Lingerie Sewing: A List of Resources

LINGERIE-RESOURCES

We’ve had such a great reaction to our lingerie posts. (Yay! And thank you!). I think it’s clear that both Tasia and I are pretty obsessed with this new skill we’re learning. We’re super excited to share what we learn, and show you what we make, of course!

We won’t claim to be experts (yet!), but we’ve definitely learned lots in a short amount of time, and done lots of digging for supplies, patterns, and information. I thought it would be great to put all of this information in one place. So let’s dig into the websites, shops, and blogs that we have found and enjoyed so far.

Kits, Patterns, and Supplies

Booby Traps http://www.boobytraps.com.au/ Kits, patterns, supplies
Bra Makers http://www.bramakerssupply.com/ Kits, patterns, supplies
Bravo Bella Bras http://bravobellabras.com/ Kits, patterns, supplies, reference material
Danglez http://www.danglez.nl/ Kits, supplies
English Couture http://englishcouture.co.uk/ A bit of everything! Kits (“bra starter packs”, patterns, supplies, reference material
Fabric Depot http://fabricdepotco.com/ Kits, patterns (from what I can tell you have to call or mail in your order)
Fleuriste https://www.etsy.com/shop/fleuriste Foldover elastics and other trims
Hooks and Wires https://www.etsy.com/shop/Summerset Hand dyed bra kits
Lijfgoed http://www.lijfgoed.nl/webshop/ Kits, supplies
Make Bra http://www.makebra.com/online-shop/ Kits, patterns, supplies
Merckwaerdigh http://stores.ebay.com/Merckwaerdigh or https://www.etsy.com/shop/merckwaerdigh Kits, patterns, supplies
Mrs Bao http://www.mrsbao.se/category.php?id_category=21 Supplies
Ohhh Lulu https://www.etsy.com/ca/shop/OhhhLuluSews Patterns
Porcelynne https://www.etsy.com/shop/porcelynne Supplies
Sew Sassy http://sewsassy.com/ Patterns, supplies
Sewing Chest http://www.bramaker.co.uk/catalog/ Patterns, supplies

Book Recommendations

When we took our bra making class, our teacher, Johanne Brousseau, highly recommended The Bra-Makers Manual by Beverly Johnson. The cost of the book ($85 CAD) is a bit steep for some, but they also offer the CD for just over half the price.

Several readers have recommended the e-book Demystifying Bra Fitting and Construction by Norma Loehr.

More reader recommendations:

Bare Essentials: Underwear and Bare Essentials: Bras by Jennifer Lynne Matthews-Fairbanks, who runs the Porcelynne shop.

Looking for inspiration?

Amy’s blog, Cloth Habit, is a great place to start (and stay for hours, or that just me?), and she did a Bra-Making Sew Along. I also love Novita’s blog, verypurpleperson, here’s her lingerie tag!

A couple of readers have also recommended Sigrid’s blog, for some great projects and tutorials.

Free patterns, just because.

Here are some free patterns I’ve found: Make Bra’s Hipster Pattern, Cloth Habit’s Rosy Ladyshorts, Fehr Trade’s Lacey Thong Pattern, Madalynne Amerson Undies

More lists…

Here are some other great lists of resources! Cloth Habit: Where to Shop: Bra & Lingerie Making Dixie DIY: Dixie’s Big Fat List of of Bra Suppliers and FAQ

Enjoy all of these great lingerie making resources! I’d like to build on this list, so if you have any recommendations I would love to hear them. Happy browsing!

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39 Responses to Lingerie Sewing: A List of Resources

  1. Hilde May 7, 2014 at 6:29 am #

    Sigrid has some wonderful tutorials on her blog and regularly shows what gorgeous things she makes. I consider her blog as one of the best sources about sewing your own lingerie, she inspires a lot of people I think.

    http://sigridsewingprojects.blogspot.com

  2. Melissa May 7, 2014 at 6:30 am #

    Thank you for this amazing list! I’ve been following along with all of your posts and have been inspired to start making my own lingerie. This will make the task a lot easier.

  3. nothy May 7, 2014 at 9:05 am #

    This list is a great resource.

  4. Megan May 7, 2014 at 9:07 am #

    Thanks for all this bra making information, you both have really been getting me inspired to give bra-making a try. I’m just still so scared/lazy!
    p.s. Make Bra’s hipster pattern and Cloth Habits Rosy Lady shorts have the same URL in the link (unless I’m doing something wrong).

    • Caroline Amanda May 8, 2014 at 8:17 am #

      Hi Megan, thanks for letting me know. Totally my error, I will fix this!

    • Faustina May 12, 2014 at 6:56 am #

      So do Danglez and English Couture.

  5. Paula May 7, 2014 at 10:12 am #

    Does anyone have any suggestions for bra making for people with teeny boobs? Its a real downer to NEVER be able to find a bra small enough to fit the cups, yet be big enough around for an adult… kids sizes are to small around, the cups are too close together and too short in the straps. Thanks!

    • Tasia May 7, 2014 at 10:37 am #

      That’s the beauty of making your own! You can combine the right band size and the right cup size for a bra that fits you. It’s easy to take in the cups if there is too much space when you try it on. (On the next version, that is.) I’m not large in the cups but I’m narrow in the band making for a larger cup/wire size, which makes it hard to shop for a bra. You can get the right bra size for your ribcage as well as the cups, even if that’s an uncommon combination in stores like 40A or 30D.
      I’ll try to share more about sewing for a small chest. I’m probably small to average size? 32C, but not a very full cup. More of a B cup but it ends up being a C because of the small band http://clothhabit.com/ sews lingerie and makes (what looks like from the photos) a small to average cup size.

  6. Samina May 7, 2014 at 10:22 am #

    Great list of resources – thank you so much for compiling it. I’m going to bookmark this page for when I finally work up the courage to give it a go!

  7. Maaike May 7, 2014 at 12:38 pm #

    Thanks for all the inspiration and great list of resources! Here’s one more free pattern from an independent fabric store that (naturally) sells Sewaholic patterns. :)
    http://blog.hartsfabric.com/2013/06/03/sew-your-own-underwear/

  8. Becky May 7, 2014 at 1:13 pm #

    Thanks for this! I’ve been wanting to try making some lingerie, but I keep getting hung up on where to find supplies. That, and my definite need for a padded bra– I get cold way too easily to do otherwise!

  9. Rebecca May 7, 2014 at 2:06 pm #

    Awesome list! I’ve been loving all you’re lingerie posts! I just ordered a kit and pattern from Merckwaerdigh-so excited to get started making my first bra and hopefully a swimsuit soon too :)

  10. Miss Crayola Creepy May 7, 2014 at 2:56 pm #

    Whoa, what an awesome list! Thanks so much for putting it all together! When all the Project Sewn craziness is done I want to settle down and make something special for myself and I’m going to start here!

    I found this company on Etsy and they sell a ton of stuff, but the fold over elastic would be good for the list: https://www.etsy.com/shop/fleuriste/search?search_query=fold+over+elastic&order=date_desc&view_type=gallery&ref=shop_search

  11. Sue May 7, 2014 at 3:06 pm #

    ???? Advice please. Caroline Amanda mentioned recently that 38D = 36E. Never heard that, and can never find something that fits. Like Tasia, I’d like a 32C w/ just slightly smaller cups.

    Should I just get a 34B and make the band smaller if I’m not making my own from scratch? Seems though that the 34B is designed for wider shoulders than mine, so the straps angle too far out on my shoulders. Guess I’ll have to jump in and make my own.

    Your resources make it sound possible, though. Thanks loads!

    • Tasia May 7, 2014 at 3:11 pm #

      It depends on the pattern, in my Merckwaerdigh patterns, the 30D is the 32C is the 34B is the 36A. All have the exact same cup, but shorten/lengthen the band from the B cup starting point. So to turn a 34B into a 32C all you would need to do is shorten the band.
      In my Pin Up Girls Classic Bra, the 30D is not exactly the same as the 32C, but it’s close. The cup volume for the D is a little bigger, so in theory the 32B cup would be a little smaller than the C. But the wire size is the same for all of the above.
      Strap placement depends on the pattern – the Pin Up Girls Shelley and Classic patterns both have close-set straps so they definitely don’t fall off. The Merckwaerdigh Mix 30 bra has further set straps.
      All in all, experimenting is key! In the class they taught us to think of each bra as an experiment and a progression towards a better fitting bra. Make one in the closest size, wear it all day, and see what you might want to change later.
      Hope this helps!

      • Tasia May 7, 2014 at 3:13 pm #

        (Change for Bra #2, I mean. Then wear bra #2, see what you like and make changes again for bra #3.)

    • Shannon May 8, 2014 at 6:07 pm #

      You might find this graphic useful!

      http://i.imgur.com/Hhwoarq.jpg

  12. lynl May 7, 2014 at 8:38 pm #

    Boob Camp! I am in the middle of a 5-day class at Bra Makers Supply in Hamilton, Ontario with the international bra guru herself. I can’t recommend it enough! Our class has 8 students, many from far away (California, BC, Tennessee, Quebec) all coming specifically for this with Beverly- she’s amazing! You start with your Classic pattern and then learn to draft and sew as many different styles in the 5 days that you can, all from your perfect fit and even then some professional tweaking of your new drafts so you leave with incredible stuff! The price looks like it’s a lot as a lump sum but divided between the 5 days, it’s well worth it for master drafting and fitting and tips and suggestions and fabric alternatives, and on and on. It makes a fabulous retreat or use some vacation time. You will not be disappointed. Feeling so lucky (I’m local) I decided to just go for it!! Personalised for whatever your skill level, too! Love!!

  13. Kat May 8, 2014 at 2:04 am #

    This is purrrfect because I just ordered some polylaminate foam to make a padded bra (I don’t like the soft cup ones)!

  14. Ms McCall May 8, 2014 at 10:47 am #

    Fantastic list. I would highly recommend the book written by the lady that runs the Porcelynne store, there’s one for underwear and one for Bras. I only have the bra one, but it is a fantastic book that lays out the construction and includes a basic bra pattern for a large range of sizes. It doesn’t really have that much on fitting, but it does have info on changing the style of the basic bra pattern and even drafting your own pattern. I’m not sure why this book doesn’t get more love out there! No affiliation with the lady, just a happy customer!

    http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=ntt_athr_dp_sr_1?_encoding=UTF8&field-author=Jennifer%20Lynne%20Matthews-Fairbanks&search-alias=books

    • Caroline Amanda May 11, 2014 at 5:36 pm #

      Thank you! I will add this book to the list :)

  15. Kate May 8, 2014 at 10:53 am #

    The fashion school ESMOD sells pattern making books and they have one about women’s underwear. It’s called “become a pattern drafter, women’s underwear”. The chapters concerning bras are good. I don’t like the panties patterns, they are a bit dated to my taste and the explanations are not as good as you would hope, I think that book is intended to be used with the help of a teacher.
    I have made a bra with this book and it fitted perfectly, you are right, it is really fun to make ! Same for swimwear!

  16. Shannon May 8, 2014 at 6:13 pm #

    Thank you for this post! Are you aware of any bra patterns with a racerback style?

  17. Amanda May 8, 2014 at 7:15 pm #

    Awesome list!!! I was JUST wishing for a list like this – supplies can be very hard to source :) Thank you!! :)

  18. Kristin Lion May 9, 2014 at 2:57 am #

    thank you! I have been daydreaming about making bras since I saw you and Tasia’s great results!

  19. Nane May 9, 2014 at 2:35 pm #

    Waw, just reading that list make me want to start sewing lingerie. Just so you know, on the website of danglez.nl they say they have stopped making lingerie and gymnastic clothing on demand (“Wij zijn gestopt met het maken van lingerie en turnkleding op bestelling”). I don’t read they have stopped selling supplies. And they also offer 30% on stock till end of May. :-)

    • Caroline Amanda May 11, 2014 at 5:37 pm #

      Yes it seems that she is not closing shop after all! I will edit the list :) thanks!

  20. Amy May 9, 2014 at 3:43 pm #

    Aww, thanks for the mention. I really enjoy making and teaching about lingerie. I wrote the owner of Danglez last summer and she told me was going to close down her web shop but keep her local business in the Netherlands. I’m guessing she decided to stay online business for awhile!

  21. Caroline Côté May 11, 2014 at 6:47 pm #

    Thanks for this useful post! I am no expert at sewing lingerie, but I tried a scientific experiment to compare 5 panties patterns last year, and most were free patterns.

    Here are the low riders :
    – So Zo’s Famous Pants,
    – T-shirt Undies from Indigorchid
    – Hipster from MakeBra.

    And high waisted :
    – Ohhh lulu’s Betty High Waist Undies ($)
    – Vera Venus Grannie-Pantie.

    To read about my comparison experiment, feel free to drop by my humble blog (http://igloovert.blogspot.ca/search/label/Underpants). Most were not super successful because of my elastic choices, but I adore my grannie-Panties under a dress/skirt!! I am planning a round 2 of underpants sewing this spring and your posts on lingerie had me trying to fit some mommy-time vacations with a class in Hamilton! :D

  22. Faustina May 12, 2014 at 7:08 am #

    Soooo…… My friend and I have been having a debate/research conversation over the last several years about bras. We both sew quite well, AND we used to work together selling bras. Breastfeeding bras, specifically. So, we know what to look for in a good fit.

    I typically wear a 36E or 34F depending in the brand and shape etc. I am slightly broad in the ribcage, and pretty average in the cup. I can’t figure out which pattern size to buy. It seems like all of the patterns are based on the limited understanding that most North Americans have of bra sizing.

    My friend wears a 28K (in UK sizes, they do the lettering of cups differently than North American manufacturers do. In NA sizes she’d be roughly a 28N). She is very petite in the ribcage and much larger than average in the cup. What pattern size would she start with? The best we can think of is to take apart a bra that she already has to copy it.

    Neither of us can figure out what wire sizes to buy, either. Again, it seems like the sizing advice is based on either fairly small cups or on poor sizing advice.

    • Caroline Amanda May 13, 2014 at 6:53 pm #

      Hi Faustina. Good timing! Amy from Cloth Habit did a post about underwires today on her blog. In that post she also links to two previous posts that she did on underwires and fitting (the fitting one is especially great!). It’s all very informative and helpful. I am not an expert in fitting just yet so I won’t venture to give you advice, but I think the posts will help. Here is a link:
      http://clothhabit.com/2014/05/bra-tips-fitting-an-underwire/

  23. Estelle May 12, 2014 at 2:49 pm #

    Hi Caroline,

    Love this list! I’ve bought from some of the sellers you’ve listed at the top but always nice to find new places with new patterns and different components :)

    You might like the lingerie-making guide I’ve created for my website, Esty Lingerie > http://www.estylingerie.com/How-to-Make-Lingerie Still being added to so there are lots more guides to come!

    Estelle x

    • Caroline Amanda May 13, 2014 at 6:41 pm #

      Thank you so much! I’m going to check it out!

  24. Estelle May 13, 2014 at 11:12 am #

    (Oh, by the way just spotted the http://englishcouture.co.uk/ link actually goes to the Danglez site)

    • Caroline Amanda May 13, 2014 at 6:41 pm #

      Thanks Estelle, all fixed now :)

  25. Sue May 15, 2014 at 3:49 pm #

    @ Tasia and Shannon: Thanks so very much! Now it makes sense, and that graphic is great. Would be a funny poster for the sewing room, but I will refrain :)

  26. Jane Saunders June 18, 2014 at 5:16 pm #

    Great list! Thanks for the helpful advice Tasia. I’ll definitely bookmark https://www.etsy.com/ca/listing/76412725/bra-sewing-pattern-bhs10-with-5x-bras-by and come back to it this weekend once I’ve got more time.

    Just started sewing and now my husband says that’s all I do! :) Lingerie-making sounds very interesting and I’ve checking out a few sites for inspiration such as http://www.theblacklace.com/ and https://www.victoriassecret.com/ which have stunning designs and styles. Just finding patterns for the ones I like is the only problem.

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