I have this dream where I have an amazing lingerie wardrobe, and the best part is that many are made by me. Also in this dream they are beautifully displayed and I appear to have fixed my nasty habit of being a complete slob. Alas, despite my efforts to achieve the bra part of this dream, its been complete and utter nightmare.
Having a rather larger cup I decided to steer away from the beloved Watson bra and jump into wired bras. I started with Kwik sews pattern but it wasn’t what I wanted so I moved on Bare Essentials. This book was meant to be my holy grail; it covered grading, drafting, it had patterns as well as the basics of bra making. It was not the solution I was looking for, although it still may be.
The basic instructions on how to make a bra are fantastic and the diagrams are clear, there are no faults there. The problem came with the patterns, judging from my measurements and my experiences with RTW bras I should have been a 30E, but it simply didn’t fit. The cups were completely the wrong shape and gaped at the top. The band was also off. Despite fiddling with all these things I gave up and abandoned bra making for several months.
On returning I’d learned so much about bra fit, I now knew I was really a 30F/32E and bottom heavy. Using a RTW bra I copied the band as it fit me perfectly. I cut a 32F made a muslin and took a lot in from the sides of the cup. I checked that the cups still fit making a quick muslin out of kitchen paper. This was it! This was my bra pattern!
With delight at finding solving Fermat’s last theorem I took out some lovely lace that had a slight stretch out and began to make what was sure to be my best work, what could go wrong?
Everything. Everything could go wrong (I can’t bear to look at the mess I made in lace so sadly there are no pictures). Lace is a nightmare to sew with, but I was handling it so well until I checked the fit. The cups were completely too small and the bridge far too wide. I reacted perfectly rationally by fling the bra across the room. Then I packed all my bra making materials into a biscuit tin and put in on the shelf.
I won’t lie, this is so disheartening for me but I still haven’t given up. I am going to start from scratch. I will buy a bra making kit and make the Watson bra, I hope to god I have some success with this. After that the plan is to make a Boylston bra from Orange Lingerie, and hopefully someday have a perfectly fitting bra. I plan to use Bare Essentials advice on fit with the Boylston bra and a new RTW bra that fits me perfectly to get a good fit. Let’s hope there are pretty bras in my future!
So, have any of you attempted bra making? If so how did you get on? If any of you have any advice PLEASE give it to me, clearly I need it!