Far out, where has the summer gone?? I had the best intentions of making and blogging heaps over summer, goals which I half-achieved: plenty of making, not so much blogging! I guess after exams were all finally over, I felt much more like getting away from my desk and being creative than I wanted to just sit and write about it. Then Christmas, always a crazy time of year – then I was off jet-setting on an international adventure! I spent most of January in Canada, travelling solo, and was lucky enough to finally meet the amazing Erin in person and spend a whole weekend sightseeing and talking bras with her! I realised at the time that it had been almost six months since I’d made a bra for myself, but learning some alteration and drafting techniques from Erin (who is an amazing teacher by the way – if you’re lucky enough to live on the same continent as her, definitely go and check out her amazing studio!) definitely got me inspired and ready to make myself some new lingerie.
It was pretty fortuitous then, in the very week I got back to Melbourne, that two of my favourite lingerie pattern designers had released some new patterns! One of the reasons I hadn’t made myself a new bra in ages was that I was getting a little bored of my TNT bra pattern, the Boylston – although it’s a great fit, the shape under clothes isn’t always as smooth and flattering as I would like. Besides I wanted some slightly different style bras – gotta keep things interesting! And even though I have a very full lingerie draw at this point, I’ve been starting to do a clear out of both old RTW and me-made bras that don’t fit any more (but saving them for parts!). I’d also been waiting for the release of the Harriet for about a year at this point, so I felt I had more than enough excuses to buy it straight away and give it a go!
Things also worked out rather well in that I happened to have everything to make this set just as it wanted it already in hand. I’d already had some fabulous bright red stretch satin and this gorgeous matching lace on hand for ages, and after seeing all the beautiful Valentine’s Day inspired sets, I wanted to make something on theme too! After I turned my shoe boxes full of elastics and hardware upside down, I found I had everything I needed to match – red underwire casing and elastic from a half-used Merckwaerdigh findings kit; fancy red elastic I’d just bought in the Montreal fabric district; and straps and a back closure scavenged from a red RTW bra that doesn’t fit any more but wasn’t too old and yuck! For wires, I used a pair of 38 regular wires Erin gave me to try when I saw her – although her amazing vertical Bliss wires are my usual go-to, they’re a touch longer than the wire line of the Harriet. Given I didn’t want to cut them down for a pattern I wasn’t sure would work yet, I used the regular wires as they were the perfect length and shape for the pattern.
I made my usual size of 30E – long-time readers of the blog will know I pretty much make this size exclusively, regardless of the pattern; I find that this size always fits me, even with the discrepancies that occur in measuring techniques between designers. This is also the size equivalent to the 30F I sew in the Watson, also by Cloth Habit, as the two patterns use different sizing systems. And I can confirm it’s very true to size! The cups are a beautiful fit, and I think the band is just about right – it may be sliiiiiightly roomy but for the moment I’m willing to put this down to very stretchy fabric and elastics. The only alteration I made was my standard bridge-narrowing, which I do for every bra pattern. Guys, I love this pattern! The style lines are very flattering, and the bra looks just as pretty on as it does off; and, more importantly one might argue, it looks great under clothes – a perfect balance between a rounded and natural shape.
But we’re not done with this set yet! Another brand new pattern for me makes it’s debut on the blog: the Esme knickers from Evie la Luve! I bought these aaaaaaaages ago in a sale on Kollabora, but haven’t made a lingerie set since with the right kind of lace to make them up. They went together super easily, and look very cute on too. I don’t have any other patterns which have the cross-over look detail at the front, and I think it’s a gorgeous design feature! They’re not the most comfortable under I’ve made – like most “cheeky” style patterns, these just want to ride riiight up on me, all of the time. But still, for occasional wear, they’re more than fine 😛
Well, I think we can officially safely say my bra-making sew-jo is back! I see plenty more Harriets in my making future: I’m really keen to try a one with cut-down Bliss wires, to see if this perfects the fit for me, as well as altering the pattern to make a plunge bra, as I think that would be a super easy alteration on this pattern! I’ve also seen several foam Harriets on Instagram and now I need one. Buuuuut let’s not get ahead of ourselves, Harriet isn’t the only new bra pattern on the block!! The Esplanade bra from Orange Lingerie was released the same week, and it’s safe to say I’m equally excited to try it! So stay tuned for more new underwear makes real soon 😉
Until next time!
(which will be actually in the near future this time, I promise)
Miss Maddy xx