“ANOTHER lingerie set??” I hear you exclaim!! Well, when you’re onto a good thing, why not make more??
I’ve been trying to reduce my single-use plastic consumption over the last year, buying in bulk and seeking out plastic-free options wherever possible (Lush is wonderful for this!), and generally trying to lessen my impact on the planet. But one area where I am just not ready to give up the convenience of single use plastics is my period products.
If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it! Yes, this is a very similar set to the dotty one I shared on Friday, but I liked that one so much I wanted more in my lingerie drawer.
Earlier, I’d made the plain View 1 of the Sophie Hines Axis Tank pattern but this time around I wanted to make View 2 which has the seamed sides and back. I’ve seen loads of great examples of this pattern using different fabrics and it was the real reason I bought it!
I seem to go in waves with lingerie sewing – I won’t sew anything for months on end, and then BAM! the feeling takes me and I sew a bunch all at once. Well, the feeling has definitely taken hold!
I’ve actually been trialling a bunch of soft bra patterns on and off over lockdown (which I might delve into at some point) but I’ve finally found one that I really like – the Sophie Hines Axis Tank pattern. This is a cropped, racerback top for stretch fabrics in two neckline heights that ends a few inches below the underbust. It has no illusions about offering any support, but I wanted a lightweight lounge bra since I’m mostly sat around at home all day anyway and don’t really need support unless I’m exercising (at which point I wear a sports bra anyway)
I’ve been running almost exclusively in my own-sewn sports bras for years now. Specifically, some Jalie “sports bras” I’ve hacked to be supportive enough for running but I couldn’t really recommend to others as the instructions were just for a crop top without much support. And I get asked about sports bra patterns all the time!
I don’t really fancy developing my own sports bra pattern, to be perfectly honest, so I’ve been on the lookout for a good one to recommend to people for just as many years. Now and then I hear from someone that they found so-and-so’s supportive enough, but then I’ll hear from someone else that they had to pinch inches out of the same pattern! I don’t have time to be trying out every supposedly “sports bra” pattern out there, but I’ve tried a few, and had rather enough fails along the way (I’m looking at you, horrific Simplicity monstrosity!) to be more than a little wary.
But Jalie are a brand I really rate and admire, so when they released their new Coco sports bra pattern recently, and one actually advertised as a sports bra, I pretty much hit the Buy button immediately so I could test it out for you all.
I hate writing bad reviews. It’s even worse when it’s in my “specialist subject”, as there’s a subset of people that will think it’s just sour grapes or something. But I really, really wanted to like this pattern. I get asked all the time for recommendations for a good sports bra pattern, and Simplicity 8339 looked good on paper – lined, supportive straps, wide under-bust band, and a variety of cup sizes.
A good friend of mine travelled to Tokyo in January, and asked if I wanted anything. “Oh, some nice traditional kimono print fabric would be nice if you see any”, I said. Well, he ended up going to Nippori Fabric Town one day and fell hard for Tomato (I might also add here that he owns a vintage Bernina sewing machine!). I ended up with a massive stack of cotton prints as well as some lovely wool tweed, too.
I’ve been meaning to sew up two of the more traditional prints in particular ever since I received them, and I thought they would coordinate really well together in a project as they’re the same colours but different prints:
Pop quiz – What’s better than an entire Saturday set aside for sewing?
Give up? It’s an entire Saturday set aside for sewing with a friend! Yes, a few weeks ago my friend Sanchia (whom you may recall as my Threshold Shorts pattern athlete model) was all “we need to set a sewing date and make some leggings!” so we found a Saturday we both had free, and she came round to the boat last weekend! Sanchia has sewn before, but hasn’t made leggings in a while, so she selected some fabric out of my (frankly, overflowing with fabulousness) lycra stash, and we used my Steeplechase Leggings pattern to sew her up a pair without any inner leg seaming.
And since we were going to be sewing all afternoon, well, I might as well make a pair for myself, too! Since Sanchia chose my FunkiFabrics “Prism” lycra (I had the Flexcite base but it’s also available on their wicking Titan base fabric, I wanted to choose something dark so we wouldn’t need to change threads, so I used some fabulous cityscape lycra that had literally just arrived from Sewing Chest the day before (they have got some great sales on their sportswear fabric pieces right now, just sayin’!).
We had a good chat cutting out the fabric, and then pinning each step together and constructing them assembly-line style, plus a break for lunch, and then she got to play on my coverstitch machine for the hems and waistband finishing, too. By the time 4pm rolled around, we had two finished pairs of leggings!
We vowed to wear our new leggings to Run dem Crew on Tuesday, where we got another friend to snap some photos of us!
It’s that time again! I can barely keep up with all your amazing, inspiring, and beautiful versions of my patterns these days, and before I know it, I’ve got an overflowing heap to share with you! I know how helpful many of you find these – it’s all well and good that I make nice versions of my patterns, but so much more helpful when you see how good they look on other bodies, too!
Be sure to click through to read the details and see more photos on each of these entries, too. With a long weekend coming up both here in the UK and in the US, there’s no excuse not to whip up something sporty!
Winnie’s Steeplechase Leggings with exterior rolled seams & zebra Surf to Summit
Karen’s 5(!) Steeplechase Capris for herself and her daughters
Maria’s three pairs of Steeplechase Capris, with great reflective accents
Sally’s wintry Surf to Summit for the ski slopes!
Maria’s “Hunger Games” inspired Duathlon leggings
mixtilli’s red Lacey Thong lingerie set
I’m not sure sure what happened, but I caught the lingerie-sewing urge hard a few weeks ago and finally cut into some gorgeous pale green lace I’ve been hording for years. It’s been so long that I’m not even entirely sure which online-lingerie-fabric-shop-which-has-since-closed-down I bought it from – eLingeria? Danglez? In any case, it was worth holding on to, and worth buying a pale pink bra findings kit off etsy a year or two ago, and then finally purchasing some pale pink “silk touch” lycra from Tia Knight about 6 months ago to finish off my supplies!
Frankly, I’ve been meaning to sew more Orange Lingerie Marlborough bras ever since I’ve made my other two. The original pale yellow one I wear several times a week, every week, and I love it. The wings on the pale blue one have stretched out a bit, and I really need to unpick the back hooks and shift them smaller to make the band more stable so I’ll wear that one more, too. But that I have two highly wearable bras that I love has meant that I doubt I’ll ever sew another underwired bra pattern again (unless Norma releases another, I suppose!).
The construction on this bra is the same as the other two – my only changes were stylistic, namely to not overlay the lace onto the frame, and to not line that piece, either. I fused lightweight interfacing onto the lower cup, centre front, and frame pieces, then basted the lace overlay on top, and used another pale pink piece as lining as I constructed. I also stabilised the scallop edge of the upper cup with clear elastic, because I didn’t have any beige narrow elastic, which I vastly prefer to the horrible clear stuff!
After I finished the bra, I kept the momentum going and made two pairs of panties to match – one using my (still free!) Lacey Thong pattern, which I could make in my sleep these days, but that I love and just plain works for me.