I’ve scrolled past the question or remark about wrinkling around armpits a ton in sewing groups. I’m here to talk about the #1 cause of armpit wrinkle on the sleeves.
It’s easier to understand why we have wrinkles around the armpit when we know how the sleeve was drafted. Different sleeve types are drafted differently.
Dolman sleeves are also drafted so that there are no wrinkles when we have our arms lifted horiztonally.
Raglan sleeves are drafted so that there are little to no wrinkles when your arms are lifted.
Set in sleeves on knit tees are drafted so that there are no wrinkles when our arms are at a diagonal.
Okay, so what does that mean? When your arms are in other positions than the ones the sleeves are drafted for there will always be wrinkles/extra fabric/pulling. Lets see a few real life picture examples!
Dolman: Shown here: The Sweet Tee Others we have in the shop are: The Pumpkin Spice Dolman and CoCoon Cardigan
Arms up (almost horizontal– I don’t stand with my arms straight out too much for pictures ;)): very little wrinkling or extra fabric and if my arm was up slightly more horizontal it would go away completely.
Arms Down: All the extra fabric is now “bunched”up under my arm when I put them down.
Arms Down: in this more stable cotton spandex you can really see the difference!
Raglan: Shown here in the pink and grey: Slim Fit Raglan , Shown here in the black and leopard: Relaxed Raglan , and Shown here in youth: Jolly Roger Raglan
Arm Up: (almost horizontal).
Arms Up: (again it was near impossible to find one all the way up/out but this is close!)
Arms Raised: higher than horizontal. You can see the wrinkling move from under the arm to on top, it is being pulled since it is higher than the raglan sleeve is drafted at.
And another raglan set courtesy of my Little Guy 🙂
Arms Up: although it’s a close up, you can see his hands are on his hips-so not fully horizontal, but close!
Arms Down: (that look guys! He’s a sassy one for sure…that doesn’t enjoy modeling for mama 😉 )
Set in Sleeves: Shown here: Sweetheart Dress , Shown here in youth: Henley , Shown here: fit picture from testing the upcoming youth tee 🙂 , and also in the shop we have Grandpa Cardigan , Wingman Shirt , Boundless Knit Dress , Buried Treasure Tunic , High Low Tide Top
One Arm Down and One Arm Extended Up: see the wrinkles are in different spots. My arm that is down creates wrinkle under the armpit area. My arm that is extended all the way up creates them on top of the shoulder. (Also super crazy face I’m making because it was super windy 😉 ).
Arms Diagonal: the only wrinkling going on here is because I’m pulling my arm to the back (pointing my elbow backwards) unnaturally to try to show off the top.
Here is a few youth examples of set in sleeves as well!
Arms Diagonal: (no wrinkling)
Arms Down: (wrinkling at under arm)
Arms Extended Up: (wrinkling above arm/shoulder)
If you’re realizing you have wrinkles at the bust, not sleeve we’ve also blogged about those here!
I hope this helps all you wonderful seamstresses out there creating knit garments and trying to make sure you’re getting the fit right 🙂