The Search for Undies continues…

Last time I tried to make underwear it did not go well. I had underwear on my list for my 2018 make 9 because I really want to be able to wear an entirely me-made outfit. It is crazy that I’ve made many bras and pairs of jeans that I wear constantly but still haven’t made a pair of underwear that fits. This time around I tried the Watson Bikini pattern by Cloth Habit using fabric scraps left over from my yoga cloth Avery Leggings. I used picot elastic left over from some bra kits.

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Overall this is a huge improvement from my last attempt. However, there is still some extra fabric in the back, giving them some granny panties vibes. I’m not sure if this is just a sizing issue or a sway back issue or a combination. I take my hip measurement slightly below where my hips meet my torso because that is the widest part of my body.However, my underwear don’t need to fit my thighs. Next time I’m going to use a measurement from higher up to figure out my size.

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I don’t think I’m going to make a sway back adjustment just yet though because I’m hoping that will get me a little closer to a better fit. I think I’ll try this pattern again in a smaller size but if that doesn’t work I might try a different style. I’m hoping that I won’t have as much of an issue from the sway back with a hipster version.

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Another Harriet plus my first Undies

I got a bra and underwear kit from Tailor Made shop a while ago – probably over a year ago and I finally felt inspired to sew it up. I love the color gray and I really liked this kit because the lace is mostly gray but the touch of pink gives it a girly twist. I used my tried and true Harriet Bra pattern by Cloth Habit. For the panties pattern I had been hearing so many great things about the Frankie panties by Evie La Luve that I decided to give them a try.

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I’ve made this bra so many times at this point there isn’t too much to say about it. I love it! Since my fit adjustments at camp the fit has been consistently perfect for me. For some reason though every time I make this bra I always have to do some seam ripping. All the little pieces and the shifty fabric always just gets me.

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This was my first time sewing underwear and I was so excited because I’ve heard so many things about how underwear is quick and easy to whip up and I had also heard so many great things specifically about the Frankie Panties that I was feeling pretty confident. This may be a controversial statement but I really don’t love them.

My measurements put me at a size L. Typically I buy size S underwear but it would make sense that my measurements would put me at a larger size since the top half of me is generally size small and I’m a pear shape. I decided to stick with a size large and I was excited because maybe I’ve just been wearing the wrong size underwear?

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The kit I had originally gotten came with picot elastic instead of fold over elastic or the elastic trim around the legs. It looks like the underwear kits today are a bit different than the one I got. I decided I really wanted lacy elastic and fold over elastic so I ordered some more from Tailor Made shop. I was so surprised when my lace elastic came and it matches my stretch elastic!

Since I placed the order I had to take a break in the middle of sewing these underwear so what other people describe as a quick and easy sew ended up taking me weeks – mostly because once I changed focus I got distracted and didn’t come back to them right away.

I was so excited when I finally put the lace elastic on because it just matches so well. Adding the elastic at the legs though did make things a little bit more girly than I had intended. This is not necessarily bad but it just doesn’t really feel like it suits me.

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There are several issues with these underwear. They are a lot taller than most of my other underwear. Also the waistband is a bit loose. I’m guessing this is because of my pear shaped body and because I didn’t grade between sizes like I typically would have with another garment.

However the real problem is the extra fabric in the back. Because of my sway back the underwear come up much higher in the back than in the front and there is fabric pooling above my butt. No – I’m not going to post pics of this on the internet but let me tell you – it is NOT CUTE.

Many people have had success with this pattern. Most of the people I’ve seen rave about it are tall. Rachel from Maker Style has raved about it and has a self-proclaimed “Column-y body” so maybe this pattern just suits that body type better. I do like all of the options for lace and the different variations so it may be worth giving this pattern another try. If I did I would definitely do a sway back adjustment. I also would either size down to a medium or I would grade from a size medium at the waist to large at the hips. I also might try shortening it? Is anyone else so short they need to shorten their underwear patterns???

Orange Harriet

What more can I say about the Cloth Habit Harriet Bra that I haven’t already said? This is my sixth Harriet (two originals from Camp plus the trio that I just blogged about a couple of weeks back) and if I’m being honest it isn’t even my most recent one… so you have at least one more blog post to look forward to with this same pattern.

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This one actually may be my favorite one though! This lace just really speaks to me and I loved every second of working with it. It is just so beautiful and delicate but also a interesting color. This is yet another kit from the Tailor Made Shop.

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I really like this lace – its definitely more fun than the other bras I’ve made so far. The orange elastic adds a bit more fun quirk to this bra. Eventually I might try dying notions so that everything actually matches but for now I’ve been loving the contrasting elastic and straps.

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On past bras I’ve struggled with the lace and lining shifting around and not lining up. On this one I basted the lace to the lining with spray glue after attaching all of the pieces of the cup so that everything stayed lined up. Things were still a little shifty but it definitely helped a lot.

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Three More Harriets

I made my first two Harriet Bras at Camp workroom social a last year and about a month after that I went on a bit of a bra making binge. These bras have all been done for a while but I recently got a dress form so I was inspired to actually photograph and blog them! The pattern is the Harriet Bra by Cloth Habit. I had enough fabric left over from my bras I made at camp that I was pretty sure I could get another bra out of it. I ordered two findings kits along with some additional underwires from Bra Makers Supply.

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Since my nude colored bra that I made previously was more of a muslin I decided to start with making a nude colored bra first. Cutting out and sewing seemed to go a lot faster when I had access to my own cutting mat/rotary cutter and sewing machine.

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One adjustment that I did made to my pattern was to reduce the amount of depth on my right upper cup. While I was at camp I removed some of the width from the cup but this made it deeper, which I didn’t particularly like. I traced the curve of my left cup on to my right cup so that they are approximately the same. Reducing the depth meant that my seam was going to be shorter so I would have to adjust the lower cup as well. I ended up only taking about 1/8 inch off of the inner cup and everything worked out fine.

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Other than that I just tried to recreate the steps that I had done at camp. I used my muslin as a reference and wrote down the steps I could remember. At some points I had to go back and add some steps that I forgot but otherwise it went fairly smoothly. The only snag I ran in to was near the end when I went to sew my straps on. The strap elastic from the kit was way too short – and then I remembered that the strap elastic that Bra Maker Supply gives is only enough for a certain kind of strap that is partially made of fabric. I ended up ordering more elastic from Tailor Made Shoppe and putting this bra on hold.

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While I was waiting for my strap elastic to come I went ahead and made a second bra. For this one I used a kit from Tailor Made Shoppe that I had ordered on a whim previously. This was the first time following this pattern where I wasn’t using the exact supplies that we had used in class. I was a little nervous about how everything would turn out especially since I had modified the pattern and if the adjustment didn’t work then I would have two bras that would have the same issue.

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The other issue was that because this lace is much stretchier than the duoplex I would need to line the cups. I cut the upper cup out of lace only but I cut the outer cup, inner cup, bridge, and frame out of both lace and bra lining. I actually cut two lining pieces for the bridge to add stability.

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The main difference with the construction for this was that I wanted the seams to be completely concealed between the lining and the lace. That changed the order of what I was sewing but ended up being about the same amount of time as just sewing an unlined bra. I sewed the outer cups and inner cups together in the lace and the lining and then I sandwiched the upper cup between the lining and the lace lower cup. I used a similar method for assembling the cradle. In the end I’m really happy with the way this turned out and I’ve been wearing it a ton!

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Then, a couple of weeks later I was in a slump after struggling with another project so I really wanted to make a pattern that I had already made and one that was relatively quick – so I decided to make another bra! I made this bra basically in the same way that I made the second bra – only this time I had actual instructions since the Harriet Pattern had been officially released. Turns out – I did the second one right!

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This is another Harriet Bra by Cloth Habit and another kit from Tailor Made Shop. I love the way that navy looks with the magenta – especially the little picots sticking out at the bottom.

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Bra Making at CWS

In October I learned how to make bras at Camp Workroom Social! I took a class taught by Cloth Habit on how to make underwire bras using her upcoming bra pattern.I had previously made two soft bras from Madalynne and also the Sophie Swimsuit from Closet Case Files so I had a little experience with underwires and hooks and eyes but not a ton.

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This is the Harriet Bra by Cloth Habit, which we got to make before the pattern was actually released! We started by making a muslin out of a nude fabric. We also used black thread which helped me see what I was doing for this first test bra. This bra fits way differently than I was used to. The band is much tighter – I definitely need to wear it on the longest hook. This bra is made mostly from duoplex which is super supportive but not very beautiful.img_4299img_4291img_4290

The muslin fit fairly well and is definitely wearable. The changes I made for the second bra were to lower the bridge a bit and also take out a little room from the top of my right cup. I love the amount of support I get from this bra and it definitely feels different from any bra I’ve worn before. It is just a tad uncomfortable because the band is so much tighter than I’m used to but that should stretch out over time.

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Also – for those of you who don’t know what Camp Workroom Social is it is basically a sewing camp for adults! You sign up for a class you are interested in and learn how to do that over a 4 day weekend in the Catskills of New York at the Frost Valley YMCA camp. I met a ton of incredible and talented people. Sewing is usually a solo activity and it was really refreshing to be around other people who love sewing as much as I do. The setting was also beautiful and I got to go on several lovely hikes. Overall it was an incredible experience and I can’t wait to see what classes they offer next year.

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