Tightening French Cuffs

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by hopkins_student, Dec 8, 2004.

  1. hopkins_student

    hopkins_student Senior member

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    Several people here have mentioned that French cuffs sold on most RTW shirts are way too large.  Obviously there is more than enough room in the buttonhole for the cufflinks, so could you narrow the effective length of the buttonhole by sewing several loops of thread just inside the far end (closest to the edge of the cuff) of the buttonhole?  This should make the space in the buttonhole more narrow and make the cuff tighter, should it not?  Would this be a reasonable way to do this, or would it result in the cufflink not covering that end of the buttonhole, and causing things to look off?  Opinions?
     


  2. ernest

    ernest Senior member

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    Sounds like a good idea but you will not reduce much
     


  3. Alexander Kabbaz

    Alexander Kabbaz Senior member

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    If your cufflink front is large enough to cover the sewn loops and the cufflink back will pass through the smaller hole, do it. You can tighten by as much as 1/2" this way.
    I actually make shirts for certain clients where the linkhole is an inch in fron the edge. Gives a great flair to the cuffs.
     


  4. Rabbi Mark

    Rabbi Mark Well-Known Member

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    I find what is more determinant of my cuff "wallow" is the type of link.  Silk knots bind the two (four) sides very close together, swivel-backs less close, and my Tiffany one-piece links (basically a curved bar with a lump on either end) have the most generous spacing.

    Shortening the hole in the manner you describe sound promising, but depending on the shirt you will likely exclude all but very narrow swivel-backs from use as cufflinks -- I have the damnest time with some shirts, chiefly TM Lewin, to be honest -- shoving the silk knots through the very tightly sewn holes.  H&K is much better, in my experience.
     


  5. Smooth Jazz

    Smooth Jazz Well-Known Member

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    Could you please post a picture example. I would have thought that doing that would make the cuffs look a little bizarre and also make it difficult to fit inside the suit cuff.
     


  6. Alexander Kabbaz

    Alexander Kabbaz Senior member

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    Smooth Jazz
    I think I kept one of those cuffs in the client's pattern. I'll try to take a picture tomorrow. Bizarre? Bizarre? Well, I never. Yes, tight fit inside the suit sleeve, but the elegance is worth it. Ahhh, yes. Elegant. Eccentric, perhaps. Ecclectic, maybe. Bizarre?.? [​IMG] Kabbaz, Kelly & Sons Bizarre R Us
     


  7. zjpj83

    zjpj83 Senior member

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    Mr. Kabbaz -
    Have often wondered - could you make one shirt sleeve opening larger to accommodate a watch? But then this would look silly.... I like my cuffs to be rather tight, particularly french cuffs, but then am frustrated when I cant get at my watch to see the time? Are there any solutions to this problem at all?
     


  8. Alexander Kabbaz

    Alexander Kabbaz Senior member

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    85% of the shirts I make have different size left and right cuffs.
     


  9. j

    j (stands for Jerk) Admin

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    This is quite common. I believe Ascot Chang (among others) has a checkbox (or whatever they have now) for an additional 1/4" or 1/2" for watch allowance.
     


  10. Phil

    Phil Senior member

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    Yes, a good shirtmaker will suggest this exact thing, to compensate for the thickness of a watch. All of my T & A shirts and BB shirts are made this way. The left wrist measurement is 1/2" bigger.
     


  11. armscye

    armscye Senior member

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    This allowance can be crudely achieved in barrel cuffs by moving the fastening button sideways, and in French cuffs by adding a second inner link buttonhole. Neither is ideal, but both achieve the correct visual result.
     


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