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Tips & Techniques > Inserting sleeves

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Posted by: regine
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About regine star
Member since: 9/26/05
Reviews: 45 (tips: 14)
Skill level:Intermediate
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Posted on: 7/30/12 2:55 PM
Review Rating: Helpful by 3 people   Very Helpful by 5 people   
My sewing teacher taught me to sew two parallel lines at the sleeve head by machine and then draw up the threads until the sleeve fits into the armhole. I always had trouble with this method. The other day I was putting sleeves into a tailored jacket and I hand tacked the sleeve head. I had much better control over the gathering and the sleeve fitted in perfectly.

Then I tacked the sleeve in, tried it on and then only sewed it by machine.

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Alice said... (8/9/12 9:56 AM) Reply
I have found that if you place the sleeve section on the bottom and the garment on top...the feed dogs will do the easing for you. Perhaps, another way would be to ONLY do the sleeve first w/o sewing to the garment using the method where you place an index finger behind the foot and that way the feed dog will do the easing needed....then try pinning the sleeve in place. I think I like the method Cherylwashere used but I think it needs to be re-written because it was a bit confusing to seemed repetitive in a couple of spots. Maybe a video would help, if she could do that.
regine said... (8/4/12 12:26 PM) Reply
Thank you Cheryl, sounds interesting, will try it next time.
cherylwashere said... (8/3/12 10:29 AM) Reply
Our Home Economic teacher taught us that method many, many years ago...for me some 50 years ago. I have been using an easier method that works well for me... I do not sew up the side seams first...nor do I sew up the sleeve seam... I do sew the shoulder seams first... Now, always having right sides together... match and pin the center of the sleeve arch to the shoulder seam... match and pin the sleeve notch to the front and back section notches ... snip fabric where you need to to ease both to fit together and pin... sew the arched part of sleeve to the front and back sections... right sides together match the notches on the sleeve and pin... match front and back section notches and pin... match your sleeve edge and front and back section edges to meet and pin...match front and back sections together and pin... match sleeve edges together and pin... now sew one continuous seam from the edge of the sleeve to the edge of the front and back sections...or vice versa. Your easy too.
regine said... (8/3/12 2:16 AM) Reply
Hi Celia, I am so pleased to hear that you have had the same experience as I have. Maybe the teachers do not always have the best methods.
CeliaK said... (8/2/12 6:29 PM) Reply
regine, I've been sewing for a really long time and must have had the same sewing teacher. I, too, put gathered sleeves in the way you described -- AND HAVE FOREVER. Last year, I was making 12 lined, costume jackets with gathered, set in sleeves. I just could not get the sleeves to go in. Finally, like you, I hand-basted the sleeve cap and voilá, it went in perfectly. I'm now a convert. I'll take the few extra minutes (maybe 5) and do the hand-basting. Good for us!
waltzqueen said... (8/2/12 1:03 PM) Reply
Gee- I also hate the parallel lines method but never thought to just sew it. You're a genius!
regine said... (8/1/12 11:33 AM) Reply
thanks Annie
Annie- oh said... (8/1/12 9:30 AM) Reply
This is a very helpful tip, and an addition to handsewing skills, thanks.
regine said... (7/31/12 0:42 AM) Reply
Hello Annie, Yes it is the same.
Annie- oh said... (7/30/12 7:00 PM) Reply
Help, help: is hand tacking the same as hand sewing (a line for gathering)? Thanks.
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