Friday, April 11, 2014

Inserting Un-Lined Sleeves In A Lined Bodice Tutorial

  Here's how I sew my lined bodices and unlined sleeves together, with no handstitching. =)

  Start with the shoulder seams sewn on both the lining and outer pieces:

   Prepare the sleeves by gathering if needed, then pin or baste them right sides together with the outer layer, leaving about 1.5 inches free at both sides of the underarm portion of the sleeve:

  Pin the lining piece on top, right sides together. Pin the arm seam, leaving 1.5 inches free at each side of the underarm, and pin around the neckline and back seam. It will look a little lumpy because the bulk of the sleeves inside, just be careful not to catch the sleeves in the neckline or back. Roll them up a little if needed.

  Sew the arm seams, around the neckline, and down the back. For this dress, I only sewed 3/4 of the way down the back seam, but for a dress with a button placket down the whole bodice back, sew all the way down. Make sure you leave that 1.5 inches at each side of the underarm seams! =)

  Clip, notch, trim, and grade your seams as needed, then reach through the shoulder of the front bodice, grab the back bodice piece, and pull it through. Partially through:

  And all the way through:

  Repeat for the other side of the back, and you should have something like this:

  Press all of the seams you just sewed, then sew the sleeve into a tube, right sides together. I did a French seam for mine, but if you do a regular seam you'll want to finish the edges. Match outer to outer and lining to lining and sew all four side seams right sides together. You'll have something almost finished, with a hole at the underarm. Press all of the side and sleeve seams.

  Fold the lining and outer up from that hole so they are right sides together, match the seams of lining, outer, and sleeve, and pin.

  Sew the opening closed, beginning and ending where you've already stitched for the rest of the arm. Trim, clip, and grade as needed, then fold everything back down and press. You will have this on the outside... nice and smooth.

  And the inside should look like this:

  Then all you have to do is repeat for the other sleeve, and you can go on to sew the rest of the dress!

  Let me know if anything is confusing and I'll try to clear it up.  And if you sew up a dress using this method, I'd love to see it! =)

Thanks for stopping by!

28 comments:

  1. This. Is. Brilliant! Thanks for the tutorial. Love it!

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    1. Thank you! I don't get to be brilliant often. =) You are welcome, and I'd love to hear how it works for you if you use it. =)

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  2. FINALLY!!!! I have been searching ALL DAY for a tutorial to explain how this could be done. I can now breathe a sigh of relief that someone actually new I would need this very tutorial. Thank You 1000 times!! Now I can finish my dress.

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    1. Awesome! I'm so glad it was helpful! Thanks for commenting! =)

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  3. Although this is effective and produces a clean finish, I would not use the technique again. I found the stitching around the armscye to be extremely difficult and nerve-wracking! The lining is so easily caught. I also think there is less flexibility in the sleeve for the wearer. I will hand-stitch a lining around the arm in the future. Thank you anyway!

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    1. Thanks for the feedback, Carrie! The stitching around the armscye is a bit fiddly at times, so I see where you are coming from. If you prefer hand-stitching, that's great. This is just a nice alternative for folks who aren't comfortable hand-stitching, or need something a bit faster. I haven't noticed any difference in the sleeve flexibility... I'll have to test an outfit with one sleeve done this way, and one with the lining hand-stitched down and see if there's any difference.

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  4. Thank you so much for this tutorial, it's awesome!!!! So glad that I found it. (bookmarked It)

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    1. Thank you! I hope it works well for you! =)

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  5. Thanks for posting this tutorial, I am slightly confused at the part where the hole at the under arm seam is sewn.... but I haven't actually gotten to this step in my sewing yet. Hopefully everything will fall into place when I actually begin to sew this part.

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    1. You are welcome! If you get to that step in the sewing and are still having trouble, please let me know and I'll see if I can figure out a better way to explain it. =)

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  6. The answer for my problem! I loved! You are amazing!

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    1. Yay! I'm glad it was what you needed. Thank you! =)

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  7. This worked perfectly for me! I was a little nervous to add a puffed sleeve to a sleeveless dress pattern, but it turned out very well. Thanks for the help.

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    1. You are welcome, I'm so glad to hear that it worked for you! =)

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  8. I use this tutorial on baby dress bodices and they come out perfect every time. I love the outcome! Thank you!

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    1. Yay, I'm happy to hear that it's been helpful to you! Thank you for the comment!

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  9. This is a great tutorial, I have used it a few times and with good results. Try to avoid hand sewing if possible !

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    1. Thank you! I'm glad to hear that you liked it. =)

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  10. thank you so much for taking the time to do this, this is exactly what I needed :) x

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    1. You are welcome! I'm glad it was helpful! =)

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  11. Today is my lucky day because I found your very nice tutorial, with pictures too. Look entirely doable! My daughter is adamant about having sleeves to a sleeveless dress I am about to make.... Thanks to your tutorial now I have an idea how to.... All is left is to figure how to put a long zipper on the back (the original pattern doesn't call for a lined dress but I am adding lining). Thanks again for the tutorial:)

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    1. It's definitely fiddly, but I really prefer doing sleeves this way! I hope it works for you! =) You are welcome! =)

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  12. Wonderful tutorial! I've never tried this method but it's great for those doll clothes. Thanks for sharing!!

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    1. Thank you! To be honest, doll clothes are so little and fiddly that I would probably hand-sew the lining on them... this method works a lot better for me on bigger sizes. =) You are welcome!

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  13. Hi, what happens to the center back if it's supposed to be a closed seam? Aren't you going to see the seam when you sew them together? Thanks😊

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    1. If the center back is cut on the fold, or is seamless, the opposite shoulder and sleeve will have to be folded into the one that you are sewing (but not caught in the seam- that's a little difficult to explain without pictures!) so you'll be able to pull everything right side out correctly, and that's true if you sew up the center back seam before finishing the neckline and armscyes as well.

      I would probably leave the center back and about an inch of the back neckline on either side of the center back un-sewn until after the sleeves are inserted, then sew the lining right sides together, the main fabric right sides together, and finally finish the neckline. Hope that helps! =)

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    2. I'm happy to hear that! You are welcome!

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