Thursday, 28 May 2009

Small steps forward

There has been a lot of waiting for this project. The first blockage was the lack of a compass and protractor in order to attempt the bra cup drafting from patternschool. By the time I had fixed this problem, my bra wires and bra sets had arrived from Booby Traps, so I had 2 different sets of wires to try.

I was not entirely sure that the wires I had would be correct for the bra cup block. Stuart Anderson says he uses a 14D cup wire (14.3cm diameter) for a 12D or DD block - I was not quite sure why. These wires are all supposedly 12D.
The first set of wires (removed from an old RTW bra)showed me why it was so uncomfortable, they are the 36 degree full coverage wires that are at risk of digging in, per Stuart Anderson at patternschool. It was, however, a 14.3cm, or 14D diameter, according to the pattern school table. I believe the sizing of the bra was USA 34D (I told you it was an old bra - I promise I cut it up years ago). The Booby Traps wires (Australian source), ordered as 12D, also were 14D diameter according to the patternschool table, so why doesn't patternschool call a 14.3cm diameter wire a 12D? The Booby Traps wires had the apparently more widely used 20ish degree tail, so I started with these wires to draft the cups.

This was a lot of fun. It did take rather a long time, but I carefully did it twice to make sure I was correct. Unfortunately neither my graph paper, my ruler, nor my compass are precision instruments, but my pattern looks roughly the same shape as the pieces I rubbed off my RTW bra. Unfortunately my drafted pattern looks quite a bit larger than the RTW rubbing. I stopped at this point for some consideration!

Here are the two kits I received from Booby Traps. I am a little disappointed in the colour matching. The reds are very different and none of the pink/peach colours are the same. I do not like the hand of the fabrics, which is the major peril of internet shopping. The laces are very soft, and I am pleased with them. I am hoping the fabrics improve dramatically with washing, or I will just be using the notions, lace and elastics.


Anonymous said...

This is very interesting, Karen. Why not use the icky fabrics for a muslin?

katherine h said...

This looks all very adventurous. I must admit I gave up on the bra pages at patternschool. Bramakers supply have info on wire sizes. Here is a link to their regular wires
here is a link to their page that gives links to wire info. Look in the left column under "information to download"
Wires are sized for B cups. There is some info in this link
(I know you are not an A cup, but I forget where to find the full table of wire sizes...this post has good info in it even if you are not an A cup)
In Beverley's book, she explains how Australian sizes are different than other countries because we work in 2 cm increments not 2.5 cm increments. I think Stuart uses the Australian sizing...just something to be mindful of when ordering from different countries.

Here I am giving all this info...however I admit I have only ever made 3 bras...I'm just an armchair bra sewer!

gwensews said...

Very interesting, all this bra sewing going on. I would use those mis-matched fabrics for the first bra--check the fit.

MaryPat R said...

They are very pretty even if they don't match.

Deb said...

It will be interesting to see how you go with these, as the other comments say the disappointing fabrics might be good as a muslin anyway.

I've made various pieces of lingerie in the past but never attempted a bra, but I would like to as rtw never seem to last long or fit correctly. However I haven't been able to find a good source of supplies here on the Sunshine Coast though so I might have to look elsewhere.