First, thank you to Twisted Poppy and SilverMom for their advice on the set-in sleeves that have been keeping me up at night. I can't express how much I appreciate the sewing community that is willing to share their experiences and help out with problem solving ideas. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, thank you so much!
I took the coat and sleeves to work and during my lunch break, I unstitched my stitches. When I came home, I replaced the one row of ease stitching with two rows between the stitching line and cut edge.
The row of ease-stitching closest to the cut edge was stitched with a 3.5 stitch length and then the next row was stitched at a 3.0 stitch length.
When it came to sewing the sleeve to the armhole I replaced my regular presser foot with a walking foot, turned down the stitching speed and had my tweezers near by in case I needed to shift some fabric along the way.
This is how it turned out.
It is still not pretty.
I think I will have to agree with SilverMom about that "dang cotton" which appears to be a real beast to tame. Cotton stretch sateen is proving to be a poor fabric choice for this design as it is showing every little pucker and wrinkle like nobody's business. I should have broke the bank and picked up some non-stretch red satin instead. But then I'm sure there might be cursing about sewing slippery fabrics.
I'm going to to try to do some more work on this, unstitch a few spots. I might even have to resort to unstitching the whole thing and recutting the shape of the sleeve cap as Twisted Poppy suggested. Oh and maybe running to the fabric store and investing in a pressing mitt. I'm close, but not quite there yet.
This project is taking more time than I ever thought that it would. For now, I think I should put it aside and put my energy towards those chemo caps since my Lenten sewing project has taken a back seat while the sewing mojo took a hit and I was distracted by these damn sleeves. And there is that wrap dress sew-along too. So many plans, so little time!
Stay tuned and happy sewing!