It turns out that, although intimidating, bras are actually fairly easy. It took me a long time to work my way up to actually making one though.
First I bought the pattern and a couple of kits. Then I let those sit for a couple months while I caught up on other projects. Finally at Thankgiving I bought the Craftsy class on bra making. I am really glad I bought the class (and even happier I waited for it to be on sale). Following along with the class made it really easy to figure out otherwise difficult steps.
And ta-da! My first bra:
I should probably have put it against a dark background so the picture popped a little more. Oh well. The fit on my very first attempt was good enough to wear, but not perfect. Fortunately the Crafsty class goes through how to fix fit issues, although this one I could have figured out on my own.
This biggest issue was that I had extra fabric in the power bar, so I just cut the pattern and overlapped it about 1/4" and that solved that problem. The band also felt a little snug so I lengthened it 1/2" my new one feels just a little loose so I think on my third I will only lengthen the back by 1/4"
I think that might be the most intimidating issue of bra making, that something as little as 1/8" or 1/4" inch can totally change the fit.
Here is my second bra:
I am so in love with the colors on this one!
So, in addition to the changes for fit I also got bolder with the lace. On the first bra I put the lace exactly where the pattern said to put lace. (By the way it's the Shelly bra pattern by Pin-up Girls in case I haven't mentioned that yet). For the second bra I sewed the cups and basically draped lace on them to figure out how I wanted to arrange it. I'm pretty happy with the result and it allowed me to use the cute neckline trim that came with my kit. I didn't use the neckline trim on the first bra because it had lace on the neckline edge of the cups, but I was just so enjoying that fuchsia I had to use it on the second bra.
It isn't quite the "butterfly lace" pattern that Beveryly Johnson recommends in the Craftsy class but I think it came out really pretty.
One word of caution: Check the heat on your iron before pressing. I sew almost entirely with natural fibers so I tend to crank the heat pretty high on my iron. Bra fabrics are mostly nylon and polyester though. I thought I had turned the heat down low enough on my iron but clearly I didn't because I managed to melt the power net for my back band. Oops!
Fortunately the kits from Bra Maker's Supply and really generous with the fabrics. I think I have enough fabric for two more bras, I just need mor underwire and elastics. So I was able to cut out a new back band piece and away I went but it was still a pout worthy moment.
All's well that ends well though and I have two pretty me-made bras! I am so happy with this newly acquired skill. I cannot wait to make more!