Sleeve cap ease is bogus pt.2

Last November, I published Sleeve cap ease is bogus, making the argument that horizontal stripe matching would be impossible were there ease in the sleeve cap. In spite of providing the proof of such and offering pattern suggestions -because I’ve certainly done it enough myself- my claim that sleeve cap ease is not needed became a hotly debated topic in the forum. One person even suggested that in order to affect the match stripe across the sleeve and body, designers were using a different fabric with wider width of stripes for the sleeves! No one really made much of that idea but then it was proposed that only an exaggeratedly extended shoulder line would permit a horizontal match stripe -to which I also disagreed. However, I did concede that a match stripe would be difficult to effect on someone who was obese. As my reasoning -and personal experience- went, it is difficult to make a sleeve match in which the bicep girth exceeds the total measure of the armhole. Then on Monday, the NY Times published a photographic proof that even someone who is obese could find a jacket with a horizontal match stripe across the sleeve. I offer into evidence, this photo of the Chilean president Michelle Bachelet, who is definitely not height and weight proportionate.

Claudio Santana/Associated Press
[Typically, one is not permitted to reprint copyrighted material without permission except in cases of critical review and I’d think this article definitely meets that test.]

From the photo you can see that the shoulder line of her jacket is not extended. If anything, it’s rather short. Still, you can see the bicep line is tight; the jacket is too small for her. For the sleeve to fit her bicep, the armhole would have to be larger in order to effect the matching stripe (without sleeve cap ease of course). The problem with that being that if the armhole were larger, it’d negatively impact her range of motion (see pp. 163-169 of the entrepreneur’s guide). She really should be wearing another size larger.

To reiterate: sleeve cap ease is not necessary provided both the sleeve and armhole are drafted according to anatomical dictates. In fact, one cannot effect a match stripe across the sleeve if there is ease in the sleeve cap. No one suggests this is easy and simple to draft which is why you don’t see it very often. I’ve been wanting to make a jacket like this to show all of you but I’m finding it difficult to locate goods with the stripe running cross grain. Being that this is so difficult, men’s suiting is rarely woven in this manner. Any suggestions for sources of summer weights -preferably linen or raw silk- online? DH needs a new jacket anyway.

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