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Bishop sleeve : Different types and how to sew them

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Bishop Sleeve is a long sleeve, gathered at the hem to a fitting plain cuff band or an elastic cuff. The sleeve is quite fitted at the armhole but gradually widens as it reaches the hem, where the fullness is contained with the cuff.

A bishop sleeve can be slightly full or It can be very full and billowy and made in a flowy drapey fabric. The Bishop sleeve can create a very feminine silhouette for your garment.

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4 main types of Bishop sleeves

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Bishop sleeve with plain cuff

Usually the bishop sleeve ends with a plain band at the hem – the sleeve edge is gathered and attached to a band.

A narrow band.

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Or a wide band.

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Bishop sleeve with plain cuff and simple placket opening

The band of the bishop sleeve can have a simple placket opening and the band will have a button opening.

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Bishop sleeve with cuff gathered with elastic smocking

The end of the bishop sleeve can be gathered with elastic thread smocking. You can check out how to shir fabric like this with elastic thread.

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Bishop sleeve with an elastic band

The Bishop sleeve can end with a simple elastic band.

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Half Bishop sleeve

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You can learn here how to sew this kind of sleeve.

How to draft a Bishop sleeve

Draft an ordinary sleeve and mark parallel vertical lines on the sleeve. Check out this post on drafting sleeves.

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Cut out the lines.

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Keep your sleeve pattern on another piece of bigger fabric. Spread the cut lines.

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Mark around the sleeve.

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Cut through this new outline. This is your new Bishop sleeve pattern.

Check out related posts on sewing plackets on sleeve hem.

Related posts : Cap sleeve drawing pattern; Frill sleeves/Ruffle sleeves; How to draft Flutter sleeves ; Different types of bell sleeves

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Author: Sarina Tariq
Hi, I love sewing, fabric, fashion, embroidery, doing easy DIY projects and then writing about them. Hope you have fun learning from sewguide as much as I do. If you find any mistakes here, please point it out in the comments.
5 thoughts on “Bishop sleeve : Different types and how to sew them”
  1. Barb
    What happens to the sleeve head? It spreads as well so it doesn’t match the original head. Do I retrace the original head on my new pattern piece? Reply
    • Ryan
      You need to copy the spread sleeve head as well, or there will be a sharp angle where the rest of the sleeve spreads out. Either adjust the size of your armscye accordingly, or put gathers into the bell of the sleeve head to shrink the length back down so it fits the predrafted armscye.
  2. SHELLEE
    That was a very nice tutorial. Thanks Reply
  3. Teddy
    Thanks alot for sharing. God Bless you Reply
  4. Grace Grace
    Thank you, rosettanreedlaw.com ☺️ Reply
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