Intro: Reversible Long Sleeve Shrug
Have you ever been cold while wearing a nice dress, but didn't want to cover up your dress with a sweater? The long sleeve shrug is the solution!
I will provide the instructions for making the shrug pictured, and I'll include tips for how I think the fit can be improved.
- one yard each of the two colors you want your reversible shrug to be
- thread matching each of your two colors
- sewing machine
Step 1: Measure & Draft
I measured myself and did a prototype with some non-stretchy bright yellow fleece. I like the way that the fit looks, but it was painfully tight under my armpits after wearing it for a while. I tried to make the back piece longer to fix this, but I think the real solution is to shorten the back piece by an inch so that the corners of the back piece don't have to stretch into your armpit.
I made some adjustments and now I feel like the bottom hem on the back is too long. I think that next time I would try shortening the back piece by an inch such that it isn't as low as the sleeves when the piece is laid flat.
You will need five measurements: Across your back (measured at the height of the armpit for the version I sewed, but one inch higher than that on the version I recommend to prevent armpit tightness), around the back of my neck, neck to back measurement (this is the height of the back piece), side of neck to center of armpit, and side of neck to wrist (sleeve length).
I recommend sewing up a one color draft to make sure it fits. You will need four sleeve pieces and one back piece. Sew the back to the back sleeve pieces, and then sew to attach the front sleeve pieces.
Step 2: Cut
From each color of fabric, cut 4x sleeve pieces and 1x back piece.
Step 3: Sew One Color
Pick one of your fabrics to start with. Sew a back piece to two back sleeve pieces, making sure that you're sewing with right sides together. Sew the front sleeve pieces to the back sleeve pieces on the over arm seam and under arm seam.
Step 4: Sew the Other Color
Do the same thing with the second color: Sew a back piece to two back sleeve pieces, making sure that you're sewing with right sides together. Sew the front sleeve pieces to the back sleeve pieces on the over arm seam and under arm seam.
Step 5: Sew the Front
Designate one color as the inside color. I've picked white. Arrange your pieces so that the outside color has its seams facing out, and the inside color has its seams facing in. Put the inside color fabric inside the outside color, and sew all around the middle seam, leaving a hole big enough to put your fist in.
Step 6: Sew the Sleeves
Reach into one sleeve of your inside fabric and pull it inside out. Connect it to its matching sleeve and sew around the circumference. Do the same with the other side. I messed this part up and had to redo part of it, but what you're basically making is what my boyfriend is holding up, but with all the seams facing outwards (some of mine are facing inwards because I messed up).
Step 7: Flip
Reach in through the fist sized hole, and pull out one of the outside sleeves. If you keep pulling, it should come out right side out, and the inside sleeve should get pulled inside it. Do the same for the other sleeve.
Step 8: Add Elastic (optional)
At this point you should try it on, and if there's too much fabric on the bottom of the back, you can sew on an elastic to the inside. Stretch it a bit as you sew.
Step 9: Close
Blind stitch the fist sized hole closed
Step 10: Top Stitch (optional)
Since my white fabric was much thinner than my black fabric, it always sticks out around the sleeve. You can topstitch this with a zig zag stitch, and corresponding top and bottom color thread. Make sure that the fabric is NOT stretched or squished while it is going through the machine or it will come out stretched.