How Jacket Sleeve Opening Width Should Fit

How It Should Fit: Slight taper from elbow to cuff

When standing upright with your arms at rest, the jacket sleeves should be slim enough to look fitted at the wrist, or Sleeve Opening Width, but not so tight as to cause creasing, twisting, or pulling at the forearms and cuffs. The fit at the biceps and elbows should be generous enough to create the appearance of muscular arms that gradually taper down to the cuff.

Whether you prefer a modern slim fit or a traditional one, there should be enough room around the wrists to allow for range of motion when you bend your arms or reach forward. The jacket’s sleeve opening should not be so tight that it catches on your shirt cuff or prevents you from comfortably slipping your hands in and out of the sleeves.

perfect jacket sleeve opening width

Perfect Jacket Sleeve Opening Width: Cuffs have a clean, smooth, close (but not tight) fit around the wrists.

Jacket Sleeve Opening Width Too Small: Fabric bunching on the forearms

A sign that the jacket’s Sleeve Opening Width may be too small is fabric gathering along the forearm when your arms are at rest or when slightly bending them. In this case, the fabric hugs the forearm too closely. Without enough room to move the fabric stacks on itself, which can make it difficult to slip your shirt cuffs through the jacket’s cuffs. Even if the rest of the jacket fits well, the overall fit will still read as too tight if the sleeves can’t drape smoothly over the arms without getting caught.

Jacket Sleeve Opening Width Too Large: Baggy cuffs

A jacket Sleeve Opening Width that is too large will hang around the wrists and make one’s arms look unflatteringly small inside the sleeves. If there is no noticeable taper in the size of the sleeve from the bicep/elbow area down to the cuff, the Sleeve Opening Width is too wide. Even if you prefer a classic or more traditional fit, keep in mind that the sleeves should outline your arms rather than appear boxy.  

Jacket Sleeve Opening Width vs. Shirt Cuff Around Measurements: Why are they different?

You may notice that your jacket’s Sleeve Opening Width measurement is smaller than your shirt’s Cuff Around measurement. This is because the jacket Sleeve Opening Width is only half of the jacket’s cuff circumference, while the shirt Cuff Around measures the full circumference of the shirt cuff.

Local Tailoring: Can a tailor adjust my jacket Sleeve Opening Width?

Yes. A tailor can adjust the jacket Sleeve Opening Width to dial in your perfect fit. A 0.3”-0.5” adjustment goes a long way with this dimension so make sure not to over-adjust. We recommend minor tailoring adjustments here, about 0.5” maximum, to ensure the sleeve buttons’ functionality is not affected.

If you need a second opinion on how to adjust your tailored jacket size for a better fit or would like to request a remake for more dramatic changes to the Sleeve Opening Width, we recommend submitting a Fit Advice Request to get custom size recommendations for a potential remake. 

More details on tailoring capabilities here.