Hi Everyone! I tried something new last weekend. Bra-making! I've been wanting to dip my toes into the bra-making waters for a while now and Madalynne's new pattern Mallori Lane is what gave me the push to attempt making lingerie.
I ordered my plush back elastic, strapping and sliders from different ebay shops. The elastic came in either 3m or 5m bundles. I got the 5m, and I have quite a bit left over for another project. The strapping only came in a 2m bundle so I bought one and hoped for the best. (2.5m is specified in the pattern). I ended up having some left over strapping too, so that wasn't a problem. I didn't do a second horizontal strap across the back, but I would have had enough. I just thought it looked fine without it.
I used fabrics that were already in my stash. Long-time readers may recognize the lace from my Lace Lady Skater and Lace Bomber Jacket. It seems to be the lace that keeps on giving! I used a scrap of white interlock to underline it. Spray basting is recommended in the instructions, and after sewing the bralette up I can see why! It would have made life a lot easier, had I had some on hand.
I wasn't quite sure how to marry up the scallops and the bottom band piece but ended up cutting the interlock as specified. I then matched that to the starting point of the scallops, so the lace pieces were longer. The insides are so pretty, because most of the seams are covered with the plush back elastic. The 2 lower side seams are overlocker, but the rest of the bralette was sewn on my normal machine with a zigzag.
Even though I've never sewn a bra before, I found the instructions quite easy to follow. The only bit that got me confused was putting the straps together, but with comparison to other bras and some fiddling I got there in the end. I wasn't sure which side of the strapping was the 'right side' but I chose to have the matte side facing upwards, and the shiny side towards my skin, I'm not convinced about how the sliders look at the front, so next time I'll probably put them at the back.
My very unsubstantial bust circumference is 29 inches, and the XXS on the pattern is 30-31". I cut out the XXS and ended up taking in each side of the front piece a fair bit, but the bottom band was fine, and didn't need any alteration. The sides were gaping a bit even after I'd taken them in, so I added a little tuck into the seamline, which isn't particularly noticeable. Maybe adding in that 2nd horizontal strap would have helped.
I wasn't quite sure about whereabouts to put the front and back of the straps, and ended up putting the bralette on my mannequin and guestimating where they should be. Some notches would have saved me some time there. That being said, this project only took 2 1/2 hours, and was the perfect way to spend a Saturday afternoon.
Mallori Lane is pretty supportive (for my tiny bust anyways) and I feel totally secure wearing it. The scallops on the bottom bands make me stupidly happy. It's a bit of a workout to get in and out of, but that may just be because I'm used to a back closure.
It was very refreshing to print out a 7 page PDF (including instructions!) I didn't have to tape a single page together since every pattern piece has it's own page.
Thank you all for reading and a huge thank you to Edward for setting up a little indoor studio this evening with fancy lights and everything! I do need to iron the backdrop next time though... I hope you've enjoyed seeing something a bit different on the blog. I was going to take pictures of Mallori Lane on my mannequin, but it's so hard to get a feel for what it looks like on an actual body, so I thought I'd better give modelling it a go. It's not so bad, because it's almost waist length anyways. Obviously, when I go out I will wear something over it!