Summer Blossoms Part I

It’s a funny thing; how one longs for the holidays for a respite from the daily grind, and then finds that one is just as busy during the break! I’ll happily admit, however, that I’m busy with far more agreeable things than constant study and work – though I am really beginning to wonder exactly how I managed to find time for sewing during semester, especially considering how well I ended up doing on my assessments! 😛

I really have been sewing up a storm lately, and this means I’ve finally had a chance to work my way through some projects I’d been sitting on for quite some time. For example, I’ve finally almost sewn up all the Merckwaerdigh kits that I bought during the year – the one I’m posting about today, is in fact the last of them (though not the last you’ll see of this particular one…). For this set, I decided on a Boylston bra, with a Watson bikini to match:

Blossom Lingerie Set

Isn’t that print divine? Doesn’t the lace coordinate beautifully? How gorgeous are those coral pink elastics??

Blossom Boylston Bra

I made a few pattern alterations from my previous two Boylstons: I narrowed the bridge a little further, and added a centimetre to the back band. I also constructed the straps a little differently; instead of only finishing the outer raw edge with elastic, I also finished the inside edge, prior to their being sewn into the cups. There were a couple of reasons behind this – one, I was using a stretchy knit fabric, not a woven, and I thought the straps could benefit from the extra stability, and secondly, for aesthetics; I wanted to see how the bra looked with slightly narrower straps, and I couldn’t resist showing off a little more of the wonderfully-coloured elastic. I shorted the back straps too, to compensate for the extra stretch, cutting them at eight inches rather than the specified ten. The slight give they have makes them a nice hybrid between fully elastic straps and rigid fabric ones; more support than elastic alone, but less stiff and more comfortable than having a completely rigid front half. And I really love the look!

IMG_2233

This method of using lace was also a new one to me. I see it fairly often in RTW and was keen to give it a crack. I simply used the upper cup pattern pice but cut the lace at only half the width. It got sewn in at the same time as the outer cup was attached to the foam cup. I then hand-stitched the scalloped edge onto the lycra layer after the bra was completed. I love the look of it, and I think it’s a great way to incorporate the delicate look of lace without sacrificing any support or stability.

IMG_2234

Construction proceeded pretty much as usual, with all seams enclosed using my normal sandwiching technique. The stretchiness of the fashion fabric meant that I could use it on the back band, though there’s a layer of powernet (from my stash, as is the foam) there as well for support. There’s not a lot more to say here, other than I can really tell my lingerie sewing has improved a lot since I started – I’m used to getting the odd overhang or slight misalignment, but this time virtually every seam lined up perfectly! This means either a) my cutting is getting more accurate, b) my seams are getting more accurate, or c) both of the above – but whichever it is, I am certainly very proud of myself 🙂

Not much to say about the matching Watson bikini either, other than, as per usual, the sizing is spot on and the fit super comfortable.

Now, as I hinted above, there is more to come from this kit! I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: if you’re in the fortunate position where your lingerie doesn’t need much fabric (as I am), the Merckwaerdigh kits are fantastic value. From both of the  bra kits I’ve sewn in the past, I was also able to make a matching pair of underwear – but this kit was for both a bra AND underwear. So there was more than enough fabric for two complete sets! I was forced to do a little divvying up – the nice elastics went to this set, and the pretty straps and casing to the next (which is almost finished!), and then I supplied the extra needed from my stash. There’s still some fabric and lace left over besides…so I’m thinking garter belt? I guess we’ll see 😉

Blossom Boylston Bra

I’ve got quite the backlog of projects waiting to be blogged about now, as well as many more to be made (including quite a few Christmas gifts for lucky friends and family). So I’ve no doubt at all you’ll be hearing quite a lot from me in the next couple of months. How is everyone’s festive sewing going? Anyone else planning homemade presents this year?

 

Until next time,

Miss Maddy xx

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23 comments

  1. Sian · December 8, 2015

    This is gorgeous! I have a Merckwaerdigh kit on my Christmas list this year so fingers crossed I find that under the tree 😀
    I’m wondering if I might be able to get away with trying to sister size the Boylston bra down to fit me. Looking back through your Boylston posts, I saw you normally cut a 32DD – is that your usual ready to wear size or do you shorten the band/make any other alterations at all? I’m around a 28GG, so I’m thinking if I try it, it’ll have to be a 34DD or 36DD sister sized down, but I’m worried about the cups coming out too shallow as they did for me in the Maya. I might give it a go anyway though!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Miss Maddy · December 9, 2015

      Thanks Sian! Well observed, the 32DD I make in the Marlborough and Boylston is not my RTW size, which is usually a 30E/F. The band sizes in both of these bras, however, run small – so much so that I have to *add* around a centimetre to the back band piece in the 32, which should really be a size too big – so you may not need to shorten the band too much! The cups in the Boylston, however, I find pretty true to size (the Marlborough cups are a little shallow) and from what I’ve read on your blog, it sounds like we have a similarish shape 🙂 I also think the Boylston cup pieces would be easier than the Maya to alter for more projection if you need, because the cross cup seam runs right over the apex, which means you’d just need to increase the curve there for more projection. So I’d say, it’s worth a go!

      Like

  2. Michelle · December 8, 2015

    Beautiful, Maddy! Merckwaerdigh’s kits are some of the most beautiful out there, aren’t they? Just lovely. I’m looking forward to seeing more.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Miss Maddy · December 9, 2015

      Thanks Michelle! I definitely agree 🙂 I’m looking forward to sharing the next round of makes from this kit – and maybe letting myself buy a few more of them now that I’ve finally used the ones I’ve got…

      Liked by 1 person

  3. guerillagarms · December 8, 2015

    Wow these are lovely, and it’s good to know you managed to squeeze two sets out of the fabric!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Miss Maddy · December 9, 2015

      Thank you! Just goes to show that careful cutting and planning always pay off 🙂

      Like

  4. Sofía · December 8, 2015

    So beautiful!! I really love the print!! And the Merckwaerdigh kits are such a good value! I hope to see more bras with this lovely print 🙂
    Besides, it’s fun seeing that you’re working on your summer sewing while I can only think about sewing cozy sweaters! 😛 Winter has come to Barcelona and the temperatures are dropping! But bad weather outside means more time for sewing inside 😉 I have to hurry up if I want to finish all my Christmas sewing on time, and that includes a fancy dress that has to be done by Friday! Oh boy!… I have to go right now!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Miss Maddy · December 9, 2015

      Thanks Sofia, isn’t it gorgeous? I’ve almost finished the next set, and I’m looking forward to posting it in the next couple of weeks 🙂 I have to say one of my favourite things about blogging from the southern hemisphere is getting to see everyone else sewing for the opposite season – it’s quite refreshing! And giving me lots of inspiration for next winter here…

      Good luck getting your Christmas sewing done! I’d better get a shuffle on with mine too…

      Like

  5. braguide · December 8, 2015

    Beautiful! Love the print.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Siobhan · December 8, 2015

    A beautiful set as usual! After swearing to not make gifts, I ended up sewing my friends tying, foldable shopping bags using some vintage fabric from my stash. It was fun and I used up some of my stash – win win!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Miss Maddy · December 9, 2015

      Thanks Siobhan 🙂 definitely sounds like a win there – I wish I were able to use more of my stash for presents this year! Lucky friends, too 😉

      Like

  7. cetakz · December 9, 2015

    Nice bra.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Very pretty! I’m not sewing presents, but I do have a ton of projects lined up?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Miss Maddy · December 11, 2015

      Thanks Linda! Haha I have both presents and personal projects I’m working on at the moment…and somehow I keep working on things for myself instead of the gifts! Might need to change that… 😛

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I’m not sewing presents, but I do have a ton of projects lined up!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Emma @ A Hand Stitched Life · December 11, 2015

    I love this one Maddy! But saying that I really love everything you make. I have another few Boylstons planned, I’ve just got to get the time.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Miss Maddy · December 13, 2015

      Haha that is the hardest part I find. So much to sew, so little time 😛

      Like

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