How To Shorten Suit Sleeves Without Sewing?

Every woman understands the significance of a well-fitting suit, especially for the cherished men in our lives. However, what if that nearly impeccable suit is marred only by sleeves that are slightly too long?

The ideal length should grace the wrist, not drape beyond.

While many might consider a trip to the tailor as the only solution, our bustling lives sometimes don’t allow for it. But fret not! I’m here with a simple and effective method to adjust those sleeves without any sewing.

How Do You Shorten Suit Sleeves Without Sewing?

To shorten suit sleeves without sewing is an easy process. You need to wear a suit and identify how long it is. Then fold the excess fabric into the suit until it reaches the ideal length on your forearm.

Using bobby pins, pin the excess fabric on the sleeve, Make sure that the pins are not visible from the right side of the fabric when wearing your suit. 

Method 1. Using Bobby Pins

Bobby Pins

Step 1. Wear your suit to see how long the sleeve is. Professional tailors recommend that suit sleeves should not go beyond the wrist on your arm. So, if your suit sleeves not only cover your full shirt but also your wrist they are too long and need to be shortened.

Step 2.  Fold the excess fabric upwards. Hold the fabric of suit sleeves that goes beyond the wrist. Fold it in and test how proper it looks on your arms.

Step 3. Turn the suit inside out. This will make it easier for you to mark the desired length of your suit sleeve, It also makes it easy to fold the sleeve to this desired length.

Step 4. Take off the jacket and fix the bobby pins on the fold you have just made to get your jacket to the right length. Make sure to insert the pin in the folds so that it is not visible on the right side.

Step 5. Wear your jacket and confirm that the sleeves are now at the right length. Also, check that the pins are not visible on the right side.

Method 2. Use Hemming Tape

Hemming Tape

Step 1. Wear your suit inside out. 

Step 2. Fold the excess fabric of the sleeves until it gets to the desired length. Mark this point with a pen or chalk. Then take off your jacket. 

Step 3. Place your jacket on a flat surface and make sure to stretch the sleeves so that you can see the desired length marks easily.

Fold your sleeves up to this point. In the fold, insert hemming tape and iron the fold flat. This will ensure that your fold will attach to the hemming tape easily. You can use temporary or permanent hemming tape to shorten your suit sleeves. 

Method 3. Use Safety Pins

Safety Pins

Step 1. To shorten your suit jacket sleeves, you need to wear the suit. This helps you to identify how long it is and the desired length of your sleeves.

Step 2. Fold the excess fabric on the sleeves of your jacket to the desired length. 

Step 3. Take your safety pins and insert them at the seams of the sleeves to fix the fold in place. Do this for both seams. Make sure that the pins are not visible on the right side of the jacket when you wear it. Safety pins are easy to use and highly effective. You can take them off the jacket when washing and when storing it. 

Method 4. Use Starch

Step 1. Turn the jacket inside out and wear it.

Step 2. Fold the excess fabric on your sleeves until it reaches the desired length. 

Step 3. You can fix the fold in place with pins or mark the ideal length with chalk.

Step 4. Take off the jacket and place it on your ironing board ready to iron it. 

Step 5. Place an ironing cloth over the lining of the suit to protect it from excess heat. Then iron the fold in place.

Step 6. As you iron the fold in place, spray starch on the suit sleeves. This keeps the part you are ironing stiff and hard. Keep ironing so that the fold stays in place. 

Step 7. You can now wear your jacket. You will find that the fold maintains the position it is ironed at to keep your sleeves at the ideal length.

Method 5. Use Rubberbands 


Step 1. Wear your suit and let the sleeves hang naturally, 

Step 2. Wear rubber bands onto your forearm. You can look for rubberbands in the color of your suit to keep them invisible, 

Step 3. Pull up the sleeves of your suit until they get to the desired length above the wrist. Pull gently so that your sleeve is not left wrinkled by the strength of the elastic. 

Step 4. Repeat for the other arm. 

Method 6. Use Fabric Glue

Fabric Glue

Step 1. When using fabric glue, you can opt for permanent or temporary fabric glue. Permanent fabric glue quickly dries once it is applied to the fabric and is washable without running off the fabric. 

Step 2. Fabric glue is used in the inside seams of the garment. So turn your jacket inside out and wear it. This will help you to mark the ideal length of the sleeves of your jacket.

Step 3. Mark the desired length with a tailor’s chalk or whatever you have and take it off.

Step 4. On the fold of your excess fabric on your sleeves, apply a line of fabric glue. Then press the fold onto the glue for a few seconds. Fabric glue is fast-acting and it will hold the fold firmly in this place in a few seconds. Repeat for the other sleeve. 

Step 5. When the fabric glue holds your sleeves to the right length, iron your jacket sleeves. You can spray starch at the bottom of the sleeves so that it helps to maintain the structure of the sleeve and to keep the hem stiff and hard. 

How To Make Sure That Your Suit Fit?

A well-fitted suit stands out in any crowd. To achieve that impeccable look, your suit must hug your body just right, neither too snug nor too loose. Let’s explore the crucial checkpoints to ensure a perfect fit:

1. Shoulders: Begin at the top. The jacket’s shoulders should align with yours, without excess fabric spilling over, ensuring a sleek silhouette.

2. Chest: Check the lapels next. When buttoned, a hand should slide behind them comfortably, indicating a good fit at the chest.

3. Buttons: For a three-button suit, the middle button should sit just above the navel. For two buttons, the top one should occupy this position. This ensures your jacket sits perfectly.

4. Sleeves: A significant marker of fit, sleeves should terminate at your wrist. Ideally, they should reveal about ½ inch of your shirt cuff.

5. Pants: The waistband should sit comfortably without being restrictive. The trouser leg should end just above your shoes, subtly revealing your socks. Additionally, slipping your hands in and out of the pockets should be effortless.

The key to looking sharp is a suit tailored to your unique physique.

Can You Make A Suit Jacket Slimmer?

Yes, you can. This is one of the most common suit alterations that many tailors get. Other common alterations carried out on suits include shortening the sleeves and the length of the suit.

But, making the suit slimmer is a loved alteration that makes even cheap suits look bespoke and expensive.

When it comes to suiting alterations, it is easier to shorten the length than to increase it. So, you can buy a long suit and shorten it easily as well as make it slimmer. 

It is possible to make a suit slimmer. When you wear a jacket, it should not look like you are swimming in it. At the same time, the suit should be too tight on your body. To get this perfect balance, you can take your suit to the tailor for tapering on the suiting body.

When you go to the tailor, they will pin the back of your suit jacket in three parts. This will ensure that your jacket follows the curve of the back and the front fits perfectly against your chest and sides. Excess fabric on the front can also be reduced to make the jacket slimmer

It is common to take suits to the tailor for alterations. This makes suits fit you better and make you look better.


Hello, I am Jessica Flores, and you are welcome to my website. I am a professional fashion designer and a seamstress. I always carried a passion for craftwork. My love for craft grew along with time. I have spent years researching and practicing in this field to gather colossal experience.

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