First Challenge For 2013....Done!
There is nothing like a new challenge to kick off a new year and Kwik Sew 3300 provided me with just the challenge. I have been making undies for a while but had not attempted a bra since a one off in the 1990's. My original 1990's bra was self drafted and although it was successful, I found the process time consuming and the results not quite what I suspected. For this particular project I invested in Kwik Sew 3300. I have to say, having a decent pattern and construction details made all of the difference and although the project was time consuming, it was very much worth it.
Since this was a trial bra, I chose to use a relatively unused synthetic tee shirt for the main fabric and some left over lace from this top as a contrast.
I prefer my bras slightly padded and briefly considered making this one without, when I had a brainwave. What if I interlined it with some super fine microfleece. I was initially concerned that this may make the centre seam a little bumpy and annoying to wear, but decided to take a risk and do it anyway. I am glad I did because my fears were unfounded and this proved to be a fantastic solution.
The pattern has you make the straps by ironing interfacing to the reverse of the straps before construction and stitching a short length of elastic between the strap and the back. I wasn't satisfied with this strap construction, preferring a more elastic strap. I decided to make my straps more like swimwear straps. I stitched and turned my straps before threading through a narrow braided elastic, cutting it slightly short and 3 step zigzagging to hold the elastic in place. I now have adequate stretch in my straps so that when I shrug my shoulders I have some movement. I was frugal with the underwires as well. I simply cut existing wires from an old bra that I no long wanted. I bought the lingerie elastic from Lincraft. It is a lovely heavy lingerie elastic of a grade you would find on rtw bras.
With a little careful pattern manipulation I also managed to squeeze a pair of undies out of my fabric as well. I used an old cotton tee for the lining. Once again I used McCall's 5400 as the pattern. This time however I reduced the elastic to 50cm around each leg and 60cm around the waist. I also reduced the width in the crotch by 5mm on each side. I am really pleased with the way these turned out.
I am really keen now to buy some supplies and make a second set.