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Bra » Unknown Brand » Brabratory (42) » 28M » Bras » Owner


Measurement Cm
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Fits ribcage0.0
B. perimeter0.0
Stretched Band73.1
Band Length65.2
Stretch ratio1.1
Cup width15.8
Cup depth40.5
Depth ratio2.6
Wire length40.4
Cup height0.0
Cup separation0.1
Gore height18.9
Wing height15.8
Strap width2.0
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Used to fit

This is my second attempt at sewing a bra, and my first attempt at using a self-drafted pattern. Basically, this was designed to be a test of my basic pattern to check the fit and comfort. The sizing is a best guess based on the stretched length of the band, and the fact that my pattern was based off the size 19 cup on Foundations Revealed, indicated to be the same as 28:19/30:18/32:17 etc.

This bra is wireless, and the band is a height which may possibly get the name longline from some companies, but this is by virtue of the fact that it has garment elastic on the lower hem instead of the usual blush hem elastic (the stuff you normally get on bras with the scalloped edges). Most of the materials are from a bra kit I purchased. The cups and cradle are made of a layer of apricot stretch lace and a layer of white non-stretch stabilising lining. The wings are made from two layers of powernet. The bra fastens with 4 rows of 3 columns of hooks and the straps are fully adjustable.

For the curious, I measure 73cm/28.5" under and 118cm/46.5" over my bust when wearing this bra.

The aesthetics of the kit tend to very feminine, but I think that I'd not mind buying a bra in apricot lace anyway. The apricot seems to be close enough to actually being a nude colour on my warm-toned fair skin. The kit was rated for 40DD-48C, and I had more than enough powernet to cut out two sets of wings with the extra hem for the elastic, but I wouldn't really want to make a much larger cup from the amount of cup materials provided. I feel like the bow included was ludicrously small (and I'm contemplating getting something else to put on the gore which won't look pointlessly tiny), but the size range it was designed for may not have this particular issue. A small complaint I'd have for these materials is that while the straps are nice and thick, firm and stable, the elastic designed for edging the bra isn't nearly as strong as the straps, so it's really stretched out in order for the straps to provide any lift. As there was heaps of strap, and I had to trim some off, I'd contemplate maybe using that instead to edge the upper part of the wing which extends down to the clasps if I was to use a similar kit in the future.

The basic pattern design came from the series of articles on Foundations Revealed, which show how to grade a bra block and also how to create a variety of styles of bras. If you have any interest in drafting your own bra patterns, I'd say this is an excellent resource.

I chose to go for a 2-piece cup with a vertical seam as I wanted it to be easy to make changes to the fit if required. This design choice is responsible for the super pointy/retro shape that the final product has. My husband hates it. I actually don't mind, and I think that if I had proper fitted non-stretch clothing (difficult to get if your bust is too large for full bust clothing :/), that this would look more uplifted than bizaare. Maybe a 50s style blouse or dress can be a future sewing project.

My pattern (of which I'd done a couple of cup mock-ups first to make alterations) seems to have provided a good fit. The only issue I had was that despite having thought I'd accounted for it, my breasts were too short for the original cups, so I ended up trimming a bit off the top of the cup. To give some sort of frame of reference, the cup is about 40cm deep around the deepest part, but vertical depth of the cup (length of the cup seam) is only 31.5 cm. This is actually the explanation of a lot of my fit problems with RTW bras. The wings are the right length and the cradle is a good fit.

The garment elastic on the bottom of the bra seems to have been a really good move, as unlike other wireless bras I've tried, it doesn't try to fold under and dig in from the weight of my breasts. The tradeoff is that it wasn't really possible to get equal tensioning on the top and bottom of the bra, and that plus the fact that there are no wires to provide stability throughout the wing (I played with boning the wings, but plastic boning just seemed to want to curl up like the wings do), means the upper part of the wing is a bit saggy. There's a small weird floaty bit between the cups, as they're cut so that they should fit when sitting flat, but obviously won't do that without wires, but the bra does sit flat at the top and bottom owing to the elastic. I think that's just going to be one of those things with wireless bras.

The stitching isn't perfect, but there's nothing too obviously wonky. I don't know if I'd feel happy selling a bra of this quality to someone else (I don't know if anyone would even want a super pointy cup like this, I realise they aren't the fashionable shape), but it's nice enough to wear.

Overall, this bra seems to be a good fit and very comfortable. I think it may get a bit of love as a house bra unless it causes my husband to take too many hits to his sanity score.

If I was to make a bra just like this again, I think I'd play with the relationship between the inner and outer cup a little to see if I can get a slightly more centred look for my breasts, instead of the faintly outward pointing shape with the almost flat plane on the outside. I also wouldn't use straight stitch on the casing for the elastic (oops!) as the garment isn't gathered but stretch. A short zig-zag would be a lot better if I want to include this feature.

Edit: Much to my devastation, after a couple of washes, the band in this bra has stretched phenomenally out to about 80cm stretched length, making it unwearably long. The wings are very short so I'm not sure if it will be possible to take in the band without ruining the shape of the bra. I'm guessing it must be something to do with the materials used. I may need to investigate some sturdier options for next time or aggressively prewash my fabric.

Apricot colorway

This bra is not owned any more

Updated on Feb 04, 2015 Flag this

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  • 1

    Honestly you have done an amazing job. This looks a lot like 1930s bras actually, except they had a thicker underbust band (or perhaps I should say wider, I mean it went further down on the torso, like a mini longline). Love the apricot color!

  • Brava! Brava! (pun intended)

    Wow! What an amazing piece of work! I love it. Did the cup size complicate the process? Being your own live model must have been difficult. It makes me wonder if there's such a thing as a bra maker's dummy with malleable breasts like you have with the rice-filled hold-ups.


  • just a suggestion. I have had to sew many bras myself since it is very hard for me to find them in my size. one thing that I have learned through all of this is that if you do a 3 piece cup it makes you look rounder and not so pointy. my first effort was a 2 piece cup and it looked like two really big cones on my chest, I did not like it at all. Still going to try one other experiment later with a 4 piece cup read it might give better support. Also I sewed in some corset boning in the lower cup made a push up bra. Never have found one in my size.

  • Kristine Being my own fit model has advantages and disadvantages I guess. I can try stuff as I go without having to co-ordinate with another person for a fitting (clothes need a lot of fittings, especially when you're a shape which is nothing like commercial patterns), but it's harder when it comes to stuff like pinning and placing things on your own body. I don't think it would be especially easy to create a dress form for bras construction, or at least not without some very specialised materials, because of the way that bras work by elastic tension, the fact that bodies squish, and once we start including underwires, they need to be levering specific weights. I'm now confident that I have the cradle and wings right for any future projects, so the only thing I'll be fiddling with is cups, which I can at least initially do with my hold-ups full of rice.

    thumper22k I actually went into this construction knowing full well that I'd get this shape from the 2 piece construction. I basically wanted to test out that my cup block was correctly proportioned without having the angle and relationship between multiple cup pieces complicating the issue. Definitely, more pieces will help to give a rounder, more fashionable shape and better lift. I don't really care for around the house. :)

    You could add some of your home-sewn projects to the site! I'd be very interested to see other people's approach to creating bras when there's no patterns available in their size range, and any sort of fit innovations you've come up with.

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Fit information

On Sep 2014 It fit her!

Gore section won't sit flat owing to lack of wires

Bras that fitted her next to this