Friday, January 2, 2015

Getting Started with Bra-Making

For quite some time, I have wanted to make a bra.  (I know I am quite scatterbrained.) So.... I joined the bra-making group on Facebook.  I have watched the bra-making class on Craftsy.  After much struggle(more on that in the next post), I found a pattern that goes near to my size: the Bravo Bra 2. This pattern closely resembles my absolute favorite bra--the Elomi Energise. I'm hoping to buy the bra and a kit to start working on a fitting bra after Christmas.

Looking at the Elomi Energise and the Bravo Bra 2 side by side, you will notice horizontal seaming with a divided lower cup and a power bar at the side.  The major difference in the design is that the Elomi bra is raised higher in the center front, which I must admit that I like.

I also want a bra-making book.  The problem is, I can only buy one so I am stuck on which one to buy:
Anne St. Claire's Intimately Yours: Bras That Fit and Jennifer Lynn Matthews-Fairbanks's Bare Essentials: Construction and Pattern Drafting for Lingerie Design. I'm am also considering purchasing Monica Bravo's videos: Bras 101 and Bras 102, which are available as DVDs or instant downloads. I hear that they are much better than the Craftsy class, and they were recently half off.  My main concerns at this point are fitting the bra and perhaps making a sports bra.  Also available is Beverly Johnson's Bramaker's Manual, but it is ridiculously expensive, and it's my opinion (from viewing the table of contents) that Anne St. Claire's and Jennifer Lynne Matthews-Fairbanks books cover much of the same material and together they cost less than the Bramaker's  Manual and are sometimes available at your local library. In addition to that, the Matthews-Fairbanks book includes a pattern which is also downloadable.  

I want to make just five kinds of bras: a comfortable one that looks nice, a sports bra, a strapless bra, a longline bra and a nursing bra. I hope to make variations such as balconette, Demi, and plunge bras as well.  I may even try my hand at drafting the bras! We shall see.

I fully plan to post everything I learn as I make this first bra!

As I find new materials on bra-making, I will add them here.

Norma Loehr's Demystifying Bra Fitting and Construction is another resource. At $15, this eBook has been recommended in the bra making Facebook group and all over the blogosphere. 

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