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Sleeves and Bias Finishing

In this lesson, we will assemble and insert the sleeves for version 3. Then, we will finish the necklines with bias binding for all versions and finish the armholes with bias binding for versions 1 and 2.

Some sewing techniques take more practice than others. Attaching bias binding can be a bit tricky—we’re here to help. Make sure to comment with any questions and votes of confidence for your fellow Sorbetto sewists!

Let’s get started!

Assemble Sleeves

2) With right sides together, match the underarms of each sleeve. Pin and stitch at a 5/8″ seam allowance. Press the seam allowances open. Finish the seam allowances separately.

Sew three rows of gathering stitches along the sleeve cap, between the notches. One row of stitching should be 1/4”″ 1/2”, and 3/4” down from the edge.

3) Fold the hem of the sleeve to the wrong side at 1/4”. Press.

4) Fold the hem to the wrong side once more at 3/8”. Press.

5) Edgestitch along the top fold line. Repeat steps for the second sleeve.

Insert Sleeves

1) With right sides together, insert the sleeve into the armhole, matching notches and seams. Align the circle on the sleeve cap with the shoulder seam. Pin the sleeve in place at the between the notches, inserting pins from the sleeve side.

3) Adjust the sleeve cap by pulling on the thread tails to align with the armhole. Pin the sleeve cap in place.

4) Hand or machine baste the sleeve into the armhole. Stitching with the sleeve side on top will help you make sure that no folds or puckers form as you stitch. After basting, stitch the sleeve to the armhole, using a regular stitch length. Remove the basting stitches.

6) Finish the seam allowances together, I chose to use pinking shears. Clip the inner curves of the underarm seam allowance. Repeat steps for the second sleeve.

Join Bias Binding in a Loop

The New Sorbetto pattern has great instructions for an easy way to join pieces of bias binding together to create a continuous loop that can be attached to a neckline. In this lesson, you’ll learn a fancier technique. Either technique will yield the same results.

All of your bias binding should be pre-folded, either by you or the manufacturer, before beginning this technique. To learn how to make your own continuous bias binding, click here.

1) Measure the circumference of the neckline.

2) Add 1/2” seam allowance to the neckline measurement and cut your bias tape at this measurement.

For example, the neckline of the size 14 measures 26 1/4″, plus the 1/2” total width of the bias tape, equals 26 3/4″.

When cutting the bias tape, make sure that the ends are cut at opposite 45 degree angles from each other. See photo for reference.

3) With right sides together, align the raw edges of the bias binding. In order for the bias binding to line up after sewing, offset the points by 1/4″ on either side.

4) Sew this seam using a 1/4″ seam allowance.

5) Trim and press the seam open.

Finish Neckline and Armholes with Bias Binding

1) Unfold the bias tape. Match the right side of the bias tape to the wrong side of the neckline, aligning the seam of the bias tape with the center back of the neckline and continuing around the neckline. Pin.

2) Stitch the bias tape to the neckline along the first fold line, beginning and ending at the center back.

3) Fold the bias tape to the right side of the neckline, along the fold lines, to cover the raw edges of the neckline to create a binding. Pin.

4) Edgestitch along the bias tape through all layers.

Use this same technique to finish the armholes with bias binding for version 1 and version 2.


Look how far we’ve come! All that’s left is to hem version 1 and version 3 and assemble and attach the hem facing to version 2. By the end of the next lesson, you’ll have a finished Sorbetto!

The Sorbetto Sewalong

  1. Welcome to the Sorbetto Sewalong (25 Comments)
  2. Gather Fabric and Supplies (24 Comments)
  3. Basic Fit Adjustments (17 Comments)
  4. Bust Adjustments (41 Comments)
  5. Making a Muslin (35 Comments)
  6. Shoulder and Sleeve Adjustments (12 Comments)
  7. Front Bodice Adjustments (12 Comments)
  8. Cutting and Prep (2 Comments)
  9. Assemble Bodice (5 Comments)
  10. Sleeves and Bias Finishing (10 Comments)
  11. Hems (11 Comments)
  12. Your Sorbettos! (5 Comments)



It’s hard for me to visual how you put the sleeve into the arm hole. Do you line the arm hole up with the third basting line from the sleeve cap?

Katie Whittle |

Het Rachael, to insert the sleeve into the armhole, first align the side seams of the sleeve and bodice, right sides together and pin. Next, align the notches and pin them in place. Lastly, align the dot marking on the sleeve with the shoulder seam and pin. During this entire process, the raw edges should be lined up.

After pinning these points, adjust the sleeve cap by pulling on the thread tails to align the remaining sections of the sleeve with the armhole. During this entire process, line the raw edges should up to each other as well.

Let me know if this makes sense and if you have any other questions.


Also, the bodice of my shirt didn’t feel tight until I put the sleeves on (I’m making version 3) would this be a shoulder adjustment or can I just add a 1/2″ or so to the back? The shoulders actually feel fine and the sleeve itself is a bit on the larger side.

Katie Whittle |

Would you mind sending a photo of your muslin to us? I’m not quite understanding where you tightness is coming from and a photo would help us diagnose the problem ;) You can email the photo to us at,

Celine Combet |

At that makes sense now for the sleeves! Mine were far bigger than the arm hole…. I am confused by the lines of stiching though because the last one is at 3/4′ which is over the seam allowance of 5/8′, is that line not going to show on the sleeve once it is attached to the bodice?

Celine Combet |

Hi sorry for another question but why are you adding 1/2 twice to the neckline measurement?
For example, the neckline of the size 14 measures 26 1/4″, plus the 1/2” total width of the bias tape, equals 26 3/4″. The bias tape would be cut at 27 1/2″ for a size 14 neckline.
I don’t understand why you are saying to cut 27 1/2 for a size 14 neckline and not 26 3/4?


I have the same question! Thank you!


I can’t tell you how happy I am to have seen and downloaded your Sorbetto pattern. I haven’t quite finished it yet but I am so pleased with it. I have just found your website and seen the wonderfully detailed instructions that you provide. I know I will make this again and again. I can see many ways to make simple changes to vary the look. Love that it has no buttons or zip and yet sits beautifully around the neck with no gapes. I wish I had heard of you long ago.


Hello- would you mind confirming the neck circumference of a size 16 please.
(But confused ?)
thanks x

Katie Whittle |

Hey Kim!
The finished neckline measurement for size 26 is 27.25″. If your neckline is not the correct measurement, most likely the pleat was not sewn along the correct line.