How to Make a Leg of Mutton Sleeve Pattern & Sew It Together

by The SILEM
8 Materials
1 Hour

In today's tutorial, I'm going to show you how to make a leg of mutton sleeve. This is a sleeve shape that is fuller at the shoulder but fitted at the wrist, which gives it the leg of mutton shape.

We'll start by drafting a basic sleeve pattern, then I'll show you how to modify it to make a leg of mutton sleeve pattern. Let's get started.

Tools and materials:

  • Fabric
  • Ruler
  • Pen
  • Pattern paper
  • Sewing machine
  • Thread
  • Scissors
  • Elastic
Making a basic sleeve pattern

1. Make a basic sleeve pattern

On a piece of folded paper, mark 5 inches down (on the fold). Then, make another mark at 11 inches. 

Extending the lines with a ruler

Extend lines from each mark across your pattern paper. 

Marking the round sleeve measurement

Divide your round sleeve measurement (circumference of your forearm) by two. Then, measure this inwards from the 5-inch mark. Add a 1-inch allowance. 

Marking the elbow measurement

Also, divide the elbow measurement by two, measure this inwards from the 11-inch mark, and add a 1-inch allowance. 

Connecting the measurements

Now, connect both points, as shown. 

Drawing a line to the corner

Draw a triangular line so that it meets the top folded edge. 

Cutting out the basic sleeve pattern

Then, draw a curve along this line, as shown above. Cut out the basic sleeve pattern. 

Making a leg of mutton sleeve pattern

2. Make the leg of mutton sleeve pattern

Now, let’s create the leg of mutton sleeve pattern from this basic sleeve pattern. Open the pattern and extend the lines all the way across the paper.

Drawing down the fold line

Draw down the open fold line to create a center line.

Measuring 4 inches downwards

From the top, mark 4 inches downward. 

How to draft a leg of mutton sleeve

Mark 3 inches down from the top line. 

How to make a leg of mutton sleeve sleeve

From the 3-inch mark, go down another 2.5 inches and make another mark. 

DIY leg of mutton sleeve pattern

Repeat on the other side. 

Connecting the marks

Connect both side points to the top 4-inch mark. 

Cutting along the lines

Starting from the top, cut down the center line and diagonally to the second line. Make sure not to cut off the edge completely; stop a little before so it’s still attached. 

Spreading the pattern

Then, cut along the first diagonal line, and stop just before the end. 

Tip: If you cut the whole piece off by mistake, just use tape to piece it back together. 

Attaching the pattern to new paper

Using new pattern paper, find the center line and mark it. Then, place your cut-out pattern on top, align the center, and tape it down. 

Marking the width of the sleeve

On top, mark how wide you want your sleeve to be. If you want the gathered part to be exaggerated, you can go as far as 6-8 inches. I opted for something lowkey, so I went for 4 inches on either side. 

Aligning the top segments with the width measurement

Align the sides of the top pattern so that the tips touch the ends of the line you just drew.

Tracing around the pattern

Now, trace around and curve the top. Ensure you at least have 1 inch from the top for seam allowance.

Cutting out the leg of mutton sleeve pattern

Cut around your pattern. 

Leg of mutton sleeve pattern

Your leg of mutton sleeve pattern is complete! 

Cutting out the fabric

3. Cut the fabric

Go ahead and cut the pattern on your fabric. It can be any fabric of your choice. 

How to sew a leg of mutton sleeve

4. Sew the leg of mutton sleeve

Ok, let’s get down to business. Start by hemming the top raw edge with a single fold. 

DIY leg of mutton sleeve tutorial

Mark two inches from the tips, as shown. 

Sewing the leg of mutton sleeve

Start sewing the elastic from one of those points. If you’re wondering how long the elastic should be, mine was 4 inches less than my shoulder measurement. Remember to stretch the elastic as you sew. 

Sewing the sleeve seam

Once your elastic is sewn, go ahead and sew the side seam with the right sides facing. 

Attaching the leg of mutton sleeve to a bodice or dress

5. Attach the leg of mutton sleeve

Now, you can attach your sleeves to your bodice or dress. Just make sure to align the seams, as I have. 

How to make leg of mutton sleeves

Sew the pieces together. I was attaching my leg of mutton sleeves to a tube-style dress, so I didn't have an armhole to insert the sleeve into. Instead, I sewed down by two inches, as that’s what I measured as a starting point for the elastic. 

Dress with leg of mutton sleeves

Leg of mutton sleeve tutorial

Here’s the final result. What do you think of this stunning leg of mutton sleeve? Thanks for joining me, and I hope you got to learn a thing or two.

Let me know what you think of my leg of mutton sleeve tutorial down below.

Suggested materials:
  • Fabric
  • Ruler
  • Pen
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Join the conversation
  • Gerri Gerri on May 02, 2022

    Wow, this dress probably looked fabulous on a curvy hourglass body. Very flattering. I do not have the right type body for this particular dress but the sleeve can be used on a few different types of bodices. Nice tutorial.

  • Diane K. Diane K. on May 18, 2022

    Very clear directions, appreciated.