Blouse Fitting – Shoulder and Side Seam Adjustments

 More sari blouse fitting ideas – structural sari blouse designs – with adjustments at side seams and shoulders

Solving the puzzle of sari blouse fitting has been a creative journey for me. I started the series with Cholakaaptas – the sari blouse adjusters. In between some quick sari blouse fitting ideas came to me. The topic is taking a turn here.

Side Seam and Shoulder Adjustments 

Shoulder and Side SeamAlterations Illustrations

To some of us, there comes a situation in life that weight gain has consumed all the seam allowance and still can’t fit into blouse. In such case, bodice length may also need to be increased.

I have been thinking of using a side seam panel for such requirements. This idea involves alteration of the structural design of the blouse. I had a second thought – who will have such affection for any blouse? I was about to drop the topic. At the same time, a very charming and dynamic family friend – Shreemathi Divya Rajesh shared photos of a jacket with a diamond-shaped zippered panels for armhole adjustment! Woo hoo! I am not the only one who keeps thinking of such topics! So, there might be some girls who find these ideas useful and thought of writing this article.

The zippered armpit panels of the jacket gave inspiration to the shoulder seam adjustments ideas. These can be used in combination with side seam panel. Width of the panels are about 2 inch (including seam allowances at two sides). Width may be changed as per need.

1. Adding side seam panel

This idea is to sew a fabric strip to the side seam. The side seams are undone first. Then, a strip (length equal to side seam after hemming the two ends) is sewn to join the undone side seam. A matching coloured or contrasting coloured fabric strip can be used. Adding multiple strips is also good as it gives structural design to the blouse. But, the style may not be compatible with all the blouse designs.

Sari Blouse Adjustments with Side Seam Panels - Single and two panel styles illustrations depicting structural sari blouse designs..

2. Shoulder seam adjustments

The idea in shoulder seam adjustments is to add armhole depth, depth to bust point and in turn, blouse length. There are many design variations in this.

Sari Blouse Adjustments with Shoulder Panels - three variations in length of panels creating structural sari blouse designs.

Adding a fabric strip at the shoulder from neck base to sleeve hem –

Undo shoulder seam. From this shoulder end, cut along the sleeve centre till the hem. Measure this opening. Cut a fabric strip of the same length, hem the ends. Now, sew this fabric strip along the opening.

Adding a fabric strip to the shoulder –

In this method, shoulder seam is undone. About 1-2 inch long cut is made in the sleeve centre. Measure the shoulder seam. Take a rectangular fabric strip 2-3 inch longer than shoulder seam after hemming at neck. Sew the fabric strip at the shoulder tapering towards sleeve. Raw edge at the sleeve cap can be embroidered or just glued to finish.

A shoulder patch or panel attachment for slit at the shoulder –

In this variation, shoulder seam is undone from blouse shoulder centre and about 1 inch cut is made in sleeve centre. This hole or slit is backed with a petal shaped fabric panel with an embroidered raw edge finishing or by finishing it as illustrated below.

Design variations

More ideas Sari Blouse Adjustments at Shoulder - multiple panels style and elastic versions depicting structural sari blouse designs

More ideas – Sari Blouse Adjustments at Shoulder

Lots of design variation can be done in all the three shoulder seam adjustments ideas mentioned above. Contrast coloured panels, sheer panels, embroidered panels, patchwork panels, etc make the plain blouses attractive. A bold styling can be done with just fabric wrapped elastic attachment at the neck, shoulder and sleeve hem instead of fabric.

Thank you, Divyakka for your inputs because of which this post exists today. Dear Tantu Enthusiast, hope like side seam and shoulder adjustment ideas. Please share your thoughts. Who knows where from the inspiration comes! Thank you!


A nature lover and dreamer who expresses herself as an artist, fashion designer and blogger. Persued B.Sc fashion design at Karavali College (Mangaluru University 2003 - 2006) with first rank. Former lecturer for fashion designing at Gloria College, Puttur for five years (2006-2011). Blogger since 2013.


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