14 June 2014

Lingerie Sewing: My Third Bra

It didn't take me long after making my second bra to get to work on the next one. As I mentioned in the last post, I wanted to try bra wadding for padded cups, and powernet for the back band.

The only changes that I made to my pattern this time were to shorten the back band to take into account the stretch of the powernet, and some minor changes to the shape of the upper cup. I used the tutorial on Cloth Habit regarding the use of bra wadding. You can find Part 1Part 2, Part 3 at each of these links.

I used strips of tricot to cover the seaming on inside of the bra wadding. I was going to line the cups with tricot also, but realised that it would have been better to overlay the tricot on the wadding when I joined them together, and sewn them as one. I'm thinking next time I might try that, just to see if it does work! I did line the bra cradle with tricot, as I did with the previous bra.

I tried overlocking the outside edges of the bra cups to squash them (as per tutorial part 3), but unfortunately my overlocker doesn't stitch close enough to the edge, so it didn't make any difference at all!

The fabric I chose is offcuts of some patterned silk that my husband brought back from a business trip to China a few years ago. I used it to line a jacket that I made about two years ago. It has coloured flowers scattered over it, which I tried to cut out to use across the cups, but my first attempt at sewing the bra cups didn't work out - they didn't fit onto the foam bra cups. Although I had trimmed off the seam allowances at the top and underarm on the bra wadding, there still wasn't enough fabric to wrap around the edges. When I re-cut the silk, I added some extra seam allowance at the top and underarm edges to fix that problem (but no flowers).

I ended up with some excess fabric at the bottom of the bra cups, so I just trimmed it off, then basted the fabric to the bra wadding before sewing them into the bra cradle.

The hardest thing about putting this bra together was trying to get the fabric to fit smoothly over the bra wadding. Of course I picked the most slippery unforgiving fabric ever. If in doubt, add extra fabric around the edges - you can always trim it off later, and try not to stretch the fabric as you sew!


Interfacing - stash that was gifted to me
Fabric - scraps of silk
$0.64    Bra wadding
$0.22    Powernet
$0.07    Tricot
$0.66    Underwires
$0.74    Underwire casing
$0.81    Elastic
$0.53    Strap elastic
$0.12    Rings
$0.14    Sliders
$1.54    Back hook closure
$0.54    Thread (rough estimate)

Grand Total  $6.01

I actually thought that the costing was going to come out at more than this with the addition of the bra wadding and powernet, but it uses such a small amount that it didn't add up to much at all!

I know all the white on, well, everything except the silk doesn't really go with the cream of the silk, but I only have white elastic and straps at this stage, so I just went with what I have. Fit-wise, it is the most comfortable bra I have made so far. I'll definitely keep going with using bra wadding. I didn't quite get the strap placement right on the back (one of the straps kept slipping off my shoulder all day!), so there's something to fix for the next version that I use with a stretch band.


  1. Wow, that looks fantastic!

  2. Wow, really impressive! So beautiful...

  3. Excellent work. I've recently decided to give this a go myself and am currently scouting out the necessary supplies - ugh, there are so many bits and bobs needed. Do you mind sharing where you bought your supplies?

    1. Sure thing! Most of the supplies for this bra (everything except the outer fabric and thread), were from E&M Greenfield here in Sydney. You do have to buy everything in bulk though, so it's a bit of a commitment before you start. I have also bought other supplies since this from Metro Fabrics in Tempe. There is no minimum on anything (although there may be if you don't attend in person), but the overall prices are higher. They have a larger range of rings and sliders. I ended up with 7mm strap elastic from Greenfield's as they did not have the matching findings for the wider elastic. Odd, I know. Hope this helps, they both have websites where you can find their contact information.

  4. Thank you. I really miss living in Sydney :( I dare say we'll be back down there for a weekend some time this year - tigerboy might just have to get ready for a lingerie accessories buying trip (I'll sell it to him as being for his benefit)

    1. Do whatever you need to get him on board! I think my husband is still waiting patiently for me to make something a little more risque. Just be aware though, that Greenfield's aren't open on weekends, so you might need to make it a LONG weekend!