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Nursing Bra Pattern?

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
Anyone sewed nursing bras before? I'd kinda like to take apart one of mine & make a pattern, but that seems like a lot of work. . .& I need a "from scratch" pattern. I have no regular bras to convert to nursing bras. Thanks!
post #2 of 12
: I'm interested too. I have a nursing bra that I love the fit of, but I hate the hooks used. It's a Medela and fits great, and the hooks are easy to undo (you just press a button and it slides out), but I have SO much trouble lining it up to attach it again. I don't have to nurse in public right now, but with baby #2, I'll need to be able to discreetly reattach that thing. I like the plastic hooks that some bras have - those are usually easy to use. Yes! bras have great hooks, but the straps loosen up really easily (I need to sew them in place), and they don't have the support that the Medela one does.
post #3 of 12
As far as I know, I'm the only one here who makes bras from scratch. If anyone has questions about copying or making bras, just send me a PM. I'll give you whatever help I can. I know there are a lot of us here who can't find good bras in our size but know how to sew and making/altering them yourself is really great.
post #4 of 12
I thought I was the only whaky who made bras!!! I'm so glad to hear I'm not the only one!!

The first bra I made was nursing bra that I duped from a regular bra I had. I found that nursing bras were either old-lady-ish or didn't offer support. I also had a REALLY hard time finding nursing bras in my size (34DDD).

If you have a bra that fits you great, then by all means CAREFULLY rip the seams, iron the pieces with starch and trace it to make a pattern. IMO, it takes less time to make a pattern of a great ready made bra than it is to go through sewing crappy pattern after crappy pattern.

Boscopup: Can you just remove the hooks and attach new ones?

edited to add:
One tip when sewing bras: TAKE YOUR TIME!!! Because the stitches are so small and the seam allowences are so thin, there's practically no room for error. So just brew a cup of tea, relax, and take your time with it.
post #5 of 12
This is a really great tutorial on making a nursing bra from a regular bra ->

I did this for all my nursing bras, but I used thicker elastic (3/4 or 1 in non-roll elastic to keep the strap from sliding so far) and I used metal coat hooks for the hooks. You can also use nursing bra clasps that she actually provides links to.

I made three nursing bras this way for less than $15- $13 for all three bras from Ross Dress For Less and less than $2 for the clasps and elastic!
post #6 of 12
Another bra maker here! Altering a regular pattern wouldn't be that hard (that's what I plan on doing) to make a nursing bra, especially if you have a pattern you already like

here are some links, the kwik sew patterns are crap, don't even bother with those.

this one is american:

this one is canadian, has more patterns, lots of intructions, and great customer service:
here's their nursing bra pattern - http://www.bramakers.com/bms_sindex.html
I haven't used it, so I don't know how well it works
post #7 of 12
She - interesting opinion on the Kwik Sew. I have one of their patterns and have been trying to make a regular bra, without success so far. I figured it was because of my fabric (I was using jersey or interlock - both because I already had the scraps (trying out the pattern), and because I liked the ready-to-wear bras made of cotton knit). I have some cotton lycra swimsuit lining that's much stiffer/stronger that I was going to try next until I could afford the whole kit-n-caboodle from bramakers.com.

Should I even bother? I don't have any more to copy (the store bought ones have worn out, and didn't fit properly anyway), although I'm thinking I can probably make a sports bra type with the swimsuit lining and just wait a bit to get a proper pattern...
post #8 of 12
I've never used a Kwik Sew pattern but I'm starting to hear similar stories about them not being very good. Also, they only go up to 40DD so you're out of luck if you're bigger.

For the longest time I thought I was alone doing this. I started bra-making just for myself because I was a hard-to-find size (40J) long before I even became pregnant. Then I starting making them for friends and clients. Did you gals start for similar reasons or did something else draw you in?
post #9 of 12
my current pattern was developed from a kwik sew pattern, which I bought out of convenience. It took several major drafting changes to get it to fit, I was better off starting from scratch, but what can I say? I'm stubborn
The basic cup shape is VERY pointy, not a natural shape at ALL, and I'm pretty sure the grading is wonky, too, which only exacerbates the wierd shape. Rocket boobs might look okay on a 32A, but not on a 34D.

I've heard really good things about the Elan patterns, I'd start there if I were to do it again. The bra maker supply lady just finished writing a book about all things bra making, that would have loads of information. I've been really thinking about buying her templates and starting to make custom bras myself. I'd need a new machine first, though, my singer just isn't up for the challenge. I figured out buying her blocks would actually be saving money compared to my doing all the drafting myself.

I've been making my bras out of a pretty sturdy cotton jersey, so I think it's an excellent choice of fabric I made one out of a cotton/lycra blend and that was a disaster, way too stretchy.

I went to university for apparel design, that's when I started making bras. I continued because I'm a rarer size myself (30DD), and it sure beats spending a fortune on underwear.

I love talking about lingerie
post #10 of 12
Thanks for the info. on bra making, I need more nursing bras and with support. I measured myself and I believe I'm a 40F. I've been procrastinating on making some.
post #11 of 12
If anyone is interested in chatting, visit http://www.mommychats.com and enter the "Cloth_Diapering_World" forum for general sewing chats. I was there a while ago chatting about bra-making.
post #12 of 12
Thread Starter 
Wow! I'm suprised there are so many out there who sew their own undies! I had a lot of FOE left over from a diaper making project & was looking @ my undies for ideas on how to make some. Then I thought, underwear isn't all that expensive & it is so much easier. But I'm glad to know I'm not crazy for considering it.

Can't wait to start sewing a bra that fits though! Thanks for your help, sewmom!
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