Sunday, June 12, 2011

How to Shorten Sleeves on a Dress Shirt

My cousin, the Yogi, will be getting married in a few weeks and she chose Snuggle Bunny to be her ringbearer.
Not her actual ring bearer pillow, in fact she's not using a pillow.

She's chosen to go a less traditional route with my little brother becoming ordained online to marry them, the men dressed in grey suit jackets, instead of tuxes, and a brunch reception instead of a more elaborate, typical asian wedding banquet.  To this end, she picked out a fantastic suit jacket for SB, which I won't show off until after the wedding, and an adorable bow tie.  We searched and searched for the perfect shirt for him to wear.  She wanted a soft grey that leaned toward violet.  Not the easiest item to find for a 6yr old.  Y finally found a color that she liked, but it was a long sleeve.  A long sleeve shirt and bowtie underneath a jacket, is a bit much to be asking a little tyke to wear in July.  So she looked at me, and asked if I could fix it.  No problem.  Here's what I did.

After laying out the shirt, I laid another of SB's shirts on top of it, matching up the armhole seams.

I cut off the sleeves with a 1" hem allowance.

Next I turned the shirt inside out, and partially ripped out the arm seam.  You can rip it out all the way to the armhole, or if you're lazy like me, just far enough so that you're not messing with the seamed section while hemming.

I turned 1/4" and zigzagged the hem.

Then turned it another 3/4" and hemmed it with a straight stitch.  This ensures a nice neat appearance both outside and inside the sleeve.  I then resewed the bottom seam where I had earlier ripped it out.  Here it is all done.  This was a super quick 20 minute project.

Thanks for popping in and sewing with me.  I'm linking this up to Between Naps on the Porch's Metamorphosis Monday, and Home Stories of A to Z's Tips & Tutorials Tuesdays.
Keeping It SimpleTransformation Thursday


  1. Wow what a great job you did on the sleeves! It sounds like it is going to be such an awesome wedding and I bet he is going to look adorable. Look forward to seeing pictures!!

  2. You are just too clever!!~ Thanks for your sweet comments on my blog.

  3. Happy Tuesday!

    Lovely project~ a true metamorphosis.

  4. Nice project.

    I've converted lots of second hand, long-sleeved white dress shirts into painting shirts because my husband and I are professional house painters and people expect you to show up in white clothes.

    I like your zig zag idea. That makes it easier than turning the hem over twice.

    Thanks for sharing. I'm visiting from Nester's Linky.

  5. Great idea to use an existing shirt as a guide - so clever! I totally thought it would be more difficult to do!

  6. That's a very good job you have done. I like the idea and the shirt really looks like the perfect short sleeve shirt. I have a query for you, what if the dress shirt is of XL/XXL in size & i want to make that into the short sleeve shirt, then shall I resize the whole body fitting or just the sleeves? Any suggestion is good for me.


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