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Armpit gussets on Norfolk jackets


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#19 Kerry

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Posted 20 October 2010 - 06:44 PM

For reference here are some from Vincent CPG 1898 (part 9)

The Workers Sleeve:
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Not he states: "This sleeve will have far more loose material at the top of hindarm, but those customers who especially desire ease will not mind that, provided they get plenty of freedom of movement for the movements of their arms."



And as a bonus, a draft of a Norfolk with a sleeve that is very extended and runs right into the body.
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Edited by theatrical tailor, 20 October 2010 - 07:38 PM.


#20 Nishijin

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Posted 20 October 2010 - 07:36 PM

Please, let us all try to use the correct words.

There is no such thing as a "Norfolk sleeve". Do not create that here, we'll see it everywhere on the internet soon, and customers will start to ask for them to tailors who will sound like incompetent because they will never have heard of them.

On the last draft, there is a pivot sleeve set on a Norfolk jacket. The sleeve is not what defines the Norfolk. Many have regular sleeves, no pivot sleeve nor gussed, sewn nor grown-on.
Norfolk is defined by its belt, the pleats in the front chest that form "suspenders" to carry the heavy hip pockets (which are made to put ammonition), and the action pleats in the back, either at center back or at the sides. There usually is a yoke, to accomodate the pleats, but it's not mandatory (well, one need to have a yoke either on the front or the back, but not always both).


The "worker sleeve" is nothing but a sleeve with the arms hanging forward. It does give better front mobility as the back hindarm is longer. I think that's also how would be cut a coat for some equestrian garments (depends on where the customer keeps his arms while riding).




Svenn : growing on the gusset is not what I meant. You asked about a comparison between a regular sleeve and a sleeve with a gusset, I concurred to Sator's idea that the best would be to make both of them and compare.
Having made myself a gusset ("grown-on", but this is not that important) on a coat where I had cut a bad armscye, I can testify that a gusset does add mobility. But I never made one when the armscye was correct. I've never tried the pivot sleeve, with is not the same as adding a gusset.



I wonder about the use for the gusset in shooting jackets. I presume these coats would be worn with a jumper underthem, to keep warm (I'm not a hunter myself, but I don't think I would go with just a shirt under my coat). As jumpers armscye are usually pretty low, the coat could not have as high armscye as we like to cut them. So adding a gusset could restore the lost mobility. Ditto for the pivot sleeve, which seems to preserve mobility while cutting a more "opened" armscye, giving room to what's worn under the coat.
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#21 Kerry

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Posted 20 October 2010 - 07:40 PM

Please, let us all try to use the correct words.

There is no such thing as a "Norfolk sleeve". Do not create that here, we'll see it everywhere on the internet soon, and customers will start to ask for them to tailors who will sound like incompetent because they will never have heard of them.


edited to add missing "with a"

#22 greger

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Posted 22 October 2010 - 04:17 PM

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Here are some different sleeves.

The red and yellow are normal suit sleeves, though the yellow looks rather hollow. The blue certainly adds more movement (better for sports coats).

The green was used into at least the 1880s. People rode horses and sat on wagon benches in those days, so some movement would be handy.

Last, but not least, is the 1808 model. Maybe that was the end of its use by then. A cut the military used, and probably used by many others. Should have flipped it for better comparision with the others.

#23 Nula

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Posted 29 October 2010 - 05:58 AM

Definition of a gusset:

(Clothing, Personal Arts & Crafts / Knitting & Sewing) an inset piece of material used esp to strengthen or enlarge a garment.

A triangular insert, as in the seam of a garment, for added strength or expansion.


That is, it is an added inset that is separately sewn on or "cut on". Norfolk jackets do not have any such inset in the sleeves, or for that matter anywhere else. Nor do Norfolks necessarily have a pivot sleeve.

The author of the Threads article further incorrectly uses the term "cut on" to mean "grown on".


Some professionals do use the term "cut-on gusset". It depends on which system they trained in.

#24 Der Zuschneider

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Posted 30 October 2010 - 03:51 AM

DZ Shooting jackets need sleeves that will not restrict the wearer when the rifle (or gun) is held to the shoulder, when firing.


Yeah, that makes sense. In the forum somewhere there is a conductor's sleeve maybe that helps.

The Kimono drafts have cut on 'Triangel Zwickel' for range movement. Probably that is the gusset. Never seen on a norfolk draft.
A high arm scye also helps to lift the arm.
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#25 Svenn

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Posted 30 October 2010 - 02:39 PM

Posted Image

Here are some different sleeves.

The red and yellow are normal suit sleeves, though the yellow looks rather hollow. The blue certainly adds more movement (better for sports coats).

The green was used into at least the 1880s. People rode horses and sat on wagon benches in those days, so some movement would be handy.

Last, but not least, is the 1808 model. Maybe that was the end of its use by then. A cut the military used, and probably used by many others. Should have flipped it for better comparision with the others.


Could you help a newbie understand what those pics represent? are they the two halves of the sleeve? how does the different curvatures reflect what others have said on this thread?

#26 Schneidergott

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Posted 30 October 2010 - 04:12 PM

Could you help a newbie understand what those pics represent? are they the two halves of the sleeve? how does the different curvatures reflect what others have said on this thread?


To put it simply: The more the undersleeve goes up (the distance between top of sleeve crown and bottom of undersleeve seam becomes smaller), the wider the range of movement.
Check here

For comparison:

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The owner of this tailcoat wanted his sleeves to be firmly fused so there would not be any wrinkles when he had his arms up. But it must be very unpleasant to wear with the arms down.
"Beauty knows no pain!" :spiteful:

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#27 greger

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Posted 30 October 2010 - 04:21 PM

Schneidergott, Tailors used to put canvas in sleeve.

#28 Svenn

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Posted 31 October 2010 - 02:56 AM

The owner of this tailcoat wanted his sleeves to be firmly fused so there would not be any wrinkles when he had his arms up. But it must be very unpleasant to wear with the arms down.
"Beauty knows no pain!" :spiteful:


By 'no wrinkles', do you mean he wanted no resistance/restriction on his arms when they were raised? Also, how would it be uncomfortable with his arms down? Would it be tight on the underside of the arm? That protruding fold on the back of the shoulder looks very similar to the dancer's sleeve that was posted elsewhere.

#29 Nishijin

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Posted 01 November 2010 - 09:36 AM

No wrinkles means no wrinkles. No folds in the cloth. Everything perfectly smooth.
Am I wrong presuming this was made for a conductor ?

"Fold on the back" is unavoidable when the arms are done. This coat is made to be worn arms up nearly all the time. The arms would be down only to walk to/from the conductor's place, and when saluting (while the public sees the front, not the back). It is not an ordinary coat, nor just a coat with more ease of movement.
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#30 Schneidergott

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Posted 01 November 2010 - 04:05 PM

Nope, this was/ is meant for ballroom dancing.
And the reason why it has become so uncomfortable when the arms are down is the fusing inside, which made it very stiff.
The original coat (depicted in the first image) was made of a heavier and stiffer fabric (way above 400gr. per meter), while the one in the second picture was around 300gr. the most. My colleague had to entirely fuse the sleeves twice. That means he also had to take out and set in the sleeves twice. And he got different zones of stiffness.

What I was wondering about was the positioning of the sleeve seams, which are so "in your face"!

Posted Image

"Nur der ist Meister seiner Kunst, der immer sucht, das Gute zu verbessern und niemals glaubt, das Beste schon zu haben."
"Only he is a master of his art who always seeks to improve the good and never believes to have the best already"

http://www.dressedwell.net/ It's snarky, but fun.


#31 Der Zuschneider

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Posted 01 November 2010 - 04:29 PM

Unbelievable what SG has seen in his tailor work. The sleeve looks like a pipe now, with no sleeve head. :Thinking:
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#32 Nishijin

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Posted 01 November 2010 - 09:03 PM

Why are we talking about the "demise of German tailoring" when you have such unusual things... This is a very strange sleeve indeed.

Are the arms kept always up, in ballroom dancing too ? It seems so :
Posted Image
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#33 Schneidergott

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Posted 01 November 2010 - 10:21 PM

I think that is only true for the "standard" dances. But little wrinkles still appear, so I wonder why this man wanted a really stiff sleeve. Perhaps he wasn't such a good dancer and wanted to impress the judges with his immaculate sleeves?



For the more "sweaty" dancing they skip the body coat... And the chest hair... :spiteful:


"Nur der ist Meister seiner Kunst, der immer sucht, das Gute zu verbessern und niemals glaubt, das Beste schon zu haben."
"Only he is a master of his art who always seeks to improve the good and never believes to have the best already"

http://www.dressedwell.net/ It's snarky, but fun.


#34 Terri

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Posted 01 November 2010 - 10:56 PM

Nope, this was/ is meant for ballroom dancing.
And the reason why it has become so uncomfortable when the arms are down is the fusing inside, which made it very stiff.
The original coat (depicted in the first image) was made of a heavier and stiffer fabric (way above 400gr. per meter), while the one in the second picture was around 300gr. the most. My colleague had to entirely fuse the sleeves twice. That means he also had to take out and set in the sleeves twice. And he got different zones of stiffness.

What I was wondering about was the positioning of the sleeve seams, which are so "in your face"!

Posted Image


It's too bad the front seam wasn't left where it should be and a different approach taken.
That being said, people demand the strangest things sometimes. I find that on occassion when a client (an actor for instance) starts demanding strange chnges and finds problems where none existed before, there is usually another problem that has nothing to do with the clothes but they cannot deal with it so the clothes or costume become a substitute.

#35 Schneidergott

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Posted 02 November 2010 - 12:21 AM

This is famous dancer/ actor Fred Astaire with a more conservative approach:

Posted Image

The wrinkles are very prominent...

"Nur der ist Meister seiner Kunst, der immer sucht, das Gute zu verbessern und niemals glaubt, das Beste schon zu haben."
"Only he is a master of his art who always seeks to improve the good and never believes to have the best already"

http://www.dressedwell.net/ It's snarky, but fun.


#36 jeffrey2117

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Posted 01 May 2013 - 08:53 PM

I recently came upon an article detailing among other things how gussets in the armpit area were used in Norfolk jackets for high mobility, including a reference on the Fedora Lounge about their use on the Burberry jacket of mountain-climber George Mallory (died on Mt. Everest). http://www.threadsma...8/cut-on-gusset

The gusset shown as an example in the article (below) seems to spring out of a very low armhole however... I'm wondering, do or did tailors ever combine a very high, fitted armscye with a gusset to achieve high mobility? If so, am I incorrect that there might be a problem of the gusset 'bagging out' of the armpit area it's supposed to stay concealed in? With regards to that, I saw a Phitwell jacket made by Dege on the londonlounge that has pleats on the back which spring shut with concealed elastic cords (see: http://www.thelondon...php?f=36&t=6309 )... would such mechanics be possible in an armpit gusset? Or is there a better solution?

btw, are there any tailors who make Norfolk or shooting jackets anymore besides Dege?

Posted Image



Hello Swenn,

Replying to an old, but interesting post from 2010, concerning gussets and pivot sleeves.

I have just a couple of days ago, drafted out a golf jacket with pivot sleeves from Cutter & tailors, A.G. Chaudry 1970 book, pages 47-49.

The jacket body coat drafts armscye seems to be cut in a similar manner as the coat in the photo above.

The draft that I am referring, was also posted by Sator under, "The Golf Jacket". See page 48 of the draft

http://www.cutterand...h=1

I was unable to upload the photo of the draft I made for you to view in this reply.

This original draft from the C&T Book that I have is missing directions for the final points of 18 through 22 on the sleeve draft, and collar diagram are missing.

A person interested in this draft would have to finish that yourself, unless someone on the forum has this missing information they would share with us.

Kind regards

Jeffrey2117

Edited by jeffrey2117, 01 May 2013 - 08:58 PM.

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