Follow on BlogLovin

threadWEAR 301 Logo

threadWEAR 301

Frankie Shirt Sew Along Part Six: Sleeves

Frankie Shirt Sew Along Part Six: Sleeves

Welcome back to the Frankie Sew Along. In this post we are going to tackle the sleeves, which feature an asymmetrical vent. Let's get going!

Using the Pressing with Templates method described in Part Two, press the bottom hem to the wrong side of the Under Sleeve. 

Using the Pressing with Templates method, press the bottom hem to the wrong side of the Upper Sleeve. 

Open out the hems. With right sides together, sew the Under Sleeve to Upper Sleeve at the underarm seam, pivoting at hem foldlines. Clip seam allowance at 2ʺ fold line. Notch out seam allowance at ½ʺ turndown.

Clip seam allowance at 2ʺ foldline. Notch out seam allowance at ½ʺ turndown. Finish seam to 2ʺ hem foldline. Press seam toward Upper Sleeve. Trim remaining seam allowance at hem and press open. 

Press hem in place.

On Under Sleeve, using the Pressing with Templates method, press 1¼ʺ vent hem allowance to wrong side between dots. Press over bottom hem allowance. 

Open out the vent and press the raw edge to previous foldline. Fold again to make a ⅝ʺ-wide finished vent hem. Press both hems in place again. 

Open out bottom hem. Open vent hem to right side, keeping first fold in place. Use a chalk marker to trace a line across bottom of vent hem from dot to vent fold, in line with bottom hem foldline. Stitch.

Turn both hems back into place, tucking bottom hem raw edge under vent hem and press. Both hems will be topstitched later. 

On Upper Sleeve, press vent allowance 1¼ʺ to wrong side. Fold will be even with raw edge of sleeve seam allowance.  

Open out vent allowance. Press raw edge to previous foldline. Fold again to make a ⅝ʺ-wide finished vent hem. Press both hems in place again. 

Open out vent hems. With right sides together, stitch sleeve seam, stopping at dot. 

Turn upper edge of Upper Sleeve vent hem diagonally to wrong side. Pin in place. 

Line up single-fold edge on Under Sleeve vent hem to double-fold edge on Upper Sleeve vent hem just above dot. Starting at top of vent hems, finish sleeve seam. Press seam towards Under Sleeve. 

Important: Work with sleeve wrong side out. Fold Under Sleeve vent up and out of the way. Use a chalk marker to trace a line between dot and finished bottom hem on vent hem of Upper Sleeve. Stitch.

Fold Upper Sleeve vent up and out of the way. Use edgestitch foot to stitch vent hem of Under Sleeve in place. 

On right side of sleeve, trace a line between dot and top end point of Under Sleeve vent stitching. Stitch. 

On sleeve cap, sew a line of basting stitches on seam line between dots. Leave thread tails. 

To show you how to set the sleeve, I'm going to use tips and photos from our Sew Confident! tutorial Anatomy Of A Sleeve, which also contains information on fitting and adjusting sleeve girth. It is important to give the sleeve some shape before beginning to pin it into the armscye. Hold onto the bobbin thread of the easestitching and begin to draw up the sleeve cap, making sure to even out the ease with no puckers.

"Hang" the sleeve on the narrow end of a tailor's ham, aligning the sleeve seamline on the seam of the ham. Steam the seam allowance. Hand press to remove as much as the rippled seam allowance as possible. 

​To start, match the sleeve seam to the side seam of the garment and pin. Match the top of the sleeve to the shoulder seam and pin. Place pins to match the single and double notches. Placing four pins to start is all you need before beginning the easing process. 

Starting at the top of the sleeve (dot) and working on the sleeve side, place your finger under the fabric about ⅝ʺ to one of the top pins. Roll the seam allowance over your finger and place a pin through both layers of fabric, straddling the stitching line. Continue down one side of the sleeve to the side seam, pinning about every ⅝ʺ. Start at the top again and pin the remaining side. This technique of rolling the fabric over your finger automatically builds in the necessary ease. 

Working on the inside of the sleeve and beginning at one notch, machine stitch the sleeve just to the left of the original basting stitch. Sew ⅛ʺ from the seamline in the seam allowance from notch to notch through the underarm. This is an optional step and is used if there will be a lot of strain on a fitted garment. 

To finish the raw edges, position the sleeve opening so you are sewing on the sleeve side and the opening forms a tube. Serge the seam together using a 3-thread stitch formation, or pink the edges. 

Join us for the next, and final, chapter of the Frankie Sew Along as we finish the shirt with hems, buttonholes and buttons. If you have any questions about the project, email betsy@sewingworkshop, or post your question on our Facebook Group. And don't miss the other posts in the Sew Along.

Frankie Sew Along Part One: Measuring and Adjustments

Frankie Sew Along Part Two: Cutting and Marking

Frankie Sew Along Part Three: Sewing the Front

Frankie Sew Along Part Four: Sewing the Back

Frankie Sew Along Part Five: Shoulders and Collar 

Frankie Shirt Sew Along Part Seven: Hems & Buttonh...
Frankie Shirt Sew Along Part Five: Shoulders and C...

Subscribe Now!

Make sure you don’t miss a thing. Complete the simple form below and click “Sign Up” to subscribe to our blog.

Fabric Care

Click here to review details for caring for your fabric.