–noun, plural -mans.
1. a woman’s mantle with capelike arm pieces instead of sleeves.
2. a long outer robe worn by Turks.


1575–85; syncopated var. of doliman, dolyman

Dolman sleeves, sometimes called batwing sleeves, are sleeves that are cut deep and wide at the shoulder, with armholes extending almost to the waist. The sleeves taper to the wrist, and when the arms are held outward the fabric hangs in a long wing. Unlike set-in sleeves, dolman sleeves are usually cut as one piece with the top of a dress, blouse, jacket, or coat. Full and roomy, the sweeping sleeve had been used for women’s clothing since around 1910 but reached a peak of popularity in the early 1940s. “

Read more: Dolman Sleeves – Fashion, Costume, and Culture: Clothing, Headwear, Body Decorations, and Footwear through the Ages

These look like something out of the 80’s or 90’s to me, but it says they were actually popular in the 1940’s. Either way, I like them, especially with the cropped look and sweater material. The print is cute, too. 🙂

photo courtesy of

Here’s a drawing from a 1940’s sewing pattern with dolman sleeves. It seems that we’ve made them a bit more dramatic since then……

And…… Ah-Ha!!!!! When I was looking for the 40’s version of a dolman sleeve, I found THESE……turns out I was right when they reminded me of the 80’s. haha! These are both sewing patterns from that decade.

Yeah, the sleeves on these are a lot more dramatic than on the 40’s version.
And I’m glad to know that I’m not crazy. 😉 At leat not too crazy.