Baggy loose sweater sleeves - how to fix?
November 16, 2020 3:01 PM   Subscribe

I have a delightful soft sweater and I’ll be wearing it as a warm layer everyday, now that it’s getting cold out. The sleeves are getting baggy and loose, and if I stand up and shake them out, the cuffs fall past my fingers and I picture them catching on fire when I try to cook. Quarantine has not been kind to me and my reactions to this range from irritation to rage. Nothing about quarantine is going to get better for a while but maybe I can fix this sweater.

I always wind up pushing up my sleeves on all my long-sleeved clothing, if I do that with this sweater they loosen in a matter of minutes. Ideally I’d like narrower sleeves with some kind of long durable cuffs.
This is an old black cashmere sweater with sentimental value to me. I’m not great at sewing, but I can do buttons and simple fixes.
I’m not opposed to creative solutions and would prefer fixes that could be undone.
posted by Vatnesine to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (8 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
If you don't mind adding a button somewhere along the exterior of the sleeve, you could attach a button tab inside the sleeve -- that way you can roll them up and secure them like this.
posted by thebots at 3:17 PM on November 16, 2020 [5 favorites]


If you fold the sleeves up like six inches the first time so you have a weird long six inch cuff, and then fold that in half three inches over it, it usually sticks.

Also it's quarantine so who cares about anything: hair tie based elastic cuffs.
posted by A Terrible Llama at 3:22 PM on November 16, 2020


If you fold back the cuffs , you can sew around the excess length, either with a sewing machine or by hand with needle and thread. Sew right at the edge where the cuff meets the sleeve, all the way around. If there's a lot of excess length you might want to trim it off carefully. When you fold the cuffs back down the seam is inside and the sleeves are shorter.

If the cuffs are still too loose, turn the whole sweater inside out and sew a straight seam just up the cuff. How big a seam will depend on how stretchy your cuffs are and how wide it is. If you’re needing to make a big adjustment, do several small straight seams around the cuff, spaced evenly. Don’t sew beyond the cuff, just to the edge where it meets the sleeve. It’ll look like intended tucks.

If this is confusing, feel free to memail me and i’ll talk you through it. If you hand sew and don’t trim it can be undone without too much trouble
posted by LaBellaStella at 3:23 PM on November 16, 2020


Knitters fix these by using elastic cord or thread and weaving it in and out and pull up the looseness and anchoring it to the arm pit area or wherever is a stable seam. 8ts a very satisfying fix to do.
posted by tipsyBumblebee at 3:23 PM on November 16, 2020 [1 favorite]


I would try adding elastic at the wrist - wide elastic so it's like a ribbed cuff.

(On preview - I would use thebots idea.)
posted by she's not there at 3:28 PM on November 16, 2020


My husband has solved this by making elastic “garters” that he places on his upper arm, on the Ouse of the sweater. That way, when he pulls up the excess fabric, it can fold down over the garters and they don’t show.
posted by dbmcd at 4:48 PM on November 16, 2020 [1 favorite]


When sweater sleeves are too long, check the shoulders and neck opening first. Because those parts lay on the crosswise direction of the sweater, they can almost double in size. Take a piece of ribbon about a foot long. stitch one end to the left shoulder seam and one end to the other shoulder seam (across the back of the neck.) Sew the shoulder seam to the ribbon, gathering it evenly across.
posted by ohshenandoah at 6:32 PM on November 16, 2020 [2 favorites]


Have you tried hand washing and blocking it (reshaping to dry flat in the shape/size you want it to be)? This is a good fix for a good few wears, usually.
posted by music for skeletons at 7:18 PM on November 16, 2020 [1 favorite]


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