Sunday, January 27, 2013

Blue marle jersey and creamy lace set


I'm very happy with this latest set, I just feel like I am getting happier with each one!
The bra is made using KwikSew 3300 (my review of this pattern here), the undies with lace across the top are my old faithful McCalls 2772, and the other pair with the two diagonal strips of lace are a pattern very kindly sent to me by katherine h, lingerie creator extraordinaire.  Thanks so much Katherine  :)
This is a very cute undies pattern.  It's fits somewhere between a bikini and a boy-leg style, a hybrid of the two.  The construction is a bit more involved than the McCalls bikini but it's nice to have something different.  I really like how the back leg edge is on the fold.  A really interesting feature.
The set is made from a blue marle cotton-mix jersey (leftovers from this hoodie) and a lovely creamy lace, with creamy yellow lingerie elastic throughout and cream satin ribbon bows for decoration.  The lower bra cup is lined with a thick-ish, stable, non-stretchy knit (leftovers from this skirt), and the bra centre piece and underwire casings were made with lightweight beige cotton voile (leftovers from this top)
The bra sewalong organised by Amy has been absolutely brilliant! If you are new to sewing lingerie I highly recommend checking out her detailed posts on construction.  Her passion for lingerie is sincere and very inspiring!  I've been keeping up with everyone's fitting stories on the Flickr group, and the advice and tips given have been invaluable.



The nitty gritty about my bra; this will be of interest to my fellow lingerie nerds only....

This is the sixth time I have made up the KwikSew pattern, and the first time as a 32A and without a moulded cup insert.
I lined the lower cups with a thick-ish, stable, non-stretchy knit; overlapped with and then sewn to the seam allowances..  This gives a bit more needed oomph to that flimsy blue jersey fabric..
The straps: usually I go with a plain, non-adjustable bra strap relying on the stretch inherent in the fabric to provide the ease factor....  (did someone just say "slacker!"?)  this time I followed the instructions and interfaced the straps, then satin-stitched a piece of elastic to the lower back ends to allow for the stretch.  Here's where things get creative.... my elastic options (and well, everything else too) are kind of limited here in Perth but I do still want to stubbornly but loyally support my local shops.  My lace is a lovely ivory creamy colour so I chose the "skin tone" lingerie elastic to go with it.  But the lingerie elastic is not very heavy duty on its own and I worried it would not stand up to strains of bra strap duty.  So I zig-zagged a strip of more heavy-duty, braided 8mm white elastic to the back.  This provides hidden strength, and the colour from the right side still matches everything else in the set.
The straps are adjustable... and if there is one thing I'm super disappointed about it is that the only sliders I could get are pure white... not happy, Jan!  To my eye they stand out like a sore thumb.
For the same reason (limited colour choices) I had to choose a one-hooked, hook and eye closure; this being the only size available in cream.  I'm actually fine with that, not being of a figure type that needs heavy-duty support in the chestal region, ahem.  At least the colour matches!  I just trimmed the back pieces to fit.
I cut the centre piece backing and the underwire casings from small scraps of beige voile, and yes, I did obsessively switch between blue, beige and white thread so that the stitching matches the fabric.
I used cream-coloured satin ribbon to stabilise the lace upper cups, the same ribbon that I used for the decorative bows on all three items.

45 comments:

  1. These are my favouriete ones you've done yet. They are AMAZING!

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  2. What a fabulous set - congratulations! I particularly like the 'hybrid' knickers (I am a 'boy-shorts fan!) - is the pattern available?

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  3. Did you make the bra size 32A, Carolyn? Are you happy with your "new" sizing? Pretty set!

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  4. wow you are really becoming the expert on your undies now these look great - not sure I could deal with changing threads as often as you did, but the end results are good. So far I have only used lycra and lace for my undies - Sigrid spoilt me by taking me to the best ever lingerie sewing supply shop ever (you would go wild in there) but I am really tempted at making a nice soft cotton set.

    If you haven't already done it, check out Sigrids sewing tutorials that she has on bra making too

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  5. Oh that is a nice set. I will bookmark the site w/ the tutorials. Thanks so much.

    And, your daughters sundress is just gorgeous. Your daughter is a beautiful lady :)

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  6. Fantastic Carolyn, all this bra-making is so exciting. I love what you did with the elastic and strengthening it from the back, great idea! Brilliant use of fabric scraps too.

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  7. Hi, just a thought, maybe you could paint the strap sliders with a nail polish that matches the fabric? Gorgeous job, very inspiring.

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  8. Great set Carolyn. One day I might sew myself a bra, yours is looking mighty comfy.

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  9. I'm wondering what your internet options might be for greater variety in sliders and hooks? I know it costs a fortune to ship between the US or Britain and Australia, but given that a lot of the garment manufacturing trade is located in Asia, perhaps you might have some luck there? With all your other amazing talents, I just know you speak Chinese as well! :-> If that's not an option, I suppose on your next jaunt to Europe you could put this on your to do list. I know I've got 'coupon shops' in Montmartre on my list. I'm told that means 'remnants' and I'm very curious...

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  10. What a fantastic set! Lovely, really lovely. The sew-along is being super informative and I agree Amy is so passionate about this and so supportive, I feel bad for her when I fail yet againg in the fitting.
    Lovely knickers, I like the different shape you achieve.
    Ah, Carolyn! I do admire your skills! : D

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  11. Oh wow! I'm pretty much in awe with your bra sewing and the panties look very cute, too. Love the lace detail!

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  12. Beautiful! This set looks so great!

    I know exactly what you mean about the color limitations of the rings and slides! Clear plastic, silver or gold coated ones have become my go to when I can not find a color match. Other "tricks" include altering the strap so the slide is the rear of the bra where it coordinates with the elastic and hook and eye or, making a strap in an alternate color that coordinates with the bra and the slide. Just some ideas for when you have limited selection!

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  13. Green with envy here in the UK. I really must have a go at bra making .... though it would be more of an engineering project for me. You really are so inspiring.

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  14. Fabulous set. How do you like the fit without the foam lining? I just finished my first wearable bra (yeah) and while it is super comfortable and the fit is great, it's weird to not have the foam lining smoothing everything over. Perhaps that's next on the agenda. I love your jersey/lace combination though. And the boyshort undies are intriguing. Thanks.

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  15. Fabulous set! You have made such a good job of it. It is difficult to get everything you need & still support local shops. I have taken some useful pieces from virtually unworn bras that had foam lined cups - I just can't get along with foam linings. We'll see how it turns out anyway.

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  16. WOW! This set is so beautiful. What a lot of work to put into a bra. Can I ask, how long it took you? I am trying to decide if I want to invest the time and patience. ;) Although I'm sorely tempted by all the beautiful ones you turn out.

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    1. Thank you!
      If you’ve got everything you need it takes no longer than a day to make a bra, whether it even takes a full day depends on distractions. Really only a few hours, uninterrupted.

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  17. Permanent markers would likely workmonmthe sliders also. The set looks lovely as usual.

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  18. These are nice, and they just get better!

    What you call "marled" I would call "heathered." Is it because we are on different continents?

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    1. yes, different countries, different words! It's interesting, isn't it? I've always known that type of white-speckled, variegated jersey knit to be "marle"

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  19. I am glad someone else is committed to their local shops even if it means making compromises. It is so sad when those convenient little places close down due to all the Internet competition.
    If you didn't change between colored threads, you would always notice, so it is worth the time. I have to behavior modify myself with chocolates when I take shortcuts with my sewing.

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  20. Your new set is lovely. What a great idea with the elastic. I have sourced good bra elastic from Lincraft but colors are an issue and I still haven't figured out how I am going to get around this.

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  21. Sometimes plastic will take just enough dye to tint... Maybe next time you have a pot of dye for a project, you could experiment? It has worked for me before with certain types of plastic buttons and zippers. Very beautiful sewing as always!

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    1. Thank you K. and yes I have considered experimenting! Amy dyed lingerie findings successfully. I will definitely give it a try some day :)

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  22. Another cute set! It's hard to clearly see the colour of the slides in the pictures but I can appreciate the annoyance of not getting the notions you need to finish a project properly. There are a couple of suppliers in the Netherlands who have an extensive range of lingerie fixings. The shipping would be pricy, but it might be worth it on a bulk order.

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  23. Another gorgeous set and agree that Amy is just wonderful with all her information and the shared knowledge on the Flickr group is amazing. Curious how you like this new bra without the moulded cup?

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    1. Sharon; I haven't gone without a moulded cup insert for a while so it will take a bit of getting used to again. But it's nice to have variety :) And one can't have pretty and lacey with the foam cups!

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  24. All Fantastic! I like the new undie style too!

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  25. Very inspiring. Maybe I'll give underwear a try one day!

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  26. How pretty. The no insert bras are so much cooler for hot weather.
    I admire your dedication to thread changing. I have just swapped my way through a black and white colour blocked top and the thread changing for a mere two colours nearly drove me batty, so I am super impressed with your attention to detail in doing it for underpinnings!
    You are most inspiring with your lingerie posts. I still cannot get past knickers. Mental block!

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  27. These look super pretty! I am too scared to tackle making lingerie yet but one day, Gadget. One day!

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  28. Don't overlook the "liner" fabric (from elingeria) to line lower cups - really light, but also really firm, better in my opinion than thicker knits..

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  29. Oh, la! Does the pattern come without underwires, bra?

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    1. I'm sorry, this one does not!
      However there are several patterns without underwires available... Jalie 3131 is very cute and well worth checking out, and it has a Youtube video tutorial on how to construct it... hope this helps
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I6_Wp_btwQk

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  30. Any tips on working with jersey? I tried to make a bra from a lightweight jersey knit and it puckers weirdly, the band rolls up...but yours looks okay, how did you do it?

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    1. Hmmm, without seeing it, it's hard to judge. Did you line the cups? Did you use a pattern with an underwire?
      My fabric on its own rolls up too, but once I had attached the lingerie elastic to the edges, the elastic stabilises the edge and there is no rolling up.

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  31. I you'd like to do that ! Very impressed. (je voudrais savoir faire ça ! Je suis très impressionnée).

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  32. Gorgeous, as always, Carolyn. It looks as though you sew the underwires in to each new set. Thrifty me -- I'd probably use one pair of underwires and move them from set to set. Speaking of thrift, have you shopped a thrift store for different coloured sliders?

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  33. Really pretty, Carolyn! I think my next bra is going to be a knit, too. Something comfy and easy. I really want to thank you so much for your participation and golden encouragement along the way. It means a lot. And for bringing along so many Aussies! (I do think you were the majority!). I had so much fun *meeting* women round the world and you especially have such a inventive, passionate stitching culture.

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  34. Carolyn, these are fantastic! Even in Melbourne I can't seem to find all the bits and pieces so will take a leaf out of your book and use what is around. I am using the same pattern so your reviews are very helpful and inspiring.

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  35. Why don't you spray paint the sliders? It's something I'm going to try and see how it goes. Awesome post!

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  36. These look really sweet Carolyn! I have only tried the undies pattern in mesh...good to see it can be made up in jersey as well. Oh, the possibilities!

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