jungle bikini

A bathing suit! This one took 3 attempts but i wore it all summer, so  – totally worth it.


The fabric is a very light jungle print stretch (not lycra) that I bought from Rathdowne fabrics thinking i would make a dress for my animal-mad eldest daughter about 6 years ago.  The bra has a foam cups and wires and I have stiffened the wings using builders’ ties as boning inside a bra channel.


The gold clasp for the back came from Booby traps . 

I used Orange Lingerie’s Boylston Bra pattern. I deleted the straps and modified the back strap to take the clasp, shortening it considerably. The final size is a 34C with my first attempt a 34D too large.


Bikini bottoms are a CLOTH HABIT Watson brief, size SMALL


portside travel doppkit

I bought this pattern some time ago from GRAINLINE STUDIO after seeing it on Caroline’s awesome blog:


the fabric was given to me by my mother and i have metres of it….it’s very hard to know what to do with it…… so i made 3 x these sponge bags out of it for christmas gifts….


some with a black zipper and some with red. The lining is a water resistant material from Spotlight and the bumble bee toggle a christmas decoration from ‘Typo’.


red version…..


It has a deep main body and a nifty side pocket that is almost invisible if you don’t have a decent size zip pull attached.

I also made one in a ‘minion’ fabric from spotlight for my 9 year old nephew:



and a more refined version for my youngest daughter:


again with the ‘typo’ christmas decoration as a zip pull.


…and one more i forgot to photograph…….with a giant fluffy pompom as the zip pull. They were easy to put together and a great success 🙂

midnight blue Esplanade

I purchased the ‘Espalanade pattern from Orange Lingerie and made it up in the a navy Satin from my stash.


It required plastic boning and the purchase of hook and eye tape which I got from Lincraft. I had read somewhere that plastic builder’s ties can be a useful substitute for plastic boning and when I fell short, that is exactly what I used for the last short length required under one of the sups. It works just fine!


I used foam lining and stitched using invisible thread on the upper reel which I have found prevents skipped stitches. Regular thread in the spool.


It fits perfectly and is very comfortable and supportive. I think I would make it again in a fabric with some stretch as I found the rigid silk very unforgiving.




Esplanade from Orange Lingerie in a size 34D

**I will try making in a 34C next time as this size fitted me better in the boyston bra pattern which i used for a strapless bathing suit top.**

Summer blue Malborough set

The Malborough by Orange Lingerie is my go-to bra:


This pretty set is a perfect fit in a 34D. So delicate and summery. beige power mesh for the band and gold hardware. A perfect match. I am so happy with this set and have finally got the sizing right 🙂


The gorgeous lace is from Booby Traps and the integral blue ribbon detail along the scallop edge inspired the pairing with the blue bra straps (also from Booby traps) and pale blue 20% dernier tricot lining. (from GJ Discount Fabrics and their new online store)

Mesh fabric was a scrap find from Rathdowne Fabrics though  have since seen it at Booby Traps also. Matching 15mm elastic for under arms and band was from Lincraft.


Undies to match in both thong and brief versions. In both I have used the same elastic as the bra set. In the thong, it is important to tack the ends of the leg elastics back firmly to the seam that joins the lace to the main fabric, perpendicular to the run of the elastic. always leave enough elastic extending beyond the lace to achieve this and trim later.


I used an adhesive quilting spray to bond the lining to the mesh whilst I was sewing and cutting. This washes out and is only temporary, but invaluable to stop these slippery fabrics moving around whilst you are working with them!


Bra pattern: Marlborough pattern by Orange Lingerie. Size 34D

Thong: Gia thong by Ohhh Lulu, size medium with seam allowances added. for standard elastic. (rather than the FOE in the pattern)

The briefs are Merckwaerdigh E-Mix30 C made in a size medium.

black mesh fenway

This is my first crack at the Fenway by Orange Lingerie.


I made it for me in a straight 36D. Only just now, writing this, I have realised that I made the wrong size for me which explains why it didn’t fit…… my size has dropped drastically in the last year from a 36E which it has been for many years to a 34D. I still can’t get used to it.


It was fiddly with the delicate sheers and I really don’t know if I love fold over elastic as much as everybody else out there does. I followed the instructions very carefully and avoided stretching the elastic. However the finished bra really gaped under the arms. Given the delicacy of the fabric, my only option was to cut off the elastic in this location and try again. So my first Fenway bra is 1/4 inch reduced in coverage on the sides and under the arms. But it looks much better now. I stretched the FOE along the top of the backband (I never normally do this over powernet), the side band and half way up the upper cup outer edge.


The lining is my usual 20% Dernier tricot in black from GJs and the black mesh from Booby Traps. I purchased the size tags from Booby traps also. With all the different sizes I am making for myself and the girls, it is helping us keep track of whose is whose…..however, in my error have put the wrong label on this bra. This should be a 14D.


Luckily it fits my No.1 daughter perfectly and looks SO gorgeous on. It’s so delicate and very sexy.  I’ve promised her some matching briefs to complete the set. The girls are doing very well out of all my bra trials. I’m yet to have a bra for myself…..

My sizing mistake also explains why the band is too large for both of us. Luckily it is ok on the tightest hook for her.


All elastics and hardware from Booby Traps. Such a pretty pattern.

Pattern: FENWAY by Orange Lingerie made in a size 36D




black mesh malborough

This gorgeous bra was sadly a bit of a bit of a fail……


I made this set or daughter No. 1 who had requested that I make the back strap , frame and band a bit narrower to take a 2xhook rather than the 3xhook that is suitable for this size.


The green edged pattern pieces are cut back to try to achieve this and are shown sitting on top of the original pattern pieces. Somehow this change made the whole bra too small and the band too tight, even though it seems to be the same length. Predictably, there is not enough coverage at the side of the cups.


Its possibly my most beautifully made bra, as I’m finally perfecting all the techniques. Here I have temporarily adhered the lining which is a 20% dernier tricot form Gjs with a basting spray which i bought from Oz Quilts. Feature fabric is a black mesh from Booby Traps. This stops the two fabrics sliding on each other. I found it almost impossible to sew this slippery lining in place previously.


Another result of my pattern hacking was that the bra wires I had were too long. I chopped them in my husband’s workshop and re-covered the sharp tips with some heat shrinking rubber tubing (also found in his workshop) which was a tip from Amy from Cloth Habit   This worked brilliantly!

IMG_5732This was a really fiddly bra with many unexpected mistakes; including sewing the lower cups to the upper cups upside down….. there seems to be a notch marking missing from the pattern. It’s marked on the upper cup, but not on the lower cup, hence the possibility for the error…… Has anyone else noticed this? With this fragile fabric, I had to start over again.

IMG_5731With all these mistakes, the bra must have taken twice as long to make as it normally would have, so to have it not fit after all that was frustrating.  Luckily it fits daughter no.2 , though the upper cups are a little large…. hopefully she will grow into them.

On to making another bra for daughter No.1…..no pattern hacking this time.


Bra: Orange Lingerie Malborough in a hacked size 34D

Thong: Gia thong by Ohhh Lulu, size medium with seam allowances added. for standard elastic. (rather than the FOE in the pattern)


blonde & black malborough

So this is a size -test bra for my daughter number 2.


It’s my second experiment with Fold Over Elastic (FOE). I find it very fiddly and must have pulled the elastic too taught along the band and under the cups because its flipping under.


Even so, it’s so pretty on. I hope it will be comfortable and wearable….no complaints yet.


I lined the cups and frame with a 20% dernier tricot from GJs and the first cut into this great colour range that I ordered from them on their new online store:


The blonde mesh is a remnant from the Remnant warehouse.


The pattern is the Malborough from from Orange Lingerie in a size 32C

All hardware from Booby traps as well as this beautiful lace: IMG_5751

I’m starting to build up quite a stash of bra making fabrics. Lucky i like making bras.