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Adding thumb loops
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Jeff Jeff
(TwoFortyJeff) - F
Adding thumb loops on 11/01/2011 21:24:44 MDT Print View

Has anyone tried adding thumb loops to an existing commercial garment? There are a few base layers and light fleece tops that I would like a lot better if they didn't ride up.

I'd love to hear about success, failure, or any ideas for doing it.

Mark Fowler
(KramRelwof) - MLife

Locale: Namadgi
Thumb loops on 11/02/2011 01:12:51 MDT Print View

I haven't added them to a product but my 200 weight zip neck merino has them built in. They work well when using poles but I haven't had a long sleeve close fitting top since I started using poles so no comparisions.

Daniel Allen
(Dan_Quixote) - F

Locale: below the mountains (AK)
Re: Adding thumb loops on 11/02/2011 05:14:54 MDT Print View

I chopped some tacky ones into some REI synth long-sleeve tees, and I really like them ( I just wish I placed them symmetrically.) I tried doing similar with a cheapo waffle-knit long-john top which had fairly short arms, and it wasn't comfortable at all.

So far, the REI ones are holding up quite well through occasional use over a couple years. =)

Jeff Jeff
(TwoFortyJeff) - F
Re: Adding thumb loops on 11/02/2011 07:10:47 MDT Print View

Any suggestions on how to finish them? Cutting the loop should be easy enough. Should I just fold the fabric back on itself and run a line of stitching along it? That doesn't seem like the best solution. Maybe finish it with some 1/4 inch tape? Just bar tack around the whole thing like a button hole?

Ben Smith
(goosefeet) - MLife

Locale: Georgia
Re: Re: Adding thumb loops on 11/02/2011 07:17:55 MDT Print View

The button hole method would probably be the easiest and most durable option. Just sew the bar tack first, then cut the slit in the middle.

David Chenault
(DaveC) - BPL Staff - F

Locale: Crown of the Continent
adding thumb loops on 11/02/2011 07:30:53 MDT Print View

The sleeves on my Rab Boreas were so long I added some. They're great.

I thought about using the button-hole setting on my machine, but the longest option was too short (I made them 2.5" long (ithink)). I sewed a line of stitching around the long rectangle of the shape I wanted, then went over all four sides with the densest overcasting stitch my machine has, using the narrowest stitch length available. Cut out the middle, lightly melted the edges. Done.

Matt Mahaney
(Matt_Mahaney) - MLife

Locale: In the District
adding thumb loops on 11/02/2011 11:43:16 MDT Print View

Dave's got the process right. Stitch then cut then melt. I did this to a Sierra Designs Hurricane for my dad. Works well.

Marco A. Sánchez

Locale: The fabulous Pyrenees
Re: Adding thumb loops on 11/02/2011 14:20:51 MDT Print View

If the sleeves are not long enough, you can always sew a loop of elastic braid (3/8" wide or so). Not as good as "real" thumb loop, but it does the trick:

Thumb loop detail

Thumb loop detail

Thumb loop detail

Tip:Make a half twist in the braid (as shown in the photo) before sewing it for greater comfort.


Edited by marcoasn on 11/02/2011 14:22:03 MDT.

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Adding thumb loops on 12/20/2011 21:03:16 MST Print View

This is a nice technique Marco.

I've got a Rab Boreas on the way (Dave C. inspired me, sounds great for winter running/cycling/packing).

If the sleeves aren't long enough to do Dave's style, I'll add loops.