Saturday, June 19, 2021

Sheer bliss

 Let me start by saying that I love the Ruby Bra pattern with a passion. For me, it is the perfect combination of functionality and practicality. Perfect coverage and I LOVE fold over elastic (FOE).  Like really love the look of edges lined in FOE.  Looking at the last Ruby I made, I could use a little more room, but I don't really think I needed to go up a cup size. Thus the tinkering described below.

For these adjustments, I started with a band size 36 and BCD of 5.0.  I wanted to preserve the neckline, thus I didn't want to go up a size.  My assessment was that I could use a little added volume in the lower cup. That being said, I know how to add volume to a 2 piece cup, but this is a 4 piece with a 3 piece lower cup. I decided to add a couple mm to the inside seams of the lower cup pieces and just a touch of height, mostly on the center bottom piece. Otherwise, the rest of the pieces were the same.  

Isn't that FOE gorgeous?

I had previously purchased a Liberty Lawn kit from Bra builders.  I had some leftover sheer cup lining, powernet and microduoplex (current sentiment towards microduoplex... ugh).  A few months ago I ordered some extra findings and FOE, planning to use the leftovers for some good. I had planned on doing the whole thing in sheer cup lining, but I ended up not having enough. I decided to use the microduoplex for the band and I must say, it looks pretty good, despite the fights we have.  The tissue paper hack was my best bet at dealing with the fussy fabric.

I'm finding that lately, I've been questioning the wires I've been using.  I found what I'm pretty sure are some strapless bra wires in a size 46.  I went through my wire collection and held them up to the cradle, and these were the best I could find to fit the wireline. They were perfect. I did order some longer size 46 wires that should be here this week. I'm finding all my patterns require longer wires, so it'll be nice to have some on hand.  

Overall, I'm really happy with the changes I made.  The fit is fantastic. These little changes will work for non-stretch fabrics, which I have more of. I think I'll definitely be making a few more sheer bras for the summer!

Fabric & Findings: Bra Builders in Plum Pudding

Pattern: The Ruby Full Band Bra from  Bra Maker Supply

Monday, February 1, 2021

The one with the Maya Bra

This year I've decided I'll try to make a bra a month. The bra a week challenge is intriguing, but there's no way I'd come even close to meeting that. So I've decided to scale it down to a practical challenge.  I didn't really envision anything other than making what strikes me at the moment.  No themes, no restrictions, just bras.  Happy year of the bra, this here is my January entry.  

I've made probably 5 Maya bras, and it's definitely among my favorite patterns. This is the first time I've not used foam. I'm ok with that. This version was born of "I want to use this bra kit, but I need to refit the pattern". I opted to use some leftovers (and some lovely lace that I had a ton of) and tried out the new fitting suggestion. 


My last make was a 36G, but this time it suggested 40DD. I thought that wouldn't be a big enough cup since BCD doesn't usually work out too well for me. Seriously, I see BCD measurements and groan.  The final choice was 40E. I printed out a few other sizes near, but ended up going in blind on this one. 


Overall, I'm rather happy. It's quite wearable, but I do think my next make will go up a cup size. It's not tacking against my chest wall as I'd like. The cups are comfortable, but I'm pretty sure a size up would be perfect. 
I also need to scoop a bit out of the armpit. I find a lot of bras tend to rub against my armpit, and taking a small scoop out alleviates that problem. I usually shave off about 1/4 inch or so. 


Since this was a tester of sorts, I used some leftovers, so things didn't perfectly matched. The duoplex used for the cups and bridge, as well as the power net used in the back are from an old kit from Sweet Cups in copper. The band and arm elastic were both from that same kit.  My strap elastics, hook and eye, and rings and sliders all came from The Tailormade Shoppe.  I caught them on sale and ordered a bunch of the elastic and hook and eyes. 

The lace. Oh, the lace. Love, love, love. It's an AliExpress find. I grabbed it in three colors when I found it, because it reminds me of peacock feathers. This is the cream with silver metallic detail. It's. So. Pretty. And this one is my least favorite of the three. The others are purple and pink. They're, well, stunning. The lace is a nice stretch lace that's easy to work with and layers well. My favourite thing about this is the look of the lace against the copper duoplex. It just looks so polished.  

Final thoughts

After thinking about it, I may have actually cut my duoplex from the foam pieces, which means seam allowances are not included (update: I looked at the pieces and could not have. The next bra I went up a side and it was great). I should check into that. That might solve my fit problems. Don't you just love the the fiddleyness of fitting? Live and learn.

I love that I was able to use the scalloped edge at the top and bottom. It just looks whimsical.  I did tack it down with a small zig zag stitch to keep it attached to the duoplex and prevent the edge from folding over on the inside or down between the lace and duoplex.

Lastly, duoplex is easier to sew when dual feed is engaged. I figured out about half way through the first cup that mine wasn't engaged.  10/10 would not recommend forgetting. 

Fabric: Ali Express (lace)  and Sweet Cups (duoplex and powernet )
Findings: Tailor Made Shop and Sweet Cups
Pattern: The Maya Bra from  AFI Atelier