BigNews.Biz - Apr 30,2012 - How to Sew a Puffed Sleeve T-Shirt
Most of us have T-shirts lingering in our drawers and the back of our closets. Many of these tops follow the same contour, and have the same style of sleeve. Revamping T-shirts only requires a few sewing techniques and a little patience. Puffed sleeves add elegance, beauty and charm to the standard T-shirt. These additions can be created with a few scraps of simple cotton material you probably have lying around.
Turn the T-shirt inside out. Remove the existing sleeves using a seam ripper. Remove any excess thread.
Measure the circumference of the armhole opening on the shirt where you just removed the sleeves from. Add about 8 inches to this measurement. Measure the circumference of the upper-middle part of your arm where you would like the sleeve to hit on your body. Add about 1 inch to this measurement.
Fold your cotton fabric in half and lay it on a flat, even surface. Mark out a bell-shaped sleeve pattern using your measuring tape and a fabric marker. The upper curve line of the bell should match the final armhole measurement from the previous step. Make the tallest part of the bell curve about 10 inches tall. The bottom, flat line of the sleeve pattern should match the arm circumference measurement from the previous step.
Cut out the bell-shaped sleeve pattern using a sharp pair of scissors. Cut through both layers of fabric to create two matching sleeve patterns.
Lay the T-shirt in front of you, still inside out. Take the top tip of one curved sleeve piece and pin it to the top shoulder seam of the armhole opening on the T-shirt with the right sides of the fabric facing. Fold over about a half inch of fabric on the sleeve piece next to this center pin to create a pleat and pin it in place. Repeat on the opposite side from the center pin. Continue to pin the sleeve cap in place creating small pleats at the top of the sleeve until the two ends of the sleeve meet at the bottom seam of the T-shirt. Repeat with the other sleeve and armhole. Be sure to leave about an inch of fabric at the bottom of each sleeve to close the sleeves.
Sew the sleeves into place using a sewing machine and a straight stitch. Sew along the small, straight edge of each sleeve right next to the torso seam to close the sleeves.
Fold up about a half inch of fabric around the bottom circumference of each sleeve to create a hem and pin it in place. Sew along each sleeve hem. Turn the T-shirt right side out.
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