I'm glad to have found this website and I hope I can learn a great deal as well as contribute as far as my ignorance takes me.
I began learning to sew about 4 months ago and have been practicing shirt making with David's book. I'm content with what I've learned thus far, but I'm rather exhausted trying to find a solution to correct the way the sleeve is fitting.
I'm including a few pictures so a fit assessment can be made possible. I would be glad to take any other pictures that might help you see any fitting issues:
Let me begin by explaining how I've created these patterns:
My measurements were taken by a family member, followed by the sloper that I drafted with instructions from this book:
The sloper was then fitted with a gingham broadcloth and corrections were extensively made around the shoulder blades, as well as some smaller changes elsewhere. The family member folded up the fabric around the shoulder blade where the arm connects in a horizontal dart-like manner. I took this idea from Donald McCunn
I'm not a fan of darts however, so with the fabric pinned as it was, I drew a smooth curve to center back to shape the back in order to avoid the dart. This part had me a little confused because the fabric pinned should, from what I've read, smooth out to zero pinned fabric as you approach center back, but instead, there was some fabric also pinned at center back. We had it pinned because an otherwise unsightly pucker would result at center back along the shoulder blade level. I imagined this was so because a substantial amount of fabric was pinned at both ends of the sloper along at that level. A horizontal section equal to the pinned amount at center back along the shoulder blade level was then removed. Judging by the looks of things, it doesn't seem like it was a mistake to take that section out, but I'll let you be the judge of that by looking at the pictures.
My concern with the sleeve is the following:
I've basted on the sleeve several times trying a few things. The sleeve you see set in is the best I've been able to do. The choice of sleeve cap was decided from the same book regarding the sloper. The author suggests establishing a sleeve cap by subtracting the top shoulder to wrist bone sleeve length from the underarm to wrist bone sleeve length ( just past the wrist bone anyway). This resulting measurement was 7. I began to think perhaps this number was too high, considering every site I've found discussing caps mentions 6 to be the limit. I basted the same sleeve, having lowered the cap to 6 and raising the underarm length about 1/2 inch, although I guess I should have risen it exactly the amount I lowered the cap, one inch. I also eased the sleeve when I tried a 6 inch cap height. A lowered cap, raised armhole, and eased in manner didn't prove more comfortable, specifically in the front armscye, which I found to be a bit tighter. It felt tight at the top of the shoulder as well, not a problem I encountered with a 7 inch cap. I did not ease in the 7 inch cap because I presume too much would have to have been eased. The chest circumference did decrease somewhat because the sleeve at 7 inches was not wide enough in the bicep width to reach the back side seam - back armscye juncture. I did not re cut a sleeve with a wider bicep line because I'm content with that width.
Do some of you increase the bicep width in a situation like this to meet the side seam - armscye seam juncture and taper the sleeve accordingly to reach a similar silhouette that the previous width had?
For the 7 inch cap, when pinning the center sleeve to the center shoulder line, as instructed in David's book, I found it was only the back cap curve that was short of length, about an inch. The front curve met up fine.
My main concern is getting rid of the creases in the back portion of the sleeve cap seen in the picture of the back of the shirt. Do you guys consider sleeve pitch for shirting as well or is it only for jackets?
This is my first time trying to explain everything so extensively. I apologize if things are confusing and unclear. Please let me know if anything needs further explanation.
Some questions I have:
Is the author's method of establishing a sleeve cap correct?
Are tailors easing sleeves when shirts are so close fitting and was I right to ease starting from the notches about 3 inches from the sleeve seams (see sleeve shot) ? The author suggested dividing the armscye lengths by 3 and placing a notch on both sleeve cap and scye. In addition, the author suggests measuring the front armscye length along the front cap curve, marking it, doing the same for the back curve, and then establishing a mid point beween the two and marking that as your shoulder seam point.
If tailors are easing, does 1 3/4" of ease in the sleeve cap for a 22 inch armscye sound correct (author's suggestion)?
How do the two armscyes looks in the last picture? The higher one has the 1/2 inch extension I added. Keep in mind both have a 1/8" seam allowance (I've practiced sewing a 1/4" felled seam).
How are people cutting the chest widths for front and back? Perhaps our measuring was inaccurate, but my back width was equal to chest width. I have a defined back so I didn't consider this odd. Since I added a 1 1/4 inch box pleat, I cut the back pattern a little narrower than the front pattern but perhaps not narrow enough. Half of the back measures 10 1/4 while half of the front measures 10 1/2. With the pleat, half of the back measures 11 1/2.
Should I cut an even narrower width in the back chest and fuller width in the front chest so there isn't a resulting 2 inches wider for the entire back (23= entire back 21= entire chest) ? I think this could eliminate some drape in the back.
I greatly appreciate any help and thank you for allowing me to be a forum member. I hope my first post hasn't been too demanding.
Note: I think I may have pulled on the collar too much when sewing and I had trouble overlapping it, so it's rather open in the pictures where the buttoning occurs. Also, I haven't finished it nor did it have interfacing, so please excuse it all together, haha.
Edited by Che Pasticcio, 22 November 2010 - 01:19 PM.