Style Glossary: Sleeve It to Me

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It’s the time of year when you adventure into the dusty depths of your closet and pull out every nubby knit, woolly hat, and long-sleeved item you own. To help you become better acquainted with the winter wear you’re unearthing, we’ve pinpointed four types of sleeves and given you a brief rundown on their characters.

Trumpet Sleeve — A sleeve that begins at the natural armhole and carries straight on down to the elbow, where it flares out into a trumpet-esque form.

Raglan – A sleeve, generally of 1/2 or 3/4 length, that sweeps up to the neckline via diagonal seams that angle from the underarm to the neckline. Circa 1850s.

Bishop — A full sleeve that becomes more billowy as it travels down the arm to the wrist, where it is then gathered with a cuff.

Amadis – A close-fitting sleeve, often with a pleated, slighty puffed shoulder, that ends in a tight, buttoned cuff at the wrist.

Which style of sleeve would you like to wear to ‘arm’ yourself against the cold this season?

9 Responses to Style Glossary: Sleeve It to Me

  1. fashionsastranger 10/20/2011 at 11:32 am #

    I think I like the bishop or amadis sleeve the best. They keep in the warmth and are super cool!!
    Amy xoxox
    http://fashionsastranger.wordpress.com

  2. Samantha Manzella (@sammanzella) 10/20/2011 at 12:17 pm #

    I wear blouses with bishop sleeves all the time and didn’t know what they were called. Thanks for informing me, Modcloth! It’s one of my favorite types of sleeves…it’s ultra-flattering and very glamorous with just the right amount of vintage appeal. ;)

  3. Alexis 10/20/2011 at 2:19 pm #

    Amadis sleeve all the way!

  4. Claire 10/20/2011 at 3:24 pm #

    I love bishop sleeves! They have the perfect amount of vintage feel and stylish! Plus, they do still keep you warm on those rainy days. ;D

  5. Laura 10/20/2011 at 3:42 pm #

    This is really neat! I was always confused about what was the proper naming for (what I now know) is bishop sleeves! :-)

  6. Ciara 10/20/2011 at 4:07 pm #

    I like all the styles, but the Bishop and Amadis are both gorgeous and will layer more easily under jackets and sweaters because of the tight cuffs.

  7. Karalyn Factor 10/21/2011 at 9:22 am #

    The raglan sleeve actually dates back all the way to the middle ages! Do your fashion history homework. ;)

    • Hannah (ModCloth) 10/21/2011 at 10:09 am #

      Hey, Karalyn!

      Thanks for giving me that food for thought :-). I got that date (1850s) from The Fairchild Dictionary of Fashion and Fashion A to Z: An Illustrated Dictionary. Reportedly, the sleeve got its name from a certain Lord Raglan (or Baron Raglan, if you prefer) who was keen on coats with raglan sleeves, so perhaps it’s just the name, and thus the identifiable birth, of the sleeve that came into play in the 1850s and not the actual shape itself.

      I’m doing my homework, I promise! Haha.

  8. heldinea 10/26/2011 at 10:44 am #

    I like the Bishop and Amadis most.

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