Hi! You may have seen that I’ve recently sewn two versions of View A of the Black Beauty Bra (by Emerald Erin) which were made using duoplex fabric and intended as ‘everyday’ wear bras. (You can see that post HERE). It was no exaggeration to say the experience revolutionised the way I feel about sewing my own lingerie – it took the fear out of the process and resulted in two really wearable – and comfortably supportive – bras! The confidence I gained made me look at View B of the pattern – the lace and fully lined version with classic picot elastic finishings.
I bought my original fabrics for View A from Sewing Chest here in the UK but opted to suck up and pay the extra charges and get the finding supplies shipped over from Emerald Erin in Canada. Many UK sewists will attest to the fact that sourcing the seemingly myriad of supplies needed for sewing your own bras locally can prove to be something of a headache! However, I was subsequently contacted by www.sewingchest.co.uk who kindly offered to send me a prototype kit* to test which they thought would work well for View B.
The kit, containing this lovely ‘Rosanne’ lace, contains absolutely everything that is needed (apart from the wires which are available separately) and includes rigid scalloped lace for the upper cup with matching tulle for the cradle and lower cups, Simplex lining fabric for the whole and cream powernet for the back bands – together with the different elastics you need, fab contrasting pink wire casings and the hook and eye fastenings. It also contains a choice of both cream and pink metal sliders and rings for the straps and a sweet little bow! I found the quality of everything to be really good.
As you can see I opted for the contrast of the pink sliders and rings which I think looks really pretty, giving a lovely pop of colour to the back!
I’m so happy to report that the kit was absolutely perfect with plenty of everything that you need! I do believe www.sewingchest.co.uk are also planning to upload some other kits too – and at just £16 for the entire kit, I think they’re really good value! (see HERE and the kit for the largest size range click HERE), I know I will be purchasing from the new ones that get listed! (If you’re in or closer to Canada, you can also get complete kits from Emerald Erin – (again, with the wires available separately).
So let’s talk sewing! Sewing View B isn’t that different from sewing View A – although there are some changes, both stylistically and in construction.
The major change being that all the pieces (apart from the back band) are lined – the bridge and cradle simply by interlining the pieces (i.e. basting the outer fabric to the lining fabric wrong sides together prior to sewing up). I chose to machine baste these pieces together, however, it would have been more time efficient and less fiddly to have used my spray fabric adhesive to bind the pieces instead!
Although I have some (the Odif 505 stuff), I chose not to use it – I think I was overly worried about the spray adhesive coming through the lace fabric layer and gunking up my needle. This was definitely a mental block / overthinking on my part though – it says right there on the front of the can that it doesn’t gunk needles and it never has when I’ve used it before, so I think I was just being a sucker for punishment! Next time I definitely will just spray away!
When it came lining the cup parts together, I initially thought it was going to be really complex. I always think something is going to be impossibly difficult before I do it for the first time! And it rarely is! *rolls eyes* I really need to get over myself sometimes; because, of course, the same was true here; it’s actually pretty nifty how it all comes together at this point; the pattern instructions are really clear. You then get the satisfaction of the end result looking sufficiently complex whilst knowing it was pretty much a doddle to do, haha!
The other main difference between the two Views is the front straps. View A has double straps made using fold over elastic wrapped around a length of twill tape, which gives a really supportive finish as it stops the front straps stretching out. View B has single picot elastic straps; the result is really comfortable but – being larger chested – overall I prefer the additional support, and the wee bit extra lift, of the reinforced double straps.
I also lengthened the back straps on this version, as in my other two iterations I find myself letting them out to their full extent and wishing I had a teeny fraction more to play with – I’m quite long in the torso. Other than that I again sewed straight ‘from the envelope’ and, once again, the fit was spot on (for fit photos, check out my View A blog post).
I’m absolutely in love with the finished bra – once done, I found myself holding it and looking at it quite astounded that I’d made something this pretty and feminine! The kit I was sent has opened my eyes to the joys of using lace / tulle and I can see myself now bringing this fabric into my dressmaking generally.
Having worn this bra now for a couple of days straight, I noticed that it felt even more comfortable at the cradle/front band than my previous versions. Inspecting closely, and comparing to my View A bras, the cradle is actually slightly longer – i.e. there is more band support underneath the cups. (I’ve looked at the pattern pieces and they do differ slightly to account for the different elastics used and for the lining construction.)
What do you think? I particularly love the look of this bra and the band is better. But I prefer the front straps of View A, so I’m going to have a think about how I’m going to amalgamate the best of both Views for my next iteration. And, of course, I’m now thinking I really should make some matching knickers (do you have any recommendations for a good high-leg, high-waisted panelled pattern?)
(If you would like to see the fit of the bra and more general pattern information, do check out my first review of it HERE).
Up next I’ve got a Jacket review …. and I find myself reaching for two new-to-me patterns to sew – a pair of casual trousers and a bell-sleeved jersey top…
Until next time, wishing you happy sewing!
For more regular sewing chat, why not join me over on Instagram HERE.
*Disclaimer : I was given the fabrics and supplies for this bra by www.sewingchest.co.uk in exchange for testing it with no obligation to post or review publicly. All opinions expressed are my honest and considered opinion. Post not sponsored or Affiliated to Emerald Erin in any way. Some of the links given may be Affiliate links – if you choose to purchase via an Affiliate link, you will not be charged any extra however I may receive a small commission x).