We’re going to stitch them together – match the raw edges of the lower seam allowances, and starting about 1cm behind the roll line, stitch close to the seam through the lower seam allowances to attach them:
Match the shoulder seams and CB notch:
With the two layers now attached the collar will roll as intended as our turn of cloth is built into the pattern.
The open seam reduces bulk.
Now, onto the sleeve, as per the title:
I’m going to set my sleeve in using gathering stitches – if it works for 100% polyester bridal satin, it will work for anything! My fabric – a cavalry twill – is not easy to ease, and using gathering stitches is my favourite method in times like these.
But first I always check from the outside that I have the correct sleeve for the correct armhole:
After yesterday, you now know I have a habit of sewing the wrong parts together…
I pin the shoulder and underarm:
Depending on which sleeve you are setting in, start at either the front or back notch, and sew through the underarm seam to the next notch:
As you reach the gathers, adjust them to fit well between any notches – there is often a slight amount of ease to begin with:
Check the stitching line is straight and parallel with the raw edges, both inside the sleeve and outside:
Put your fist inside the shoulder and check the outside too, for any puckers and bubbles:
It is best to fix them at this stage, rather than cross your fingers and hope the shoulder pad and wadding will hide flaws – they usually don’t, and the amount of unpicking will be tripled! How do I know?!
You can also insert the sleeve with the sleeve lowermost – it’s a little awkward, but the feed dogs help to ease in the sleeve as you sew. I use this method when there is not a lot to ease, or the fabric is easy to work with.
Before the shoulder pad and sleeve head wadding are inserted, give the sleeve head a press. Lay the body panel flat, with the inside of the sleeve showing like so:
Using the tip of your iron, press into the sleeve head about an inch, no further:
Take care not to crease the front and back panels. The aim is to smooth just inside the sleeve head, rather than the seam allowance:
Work your way around the full sleeve circumference this way. The seams are not pressed open like a usual seam. Once again inspect from the outside for any flaws:
I had to reinsert one of my sleeves as they were sitting slightly differently even though the notches were spot on. I think it is because I am using a twill, which
has a mind of it’s own behaves a little differently to an even weave.
Now the epaulettes are attached my coat is looking very airforce, so today I appropriately named it my ANZAC coat. Today is ANZAC day here in New Zealand and Australia – our memorial day for all the servicemen who have fought to keep our countries free, and there are several of them in most NZ families. Lest we forget…