The giveaway is now closed! Thank you to everyone who participated, the winner will be announced in a few days! 🙂
I don’t know about you guys, but I’m not a huge fan of suspense (unless it’s in a Hitchcock movie, in which case, bring it on). So I’m glad that I can finally announce the “little something” I’ve been hinting at for the last couple of weeks! As a thank you for all the support, encouragement and welcome I have received so far, I’m doing a little giveaway! I initially planned this to celebrate reaching 100 followers, but things got away from me a bit, so we’re now going to celebrate the 150 followers milestone instead! 😀
Given that lingerie-making is something close to my heart, I decided that I’d put together some bra-making supplies to give away! One of the most common questions I see relating to the topic is: where do I find supplies? So here I’ll list the components of the kit I’ve put together and where they came from…and one lucky person will get these supplies sent to them!
Although perhaps one of the easiest supplies to get hold of, it seems to be the cause of the most confusion: material for the bra. When starting out, choosing the “right” fabric can seem very daunting, especially when so many new words are being thrown around (tricot, duoplex, powernet). But the truth is, so long as you work within the requirements of your pattern and your own needs (e.g. comfort, support), you can use pretty much whatever you like if you go about it the right way! Stretch lace is one of my favourite options: it’s relatively easy to work with (doesn’t fray, isn’t slippery); it’s suitable for most patterns (can be used unlined in stretch patterns, or underlined for non-stretch); and it gives a really pretty, professional looking result – lace is such a popular choice in RTW!
- Sheer denier lining and powermesh – Booby Traps and Joelle’s Fabric Clearance Warehouse, respectively
One fabric alone does not a bra make (well, it can, but usually you need a couple of types). Most bra patterns will require at least some parts of non-stretch; usually the bridge, but often the whole cradle and cups as well. In order to stabilise your fashion fabric (especially a stretch fabric), sheer denier lining is my preference. Light weight, breathable and sheer, it will make any fabric (almost) suitable for bra-making…whilst still keeping things light ‘n’ lacy (if that’s how you like things [that is how I like things]).
What about the stretchy parts of the bra though? Obviously, the back of the bra needs to stretch, so we can’t have non-stretch fabrics there – or what if you have a stretch fabric, but it’s too flimsy? This is where our powermesh/net comes in. This fantastically stretchy fabric comes in a variety of weights, but a mid-weight powernet usually has a good level of firm stretch and recovery for a bra. Or you can do what I do, and buy cheaper light-weight powernet and double it up for the band (still cheaper than a single layer of the good stuff!). It can also be used to underline a stretchy fashion fabric which isn’t firm enough or lacks the recovery required to make it as a bra.
There are three types of elastic in your garden-variety bra: band elastic, underarm/neckline elastic, and strap elastic. What they all have in common vis-a-vis requirements is a soft plush side, which rests against your skin, and good recovery. Band elastic is generally the widest of the three, as it’s the most important in terms of support. Underarm elastic can be a little narrower, as its main function is to keep the bra snug and flush against the skin. The width of strap elastic is generally a matter of personal preference; I never use narrower than 10mm (3/8″), and the greater the width, the more comfortable and supportive they will be.
These are fairly straight forward – this hardware allows you to make your straps adjustable, like RTW. I usually find it easiest to get my strap elastic first, and then rings and sliders in the correct width. They come in a variety of colours and materials; I recommend metal or plated metal over pure plastic, as it’s not as strong (and looks a little cheap, in my opinion). You can often get coloured ones, if you like to match – I find it easiest to keep a few pairs in metallic colours on hand, as they match everything (and look super fancy).
Another very standard part of bra hardware. These you can buy a couple of ways: pre-cut, or a length of continuous hook and eye tape. they both have advantages and disadvantages (tape can be cut to whatever length you like, pre-cut reduces the need to finish the edges). Pre-cut is usually my preference, as I like using lots of different colours and avoiding the hassle of cutting and finishing myself.
Then, of course, you have underwires and wire casing, which I have not included in this kit. Underwires are obviously best sourced yourself, as you’ll need them in your size; casing – well to be honest, it’s because I forgot to order it, but it IS very readily available on eBay and Etsy – but also because I thought this lace would be very well suited to a Watson soft bra, which was the first bra I made and a great pattern, particularly for beginners. Of course it is the choice of the lucky winner, whoever they may be, what they make – and I can’t wait to see what they come up with 🙂 (and they should also, of course, feel free to mix and match with whatever other materials they may like!) And as a general disclaimer, it is beyond the scope of my abilities (and budget) to put together a kit which will work for every pattern and size – so some creativity (not included) may be required! Either way, you’ll have a good starting point and a good idea of what materials to look for with what’s here 🙂
So, how does one enter? Very simple! Leave a comment below, either explaining why you like or would like to sew lingerie, or what you’d make with this kit, or both (the winner will be selected via random number generator). No follows or likes are required (although it would be nice – and following this blog on WordPress or Bloglovin or liking on Facebook will be the best way to find out who the winner is!) The competition is open from when this post is published, and closes Wednesday 8th September, 11:59 PM Melbourne time (GMT+10). It is open internationally 🙂 As a general disclaimer, everything in this kit was purchased with my own funds, and there’s no affiliation to any of the vendors I’ve sourced from.
If you’re looking for more information or suppliers for bra-making and lingerie sewing, you can also check out my Resources page! It has a list of all the suppliers I’ve bought from, plus a few more, and some helpful links and suggestions for more info.
Well, get entering everyone, and spread the word! Best of luck and until next time,
Miss Maddy x