Have you ever knit the perfect sweater with a lovely wide neck only to realize that when you knit this top down little number you forgot to use the smaller needle size that was recommended for the ribbing resulting in the collar being just a tad wider than you would like? I did that and since it's top-down, I can't take it out and redo it like I could if it was knit bottom-up. Or maybe you have a favorite sweater that the neckline has stretched out on. Whatever the reason, I have a solution to fix the issue!
A crochet slip stitch has no give to it what so ever. Knowing this, I decided to crochet a slip stitch chain along the back of my collar. I was going to go around the entire collar but I achieved the desired result by just crocheting across the back. For the purpose of the tutorial I used a different color yarn than my collar. When done in the same color it's very hard to see it. Let's get started!
Top left corner of the above picture: Starting at the far right end of the collar (as it's facing you) insert the crochet hook into the "V" that is a stitch.
Top right corner: Lay your yarn over the hook (no need to make a slip knot).
Bottom left corner: Pull the yarn though the stitch
Bottom right corner: Insert the hook into the next "V" stitch, yarn over the hook and pull through. There will be 2 loops on your hook now.
Top picture: Pull the first loop through the second and that is one slip stitch made. Be sure not to yarn over before pulling the loop through as that will be a single crochet.
Bottom picture: Crochet a slip stitch in 3 stitches, skipping the 4th stitch and repeating across to the far left of the collar. Cut the yarn and pull through the remaining loop.
Here is what the slip stitch crochet chain will look like on the inside.
Here is what it will look like on the outside. When done in the same color as the collar it is not visible. This sweater has an asymmetrical collar, it was intentional LOL To make this even more undetectable you could crochet the slip stitch right at the point where the color changes. Regardless, when using the same color it's very hard to see.
As you can see by the photo above, I tightened up my collar 1 inch by using this technique!
I liked the collar to begin with but for fear that my bra strap might peak through, tightening the collar gives me that little extra comfort level. I really love wide necklines and boat neck style sweaters but I have a thing about bra straps showing. So this technique has come in really handy for a couple of my sweaters that I have but probably didn't wear as often as I wanted due to the neck being a little too loose!
I hope that this technique will help to get a few sweaters off the shelves and back in rotation where they should be! Do you have another way to tighten up a loose collar? I love to hear from you and learn new tricks!