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23 April, 2015

Right, where was I? I hadn't forgotten about this, just busy off getting a new job, and starting to plan relocation, so not much time for sewing. Sleeves.

Last minute, I had a change of heart about sleeves. All that work tailoring the front, shoulders, collar, and lapels, only to add straight sleeves? My cursory research on adapting sleeves to be tailored indicated it would e a whole lot of work. Luckily for me, my runner up in the “what coat should I make” pattern, and one that I also purchased was McCalls 6800. This has two piece tailored sleeves, and I figured being from the same pattern family would hopefully be drafted from the same basic shape.

The size 16 from M6800 had the same bicep circumference as the size 14 from V8346 (which was my starting point), so I went with that. Placing the two pieces together, the armscye line seemed the same so I went with it.

Because I had added in an extra 1cm at my side seams, I added an extra 1cm at the back seam at the armscye, tapering to nothing at the elbow.

For all my careful muslin making at earlier stages, I pretty much just with this and hoped it would work. I didn't have enough fabric for new pieces, so cut the upper arm out of the existing already cut sleeve pieces, and new under arm pieces. This left the upper arm a bit short on the hem, and I Hope I would either need to shorten the sleeve, or could get away with a shallower hem.

The photo shows the quite substantial change in shape, and it really made a difference to the finished coat.

Once they were set in, using a bias strip of hair canvas to both ease the sleeve cap and pad it (as per my for this project, the Tailoring book), I measured the sleeves to 1″ beyond my wrist one, and found I could lop an inch off the bottom. Yes, I had got very bored of muslin making by the time I got to the sleeves.

While I'm on the subject of sleeves, I'm going to talk about lining them here. “The Book” suggested inserting sleeve linings by machine by seeming the bottom edge together, pushing the lining inside and then hand stitching the armscye. It also suggests cutting the lining piece the same length as the garment piece, and adding an extra cm at the underarm.

I did this and had linings that kept wanting to poke out (and yes I did chop off the same amount I decided to chop off the outer). At this stage I wasn't going to restitch the armscye seam, so I snipped the lining close to where I stitched the hems together, chopped off and inch altogether of lining and handstitched it to my already handstitched in three goes with hair canvas hems. This is an awful lot of hand stitching for a machine tailored coat, and next time I will: 1. Make sure the lining is shorter than the sleeve, and 2. Insert the lining to the body lining by machine and handstitched the hem in place after. Or maybe follow one of the many tutorials in garment origami to bag the whole thing including the sleeve hems by machine.


2 Comments leave one →
  1. 28 April, 2015 1:01 pm

    Bag your coats! Once I finally figured it out it was like magic! I used Kathleen Fassenella’s tutorial at fashion incubator.

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