For my January make, I decided to focus on bras and panties. I sew all my clothes, and my old bras and underpants were in a real sad state. They have been so for sometime, really. That meant it was time to learn a new sewing skill: bra making! I’ve been wanting to sew a bra for a while, but I had that silly fear – the one that creeps up and inhibits you from moving forward sometimes. The main hurdle was not per se the sewing of the bra itself, rather having the right fabrics and notions for a pattern. I couldn’t quite wrap my head around it for some reason. I knew a kit would be the best way to get started with confidence, so I asked for the Sophie Hines Euler Bralette + Arccos Undies patterns and kits for Christmas.
Not surprisingly, I got the navy blue kits. I just LOVE blue, as you know. Both the bra and panties kits come with a gorgeous bamboo jersey fabric and a mesh fabric. The bra sewing kit states that there are sufficient fabric and notions to make one Euler Bra, and the undie sewing kit should make two pairs of panties. However, as I am size M on her chart, I was able to make far more! Between the two kits, I was able to make 2 bras and 4 panties! I did have to add a few bits and pieces, but not much.
Because the bra sewing kit provides sufficient notions for a view B Euler Bralette, you will have a left over clasp if you choose the view A (which I did). You do then need to add in two rings and two sliders, as well as a firm elastic for the under-bust band, but I happened to have those on hand. There was even sufficient fabric for me to cover the under-bust band (Sophie explains how to do this in her instructions) that I added, as the color of elastic I had did not match the fabric. As for the panties, I had enough elastic from the undie sewing kit to finish three of the panties. On the fourth, I added some of my own elastic that I had laying around.
Considering this was my first time working with a fiddly bra, I really should have just done one at a time. However, I decided to batch sew, and it ended up taking me far longer than it should have. For some reason, I kept getting confused with the directions. I feel like this is more my own problem than a problem of the directions though, because whenever I finally got it, the directions made complete sense. In fact, it’s really a pretty intuitive bra to sew! I think where I got lost most was in the beginning when it wasn’t entirely clear to me the difference between “strap”, “side band” and “center accent”. It’s actually pretty clear as you go along. I blame the confusion mainly on the fact that I rarely sew from other patterns and, when I do, I rarely read through the directions. Oops!
One thing I would advise when sewing up the bra is to baste even more that what is advised! These are such little pieces of fabric, and the seam allowance is minimal (I tend to prefer more seam allowance), so getting things lined up perfectly is really important.
The panties were super easy to sew up. The pattern is actually very similar to my own self-drafted panties, so I barely even looked at the directions for these. My main bit of advice when sewing these (as well as the bra, and any knit, for that matter) is to be sure you’re using the correct needle. Take my word, folks! I can already see a small hole forming in one pair of panties because I used the wrong needle to start with. Damn.
I love these panties though! The bamboo fabric is so soft, and the fit is perfect. It hugs in the right places so that my bum remains nicely covered, but they still feel a bit sexy.
Not only was this my first experience sewing a bra, it is also the first time I’ve ever had matching bra and underwear! Better late than never, yo! I’ve worn my bra a couple times and it turns out I cut it a bit too small. I measured as an M, but I started worrying that the bra would be a bit too wide when I was trying it on before sewing. Wrong. I should have stuck with what the chart said, because the S is a bit on the small side. I still consider it a successful first foray into bra sewing. And, luckily, my 4 pairs of panties fit like a dream!