|This zipper trick works for any neck that has a binding or trim where you want it to be clean at the top, but don't want a facing (as in most knits and sweaters).
Essentially the zipper is like a little tiny facing. Set the zipper to a 1/2" seam allowance right sides together with a single stitch close to the teeth.
Stitch your neck trim/collar on (serged or straight stitch), leaving the zipper tape out of the equation at the ends. Then flip the zipper tape to the outside as if it were a facing and stitch the end of the tape along the same stitch line of the collar. This is a very short little seam and needs to be manipulated carefully so that the zipper tape is not too far over. Turn the tape back to the inside. Now the top is clean.(Easy to rip and re-do once you turn the tape back and check your finish.)
When you flip it back, the end is clean. In the photo attached, the neckline had one side of a knit binding set in with the collar. I finished the end of the zipper tape as above, and then went back and topsitiched the turned under edge of the binding. That's why you see the topstitch goes all the way around the collar right up to the end, but the end is cleaned with the zipper.
A couple of tips:
>Don't clip the end of the zipper tape until you've stitched the ends.
>Don't have your seam allowance where you are stitching the zipper tape be wider than the zipper tape. Ideally it should hide just under the tape.
>Inside neckbinding for collars is not necessary, only if you want a totally clean finish. If you do opt for binding, it can be single and then turned and topstitched; or if your binding fabric is thin enough you can set it in double right along with your collar. Woven bias is OK, or crossgrain knit as well.
>For garments with neck binding rather than collars, such as on a zip front jewel neck cardigan, you can clean the top of the binding and placket edge with the zipper this way.
>Works with ribbon plackets as well as zippers!