Shoulder – Baring Sleeves for a Strapless Dress
That little black dress – the strapless number – sure looks lovely on you. Wouldn’t you like to have some more of them? It’s comfortable, it’s gorgeous – what more can you ask from your dress? Well, there’s a fun sewing project you can do that can help you make that strapless number look different any time you want. You’ll appear to have many different dresses when all you do is change the sleeves.
Make removable sleeves and you can give a strapless dress a whole new look in a minute. Purchase stretchy fabric that matches the color of your dress – or not. Stretchy material slides on and off the arm with ease making it the ideal choice. However, you can use material that doesn’t stretch but allow for this when cutting the width. With various fabrics and colors you can make a black dress with black sleeves, a black dress with white sleeves, black and gold, or a dress of a different color with other sleeves.
Make the removable sleeves by just cutting simple sleeves from stretchy fabric. Measure around your arm, add a half an inch, and draw that measurement as the width of the sleeve. Measure the length from below the armpit area to the length you want the sleeves to be – full-length, three-quarter length or even short sleeves.
No matter what type of fabric you are using for the new sleeves, launder it first unless it’s a dry-clean only dress. Lay the fabric out so that it is in a single layer with the right side facing upwards. After cutting out a sleeve, fold the short end under a quarter-inch, then again, and hem across it. Do the same to the opposite side. Now fold the sleeve so that the right sides face each other. Stitch down to make a sleeve seam. You should now have a tube shape that’s hemmed at both ends.
With the dress on, slide the sleeve onto your arm, then mark the small area, under the arm, where the sleeve meets the side of the dress. If you want to make the sleeves permanent, take a few stitches in this area to connect the shoulder-baring sleeve to the dress. Otherwise, use garment tape to hold the sleeve to the dress. Garment tape is sold online and in fabric stores and can be simply removed when you want to change the sleeves, more helpful hints.
Besides short, longer and full-length sleeves, you can change the varieties to suit your mood. Make ones which are puffy, ones with cuffs, sleeves with slits down the outer arm and other versions. The sleeves come up to a little more than halfway on the upper arm and leave the shoulder bare. People will think you have an extended wardrobe when you do this sleeve project that produces many different looks from only one dress.