Bra Making…custom-fit!

As I said, although a bit later than promised, I’m back with some progress on my customized bra fit.

I thought I’d provide a proper review with my last post, I thought I’d include it here so that you can see the actual breakdown of adjustments.

Pattern Review: Bravo Bella Bra 2

Description: A full band, 4-piece cup seam designed for maximum support and a round shape, from website.

Sizing: Multi-sized master pattern includes sizes 32D-I, 34D-I, 36D-I, 38D-I, 40D-I, 42D-I, 44D-I, 46D-I, 48D-I.

I learned how to think about bra sizing while attending a seminar by Monica O’Rourke…my size in this pattern is a 32D. My RTW size is 34B. Who knew!!

Were the instructions easy to follow?

Yes and no…I used my own experience along with her DVD and the pattern instruction just to keep on track. I will add that I have taken Beverly Johnson’s Craftsy classes and have learned quite a bit. I highly recommend all of the :).


It actually feels like it truly fits. It does not give me weird, pointy or squished boobs. The support is amazing. I can jump up and down and don’t feel as if the girls are going to rip from my chest.  Another little nugget of goodness is that it doesn’t take any rings or sliders, so if you don’t want to source the little fiddly bits you don’t have to.  The strap attachment on the side cup is to short to allow for a nice match with the strap. But this is an easy fix with a little redrafting…which I love to do. 🤓

Fabric Used:  Nylon tricot and firm power net. All items were included in a kit purchased from Bravo Bella.  The underwires were also purchased from BB, they are Flexlite and are so much more comfortable than the very rigid punched steel that are widely available.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:

Bra #1, none.  I had a bit of boob-bulge on the left neckline, back fat and the band was way too tight.

Bra #2: 

Band: placed pattern with DOGS horizontal, added 1/2″ at 1″ from side seam. It should be noted that the pattern designer has you place the back band diagonally so that the DOGs provide much stronger support, however with small breasts it is not necessary.

Upper Cup: raised CF 1/4″

Side Cup/Strap Attachment: lowered 1 1/2″ and re-drafted the neckline and armhole curve blending to CF and SS.

I still felt like the band was too tight along the upper edge from the side seam around my back to where my shoulder-blade ends; back fat bulging. Just not attractive 😩.

Bra #3:

I kept the above and added another 1/2″ to the back band, it is still too snug for my taste. For comfort and movement I added elastic strap extenders.  The front strap attachment is re-drafted so that when the elastic is turned back and sewn to the strap it is the same width and looks prettier.😃

This one turned out the best so far.  I found that when I wore my bra for a day, the apex of the cup didn’t quite align with my breast apex (nipple). Everything that I’ve read says that they are to align, which is supposed to minimize show through when wearing closer fitting garments.  It’s funny how we can be happy with a make, but find imperfections with each.  My next bra will be tweaked slightly. I guess it’s considered fine tuning. And why not?

Notes for Bra #4:

Raise the depth of the band at the SS by 1/2″ and re-draft the armhole to cover more breast tissue in the upper cup. Still thinking about this one.

Re-draft the upper cup for a smooth finished edge without elastic.

Remove the strap extension from the upper cup and create a strap attachment point so that I can use a different type of decorative strap.

Create a partial band bra….once ALL fit changes are set in stone.

Try a lace application, all over or just the upper cup.  The sky is the limit!

Thanks for reading. What kind of bra making experience do you have? Few or many fitting adjustments? Do tell in the comments.




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