How to Make a Flutter Sleeve Pattern in 5 Easy Steps

Check out the step-by-step instructions below and learn how to make a pattern without any hassle!
Jean Chaney
Jean Chaney
Research Writer
Jean is the brains behind her fashion label. She's a whiz with a needle and thread, and has been sewing since she was old enough to hold a pair of scissors. Jean has always read more
Reviewed By
Isabel Misner
Isabel Misner
Expert Consultant
A professional seamstress. Isabel has her own video blog where she shares her experience about all the aspects of sewing – from choosing suitable materials to step-by-step read more
Last updated: August 10, 2023
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Who says that your shirt sleeves have to be plain and boring? You can always customize your sleeves and make something that is as elegant looking as flutter sleeves. Flutter sleeves are essentially short sleeves that have a loose fitting. These sleeves fall on your upper arm with their soft folds. The best thing about this kind of sleeves is that they suit most body types because of the way they balance your figure. Since these sleeves are flowy, they also allow a great deal of mobility for your arm to move around.

Today, we will be guiding you through the proper and detailed way to draft a flutter sleeve pattern. So let’s get started!

Measurements You Need to Take

How to Make a Flutter Sleeve Pattern in 5 Easy Steps

Before you start working on the flutter sleeve pattern, you need to get a few accurate measurements to make sure that you get a more customized fit. Here are the measurements that you need to take:

  1. Armscye Depth: This measurement is extremely important for drafting patterns for any kind of sleeves. Since the length from your armpit to your waist is the same as the length of your arms, we will be telling you the easiest way to measure this area. Take your measure tape and place it on your waist. Then, extend the measuring tape up till the bottom of your armpit. This will be your armscye depth. You can also measure the actual armscye depth by using a piece of thread and looping it around your armpit. Then mark the thread and measure the length.
  2. Sleeve Length: While flutter sleeves are usually short, you still need to measure the length of your sleeve for the pattern itself. To measure, place your measuring tape at the highest point on your shoulder. This area is usually the bone area from where your upper arm starts. Then take your measuring tape to the point where you want your sleeves to go till and note down the length.

These are all the measurements that you would need for making flutter sleeves.

Make sure that you carefully note down these measurements as they will be used while we draft our flutter sleeve pattern.

Making a Flutter Sleeve Pattern

Here is how you can draft your own flutter sleeve pattern:

What You Will Need

Like all sewing projects, making a flutter pattern requires some tools and material. We have worked on an extensive list of the things you will need. While you may not need all of these items, it is always best to be prepared in advance. Here is a list of all the things you will be needing:

  1. Fabric: While the choice of fabric largely depends on you, flutter sleeves work best if you select fabric that is light weight. There are many different types of lightweight fabrics that you can get, including cotton. Since we are working on sleeves, you won’t be needing a large amount of fabric.
  2. Sewing Thread: You will be needing sewing thread to match your fabric for stitching. ARTIKA sewing kit contains some high-quality threads in a variety of colors.
  3. Sewing pins: Sewing pins would be extremely useful to you throughout the entire process as they will be useful for holding different materials in place.
  4. Sewing needle: Sewing needle will be used to stitch all the pieces together.
  5. Scissors: This is pretty self-explanatory but you will be needing some sharp scissors to cut the paper and the fabric.
  6. Tracing paper: This paper will be used for the pattern itself.
  7. Pencil: This will be used for drawing the pattern lines.
  8. Pattern master: This is like a ruler that will help you follow your lines and measurements when drafting the flutter sleeve pattern.
  9. Sewing machine: Lastly, you will be needing a sewing machine to help stitch all the pieces of fabric together. Here are some of the best sewing machine for making clothes.

Step-by-Step Guide

While stitching may not be for everyone, you can easily draft flutter sleeve patterns by following the following steps:

Step 1: We will be starting off with a blouse sleeve block. Using a scissor, shorten the block to about two to three inches below your bicep.

Step 2: Then, take a pencil and draw vertical lines on the block. This will be dividing the sleeve into different sections. Make sure that your sections are at least 1.5 inches wide while the end sections should be at least 3 inches wide.

How to Make a Flutter Sleeve Pattern in 5 Easy Steps

Step 3: Using scissors, cut along these lines while making sure that you do not cut all the way to the sleeve cap. If you do end up accidentally cutting all the way, then there is no need to worry as long as your pieces remain in the same order.

Step 4: Now, we will be spreading apart all the pieces. This will help create the flutter that the sleeves are known for. Ideally, we recommend spreading the pieces to about 1.5 inches. But you can decide on how little or more flare that you want to add to your sleeves. For more flutter, you can spread the pieces further apart.

How to Make a Flutter Sleeve Pattern in 5 Easy Steps

Step 5: Then cut a lightweight fabric according to the pattern and arrange the pieces for stitching. Once stitched, your sleeves are ready to be attached to any dress or shirt that you like!

Where You Can Use Flutter Sleeves

When it comes to style, flutter sleeves are extremely versatile. You can attach the sleeves on any kind of dress, blouse, or shirt and they will look so good. These sleeves will look good for any party or formal event. You can even wear flutter sleeves casually to any garden party Trusted Source Garden party (disambiguation) - Wikipedia or lunch.

Final Thoughts

Like the name suggests, flutter sleeves add that fluttering effect to any kind of outfit that you wear. These sleeves can look elegant or even add that fun element to your outfit. You can buy many flutter sleeve patterns online,  but if you want you make your own sleeve pattern then this guide is ideal for you. While it may seem a tedious task at first, our detailed and easy to follow instructions will be guiding you through each step of the way. We hope that you have fun while working on your sleeves!


Garden party (disambiguation) - Wikipedia
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