Facebook Email Pinterest Twitter X Instagram Tiktok Icon YouTube Icon Headphones Icon Favorite Navigation Search Icon Forum Search Icon Main Search Icon Close Icon Video Play Icon Indicator Arrow Icon Close Icon Hamburger/Search Icon Plus Icon Arrow Down Icon Video Guide Icon Article Guide Icon Modal Close Icon Guide Search Icon

Threads Project Guides

Fit & Sew Tops

Guide Home

Video: Quick Tips – How to Adjust Shoulders

Tips on how to adjust shoulders to achieve a better-fitting sleeve

Evamarie Gomez; Shot by: Gary Junken

Fashion designer, patternmaker, and star of One Pattern, Many Ways Angela Wolf is back in her third Q&A video. Watch as she explains how to adjust the shoulder for a better-fitting sleeve- and shares two methods for removing sleeve-cap ease.

We will alert our readers when each video becomes available on our site. Don’t miss the announcements: Sign up for Threads Magazine free weekly newsletters or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

More of Angela’s expert tips and advice.

Lingerie and Swimwear: How Much Elastic is Needed?

Bust Darts: Where and why?

How to Sew with Faux Leather

Adjusting the Waistband on Ready-to-Wear Pants

Previous: Video: Adjusting a Sleeve for a Forward Shoulder Next: Proper Fitting for a Forward Shoulder


  1. user-1100630 | | #1

    Excellent video. I've rotated my sleeve before and I felt horrible doing it. It looked better, but it felt like I was committing some sort of sin. Thanks for the dispensation!

  2. User avater
    Helen_in_Toronto | | #2

    This was a great video. I find that I have to reduce the ease of the sleeve on 90% of my garments. This is especially true when using synthetic fabrics. I wonder if the pattern companies make sleeve patterns assuming the customers will be making wool garments. (Wool can be shaped and "shrunk" into place taking up some of the excess ease. Synthetic fabrics do not behave this way.)I often baste in the sleeve, try on the garment, and if the ease is too much (too puffy, or too many unwanted gathers), I'll re-do it 2-4 times, trimming way a bit each time and basting it in again, and again. Yes, it's a lot of work and somewhat frustrating. But, I wss afraid trim off too much at once.

    Now, with this new info, I'll just measure the sleeve and compare against the armhole, and adjust it, per the video.

  3. user-1109247 | | #3

    Back in the 1960's there was a lady named Lucille Rivers who wrote sewing books for McCall's Magazine..She had extensvie experience in the Garment Industry in NYC.. She used to wear beautiful suits with floral linings and just did wonderful things..
    Lucille also did a video daily for Pfaff that was on our local ABC TV station at noon. She addressed this sleeve problem back then by saying that she thought the patterns companies were drafting the sleeves too large.
    Her solution was to drop the under arm seam of the sleeve down about a half inch on the boddice you were putting the sleeve into..This in effect makes the Armsye bigger. I have tried dropping the sleeve underarm seam down on the garment and it works.. makes the sleeve fit much better and saves a lot of cutting and fitting.
    Loved the video!

  4. BRosser | | #4

    This is such valuable information. My only regret is that I didn't see this video years ago. You have truly helped many sewers! Thanks!

  5. NoraBora | | #5

    She did a good job discussing how to adjust the ease in the sleeve cap; however, I could not understand what she was saying about the shoulder adjustment. I have narrow shoulders and never see anything about making an adjustment to the width, which can effect the setting for the sleeve cap. Could we have her point about that in print?

  6. calebsgran | | #6

    Angela is a teacher that I will be following closely. I have not seen this video but have seen one on pants and was very impressed.

  7. User avater
    LuvThreadsMagazine | | #7

    Gladly will she fit,
    and gladly will she teach.

  8. Mayell | | #8

    I also have very narrow shoulders, and would like more details on that adjustment.

Log in or create an account to post a comment.

Fit & Sew Tops

Fit & Sew Tops

Sew beautiful tops with tips from the experts

View Project Guide

View All Project Guides »

Become a member and get unlimited site access, including the Fit & Sew Tops Project Guide.

Start Free Trial

Basic Torso Adjustments
Bust Fitting
Sleeves and Shoulders
Construction Secrets: Collars, Yokes, Cuffs, Vents, Plackets
Make It Your Own