Wednesday 17 February 2016

Before & After - DIY Lace-Up Sleeve Detail

photo LaceUpSleevesDIY_zpsf63gzbjr.JPG
I got this basic shirt from the Monki sale, and the slits on the sleeves seemed like a lovely idea at the time. But when I wore it, it turned out the concept of the flappy sleeves really doesn't work with this fabric - you'd need more stiffness in the material. In this case the result is just an annoying in-the-way kind of feeling. The time had come for laced-up sleeves. To a non-pre-slit sleeve this would be super easy to do as well, just open up the sleeve underseam the desired length of your slit and re-finish the sides, before proceeding to add the grommets.

photo Before_zpsadp7ipbn.JPG
photo 0 Tools_zpspngmg7b9.JPG
Grommet kit (I used 10 grommets for each sleeve)  |  Hole puncher  |  Hammer  |  String (matching or contrasting color with your top)  + Fray-stop glue or clear nail polish if your fabric frays

I. Mark the spots for your holes. My sleeve slits were about 20 cm long, and I added my holes about 5 cm apart. 
photo 1 Mark the spots_zpshpk07ynr.JPG
II. Use the hole puncher to make the holes in the marked spots. Important: in the grommet kit you typically get a cheap hole puncher (probably something like this). I'm sure good ones exist, but I've explored 3 different grommet kits now and have yet to encounter one that is sharp enough. So I would recommend using a proper hole puncher. It leaves a much cleaner hole, especially on more delicate fabrics. I also recommend making your holes a size down from what the hole puncher in the kit is - The hole will give enough for you to get the grommet base through, and will be less likely to fray when it's really snug.
photo 2 Punch holes_zpsfzuczkmh.JPG
III. Important step if you're working with a fabric that frays at all! I learned this the hard way when I installed my first grommets in another project. Treat your punched holes with either fray stop glue or clear nail-polish - this will prevent your holes from expanding as you install the grommets. Especially if using the latter, be careful to only apply a tiiiny bit right at the raw edge. Otherwise your grommet won't cover it and you'll have a nasty stain around it. This is typically not an issue with fray stop, as it tends to dry invisible. Test on a non-visible part of your fabric first to be sure.
photo 3 Fray stop_zpsc12l1pnt.JPG
IV. Install your grommets. I went over this in more detail here, or if you need a video, this one is pretty universal.
photo 4 Grommets installed_zpsk5r98c0x.JPG
V. Then just add your lace! I went with the classic corset-style X lacing, but you could change it up and look for inspiration e.g. in shoe lace tying patterns.
photo 5 Lace up_zpsvccvxj3q.JPG




  1. Thank you ,,, love it🇨🇦♥️

  2. Great idea! It would also look really cute with antique buttons.

  3. Great idea for those sleeves that seem to be a bit too tight also


I would love to hear what you think and learn about your DIY adventures! If you use one of my tutorials, tag me on social @contour_affair, I'd love to see!


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