Sunday, September 27, 2009

Vogue 1127 - More Sleeve Pattern Alteration Info.

There were a couple of questions in the last post about the alterations I made to the sleeves.

Janima the Mom Beast asked,
"I was interested to learn how you give more ease for the upper arm, as I always have to do the same. your method is the one I use-- but don't you add the corresponding increase to the bodice underarm side seam?"

First here is a pic of the alteration I did to the side seams of the pattern piece:

Second, I made this alteration because the normal alteration I make to the sleeve pattern involves putting a seam down the center of the pattern piece, increasing at the bicep area and decreasing back to the seam line.  An example of it can be seen here.  I guess I could have cut the dart apart and made a seam.  However, I like the dart detail so I don't want to lose it.  So I had to come up with an alternate option.

Now to answer Janima's adding width to the sleeve sides in the bicep area has nothing to do with the bodice side seams.  Once you sew the sleeve side seams together, the sleeve is inserted into the jacket.  The instructions from the pattern sheet are below so that you can see the raglan insertion.

So the jacket side seam is not affected at all by increasing the side seams of the sleeve.  And that is not only in this specific case but in every alteration I do for the sleeves.  The area you do have to be careful of affecting is the sleeve cap.  I make no alterations to my sleeve cap AT ALL!

Tracy I hope this also helped you with the visuals...please make sure you click the link to the other post because there are pics there that detail how to make the other alterations that I make to my sleeve pattern to increase the width at the bicep. 

And one more disclaimer...this is the way I handle the alterations.  They work for me.  I have learned them through trial and error and may not be in any of the fitting books that are presently on the take them with a grain of a salt! *smile*

I stopped to take a lunch break and saw the above question so I thought I would answer it sooner rather than later...back to the machines!!!


  1. While I think the "real" pattern appears a bit off, somehow, I have no doubt that you will make it into something enviable. Can't wait to see your finished version.

    Thank you for showing us other plus-size gals that we really can look nice as well as professional.

  2. I'm interested in learning the best way to eliminate excess ease in the sleeve cap. I know I read how to do it somewhere but can't remember where. Would you happen to know how to do that?

  3. Janina The MomBeastSeptember 27, 2009 7:09 PM

    Ah, now I see! Thank you. I usually use the pivot-slide method in Nancy Zieman's Fitting Finesse, but sometimes the increase needed is so drastic she recommends doing "extensions" on both the underarm and bodice underarm seams. I get annoyed with that, as my bust and armhole do not need enlarging!

    I am going to try your two-piece sleeve idea. After all, it's been used in tailoring for ages. And I love the idea of incorporating design features into the seam. Very stylish.

  4. I am really interested in your thoughts on this jacket, as I went and checked the issues other sewers had with this pattern on Patternreview and wondered why I had missed them when I made it up. Maybe because my fabric was a thicker tweed I had a softer shoulder despite the shoulder dart, and lining just the sleeves worked for me in terms of comfort. It is a fun pattern to sew and I am watching for your version.

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