Thursday, November 4, 2010

Tailcoat Sleeve

After plugging along on the tailcoat pattern pretty good, I lost some steam after working on the collar and took a break before getting to the sleeve. I think I'm especially intimidated by the cuff. But now it's time to dive back in!

For the top sleeve pattern I used my original scaled up version of the Tidens Toej pattern. I drafted the undersleeve from the top sleeve, using instructions from Men's Garments. It was very easy - basically you trace off the top half of the sleeve (armhole seam to elbow), then rotate it slightly at the elbow and finish tracing to the bottom edge. No need to true up the pattern, because the underarm seamlines should be the same length. I checked to make sure the sleeve cap was larger than the armhole seam, but since it's supposed to have a little puff at the top I didn't really mess with it.

Reshaped the Undersleeve Sleeve Cap
I stitched a sleeve mockup and quickly looked at it on Chris, not attached to the rest of the coat. Not bad, but a couple adjustments were needed:
- the sleeve cap gathers on the Tidens Toej pattern were too far forward for my taste
- the undersleeve was too high under the arm
- the elbow was too low - raise it just 1"

At first I didn't like the look of the undersleeve seam being so far forward and I was going to move it further back to the underside of the arm. Right before I changed the pattern, I read this post on A Tailor Made It that made me realize that 20th century 2-piece sleeves have much smaller undersleeves than earlier garments. It guess it's my modern sensibility coming through wanting to "fix" it. I still don't love how it looks, but since it's "correct" I'll leave it alone.  Laziness wins again!
Mockup with Corrected Sleeve
There's some schmutz at the back underarm, but
he's got good movement, so I'll leave it for now
and maybe take it out of the final version.

With the blousey shirt on, the coat sleeve looks much tighter than before! The armhole is too tight at the front, but once I scoop that out a little I think I'll be ready for my final mockup! (So tempted to cut into my real fabric, but then I remember how  much it cost and I'm okay with another mockup!)


  1. It's looking great! Ahhh, the things we put our husbands through. Hehehe, it's nice that they are good sports about it and let us do multiple fittings. Of course, if they want to look awesome, they have to let us fit them. :-)

  2. Yeah, if he gets grumpy, I threaten him with having to wear a sloppy outfit - that perks him up real fast! (Because if your wife makes you an outfit, you'd *better* wear it, no matter how bad, right? ;)

  3. Note to not try to get a fitting when he's had a drink!!