • Meg says:

      Thanks Liz! So glad you’re enjoying the instructions! I hope it helps when you start yours! hugs xoxo

  4. angela says:

    The instructions are fabulous. Thank you so much. It is great to have helpful instructions like this to take you through the process.

    Guess I better get started today so I can keep up.

    • Meg says:

      Angela i’m so glad you’re finding the tutorials helpul!! Don’t worry about when you start :) we’ve still got a few weeks, and the posts will stay up forever (and ever hehehe). Can’t wait to see what you make!

  5. […] Now we pin the collar to the top. The important thing here is to make sure the edge of the collar butts right up to the intersection of the placket basting stitches and the neckline staystitching. […]

  6. […] The most important thing about plackets is going slowly and preparing. If you haven’t done your basting yet – you here’s the post from last week. […]

  7. […] First things first. To make things easier i’ve left the collar off for this – and i’ll show you how to add it for the faux placket. So we’ll start with the top looking like this. For this one i just staystitched the neckline – but if you still want the placket guidelines, then you could baste that like last week. […]