How to Fix Baggy T-shirt Sleeves That Are Too Big

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How to Fix Baggy T-shirt Sleeves

Unless you have the huge arms of a Marvel character, you’ll discover that many t-shirt brands have sleeves that are far too baggy.

This can make your arms appear even smaller if you’re a slender or average-sized guy, which isn’t what you want.

Sleeves that hug your biceps lightly make your arms appear fit and muscular.

I’ll show you how to make any t-shirt fit you properly in the sleeves in this article.

You can do this quickly using a sewing machine. But, if you don’t have one, I’ll show you how to do it by hand with ease.

Here are the resources you’ll require to get started.

  • a sewing machine or a sewing needle can be used
  • thread in a color that closely matches the fabric of your t-shirt
  • pins for sewing
  • a set of safety pins
  • a chalk or a fabric pencil
  • a measuring device
  • scissors

Measure and Pin

The first step is to measure and pin.

There are two methods for getting the correct sleeve width measurements.

Method 1

The first and most straightforward technique is to use an existing t-shirt that fits perfectly as a template.

  • Turn the t-shirt you’ll be altering inside out and lay it flat on the table.
  • Then, on top of that, lay your perfectly fitting t-shirt. Line up the bottom and outer edges of the sleeves, then use your fabric pencil to create a mark at the inside seam.
  • Now we’ll draw a line from this mark to the armpit seam of the shirt. You can just draw a straight line if you want to keep things simple.
  • However, in my experience, if you draw a subtle curve instead, you’ll obtain a nicer final outcome.
  • Put a sewing pin into the fabric to hold it in place, and you’re done.
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Method 2

What if you don’t have a perfectly fitted t-shirt to use as a template?

There is no need to be concerned. You may simply obtain the necessary measurements on your own.

  • Turn the t-shirt inside out and put it on.
  • Pinch the underside of the arm fabric until it softly hugs your bicep, then secure it with a safety pin.
  • Remove the shirt, lay it flat, and take out your fabric pencil.
  • Make a line from the safety pin to the shirt’s armpit, either straight or with a slight bend.
  • Put the safety pin, then secure the sleeve with a sewing pin or two to prevent it from moving.


Let’s sew in the second step.

With Sewing Machine

The sewing machine is the quickest and easiest way to do things, so that’s what I’ll start with.

Prepare your bobbin and install your thread.

Let’s get started.

  • We’re going to use a straight stitch to sew. Choose a stitch length of 2.5 millimeters.
  • Make a back stitch once the first couple of stitches are laid down. This will secure the thread and prevent your stitch from unraveling.
  • Stitch down the line you drew with your fabric pencil carefully until you reach the end.
  • Finish it up with a couple more backstitches.
  • Cut off the excess fabric with your scissors, leaving a quarter-inch seam allowance.
  • We’ll use a zigzag or overlock stitch to create a tidy completed edge because we don’t want the fabric to fray.

By Hand

What if you don’t have access to a sewing machine?

You can simply slim the t-shirt by hand, so don’t worry.

  • Cut your thread to be at least twice as long as the sleeve of your t-shirt.
  • To ensure maximum strength, we’ll double thread the needle. It’s a good thread to put an extra foot of thread since it’s preferable to have a little more than to run out halfway through.
  • Before tying a knot, pull the thread to the needle and make both ends equal in length.
  • To make the knot, tie an X with the thread around your index finger.
  • Slide your index finger back while pinching the X between your index and thumb.
  • Before pulling the thread with your other hand, bring your middle finger down in front of it to hold it. As a result, you’ll have a sturdy knot that won’t come undone.
  • Begin sewing along the line you drew with the fabric pencil at one end of the sleeve.
  • Push the needle through one side, then back through the other, in alternating directions.
  • For best strength, keep your stitches close together; 2 to 3 millimeters is a good starting point.
  • It may be tempting to go for longer stitches to save time, but if your sleeve pops open later, you’ll be sorry you did.
  • Produce a knot by pulling the needle through the last stitch to form a loop, then pulling the needle through that loop to make a knot. Make sure it’s good and secure by doing it a couple of times.
  • Cut the excess fabric, leaving a quarter-inch seam allowance.
  • To finish off the edge, we’ll use a whip stitch.
  • Double-thread your needle and form a knot once more.
  • Push the needle through one side of the fabric, but instead of returning to the other side, we’ll bring it over the top and back through that same side.
  • Finish in this manner until you reach the end, then tie a knot.
  • This basically creates a loop, which will hold the fabric in place.
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That is all there is to it. Now, no matter what big your arms are, you can make any t-shirt fit you exactly.

how to fix t-shirt sleeves that are too big

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