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PatternMaker Drafting Sofware for PC.
In this site, you will find tutorials, pattern drafting instructions, sewing instructions and many other sewing projects.
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Sewing instructions
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PatternMaker Sewing Projects:
Jacket with removable sleeves

Types of fasteners

If you want to sew a jacket with removable sleeves, there are many alternatives. As fasteners you can use

1) zippers
2) buttons
3) no-sew snaps
4) fabric- or leather-covered snaps
5) snap tape
6) hook-and-loop tape (Velcro)

Preparing the armscyes

Armscye facings

The sleeves can be fastened to the armscyes without no changes in the shell pieces. The fasteners can be hidden (picture 1) or visible (picture 2). In these design alternatives the armscyes are finished with facings. Facing must be topstitched - unless you use zippers and the lapped application as suggested below - to keep the sleeves in place when fastened under the facings.

How to draft facings to the armscys and the sleeve caps using the editing tools of Patternmaker is described in Exercise 24 in the Design Tutorial: "Drafting facings".

When using zippers as fasteners, use the lapped application to hide the zipper under the lap. This method is described in "Attaching zipper to pants or skirt" in the General Sewing instructions. Topstitch the lap with hand stitching, machine blind stitching or plain maching stitching.

Armscye with a flange or a pleat

The fasteners can be hidden under a flange (picture 3) or pleat (picture 4).

Alter the front pattern pieces according to the pictures to the left.

Preparing the sleeve cap

Always sew the side seam of the shell and the sleeve seams before attaching fasteners or facings to them.

If you use zipper you can attach it directly to the sleeve cap. Use added seam allowance (picture 5A) to be able to place the zipper 0.5-1 cm outwards from the original sleeve cap seam line.

After having sewn one edge of the zipper to the sleeve cap, close the zipper and position the sleeve under the armscye matching armscye edge and the original sleeve cap seam. Baste or pin the other edge of the zipper to its place. Topstitch it from the right side of the armscye. The zipper will be hidden under the zipper lap.

Another way is to sew a facing to the sleeve cap and sandwich the zipper between the sleeve cap and the facing (picture 5B).

The third alternative is to sew another armscye facing and to attach sleeve to it as you would sew the sleeve to the garment armscye (picture 5C). Sandwitch zipper between the sleeve and the facing. If you use buttons, snaps or pieces of hook-and-loop tape, sew them to the facing sewn to the sleeves and the the counter parts to the armscye facings.

Whichever alternative you choose you have to secure that the sleeve cap ease is preserved. Here is a good method to handle the cap ease.

Cap ease

When using the dropped sleeve design there is no need to use ease in the sleeve cap. If you use a fitted sleeve cap design you have to secure that the sleeve cap ease is preserved.

Here is a good method to handle the cap ease. Cut a 5 cm/2" wide bias fabric strip or from a stretchy fabric. Fold it in two and sew to the sleeve head as in the photo at the distance of the seam allowance from the edge stretching the strip as much as possible when sewing.

The strip will gather the sleeve cap and is very easy to handle when sewing sleeves to the garment. The strip also gives the needed support to the sleeve cap and gives it a nice, round shape. When attaching a zipper to the sleeve cap - or the sleeve to the armscye - stitch to the ditch i.e. along the earlier stitch line.

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