Friday, May 12, 2017

longline euler bralette

I'm still very new to the world of bra-making, but I want to learn as much as I can. I honestly never thought I would be that interested in making bras, and then I made my first (and second) at sewing camp last October, and I was amazed by how quick and FUN I found it compared to other clothing. I've now made three Harriet bras, but I hadn't ever made (or even worn!) a soft braie. one without underwireswith the exception some sports bras that look too intense for everyday wear. I don't really mind my underwire bras that much, but when I'm at home all day sewing, doing things around the house, or walking Tumbles, I would love something with a little support and coverage without going full underwire bra.

I've seen the Watson bra on instagram and sewing blogs time and time again, and I trust that it's a great soft bra pattern given my experience with its underwire sister, the Harriet. However, the full coverage, vertical cups just never appealed to me aesthetically speaking so I held out. And then I saw the Euler bralette! I love the clean style and the curved lines on the cups, and the elastic band simplifies the construction compared to my previous me-made bras or even the Watson. I bought the pattern right before getting caught up in finishing my classes and moving. Before I got around to sourcing all of the materials, the creator also started selling kits, and this was the push I needed to get started.

Materials & Instructions

I bought the gray Euler kit at a local fabric store, but you can get them online here, too. I found the pattern and the kit to be straightforward with a few exceptions. There are a couple of places in the instructions where a suggestion is made after it's too late to change something (eg. cut out all pattern pieces, then many many steps later it suggests an alternative which requires you to add seam allowance before cutting). I'd suggest reading more thoroughly than I did before starting and/or cutting out pieces just before you use them.

The kit was an easy way to jump into this pattern, but unfortunately I was about 4" too short on foldover elastic to make the long line bra. Since I'd already cut the lower band piece and planned to use both included hooks + eyes, I decided to go to a local fabric store to get more elastic to finish that part, and it turned out fine. It was frustrating that the kit didn't have quite enough materials to finish the bra, though! Otherwise the kit was alright, although I don't love the use of foldover elastic as straps. It is very elastic and doesn't provide much support, even when tightened almost all the way. The lining fabric is also stretchier than I prefer. I fixed both of these things in my second attempt, using supplies I already had at home. I really do love bra kits as a jumping off point for a new pattern, and then it's a lot easier to make informed changes on the second try.


I sewed up view two (with two bands) with view one straps (straight, not crossed). The whole thing came together in about a day, with some distractions and a dinner out with friends breaking it up. This pattern will get you very familiar with the three-step zigzag stitch and with ripping basting stitches out of your elastic, but I found it kind of cathartic. (I'm telling you, I really enjoy making bras for some reason!)

Sizing & Fit

I made a size medium, after a lot of back and forth about which size to make. I have a 29" underbust and 34" bust, and I think my correct bra size is around a 30DD, but this is pretty dependent on the bra. My measurements put me at a small, but I worried the small cups would be far too little, and I didn't want to overthink it for my first attempt. As predicted, the band is definitely too loose, and the bralet is not nearly as supportive as I would like. I took about an inch off of each band before these photos. I could modify it more, but this is much more of a pain with the lower band already finished and sewn on. Instead I'm hoping to send it to my mom if it's close enough to her measurements. The sizing is pretty forgiving, but I prefer to err on being too snug, especially in a pattern like this that won't be uncomfortable.

Photo Overload

omg - I now have a dress form, rooms with natural light, and a clean white table to photograph on. It's AMAZING. I'm still taking photos on my phone, but baby steps, ok?

Meet my new dress form! This bralet fits her a little better than it fits me - her ribcage is just a bit wider than mine so the bands are snugger, and her paper mache boobs are extremely perky.

Some more details + inside:

Those three ^ show the insides. The pattern instructs you on enclosing all raw edges, and it's a nice, clean finish. I did have to pick out and resew a few spots when I cut my seam allowances too close to the basting stitches and the lining started to pull free after the zigzag step, but in the end it turned out okay.

The elastic in the bottom third of this pic is the one I had to buy locally to supplement the kit. The match is pretty spot on, fortunately. (It's actually the same width as the elastic at the top, but the upper elastic isn't folded over the edge and this one is.) If I'd known earlier I was going to run out of elastic, I could have cut the bottom band with seam allowance and enclosed some elastic from my stash in the seam. The pattern mentions this, just too late for me to make that change without cutting a whole new bottom band.

Double bands. There's a little pleat in the lower one because i took some length off of the band and the new end was too wide for the hook and eye. I don't think it's a huge issue, but in the future I would determine the right band length before cutting that piece in order to get the alignment right.

And finally, a few pictures on me! I've always been weirdly afraid of putting pictures of myself in lingerie on the internet. But honestly this is more modest than many (most?) swimsuits I've worn, and I really do feel a lot less nervous about this sort of thing since quitting my job in an industry that's frequently shitty to women. I always really appreciate seeing how things fit on women other than the patternmakers' models, so hopefully this is useful to someone who's thinking about making this!

lol I didn't realize how uneven my strap adjustments were until looking at this picture :|

So much ease!! I could seriously take a few inches out from the bottom band, but since it's at an angle and the edges are already finished, it would be easier to just redo that whole band. meh.

So! That's my first Euler bra. I'm a little on the fence about how I feel about it - I still love the look, but it's just not really doing it for me in terms of support. I actually don't dislike it in these photos, but I want a little more of a "hug" from the bands and straps. I'll share my second one soon (spoiler: it fits much better!), and I'm getting started on my first Watson soon too, so I'll have a better comparison point then. Stay tuned!

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