bra cup question

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Thank you for the advice here, i wish i had some to offer but for now it's
just questions. :-)

I am using various scraps of fabric i have and making swimsuit tops for the
warm weather (not necessarily to swim in).
The pattern is the simple traditional "triangle" top with ties at the neck and
back.  What can i sew into the cups to make them a bit "padded"?  I find
pre-molded cups at the stores but i want to find out if there's something i
can make that would cost me less.  

Any ideas appreciated!  Thanks.

Re: bra cup question
Dear ml,

Bra cups are molded, so I don't know how successful your results would
be with making home-made ones.  But, what about using an old padded
bra?  The cups can be cut to shape for your triangle top.


Re: bra cup question
In the old days, bra makers quilted their top fabric to a thin layer of
fiberfill and a nylon lining.  You can also stitch concentric half
circles under the point to give it some, but not a lot of, uplift.

Miz Spike

Re: bra cup question
_mL_ wrote:
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Old shoulder pads removed from RTW by those of us with linebacker


--Karen D.
who has bags and bags of these; use 'em to stuff pillows

Re: bra cup question

Veloise wrote:
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Joan coming out of the lurk mode (but I do read this group daily) to
say a big AMEN to the statement of  "us with linebacker shoulders."

Re: bra cup question
thanks for the suggestions.
this is a very helpful group!

Re: bra cup question
I'm a big proponent of reuse.  How about cutting out the bra cups from
thrift-store swimsuits?  Around here the suits go for pretty cheap,
though I don't know what the retail price is for new cups.  On the
other end of the scale, I once investigated purchasing the flat
foam-fabric that makes bras for swim suits.  It comes really wide, like
60", but costs $15-25 per yard :-(  If you were going to be making
padded triangle tops for years to come, it might be worth it to invest
in 1/8 of a yard.  That would probably last forever!


Re: bra cup question
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Great idea, hadn't thought of that!  We have a lot of thrift stores in my

I've purchased skirts and dresses from thrift stores so that i could have the
fabric to make something else.  Sometimes even purchasing an old blouse just
for the buttons is cheaper than buying the buttons new.  Also made some skirts
out of too-short used jeans.  I love the idea of re-styling used clothing and
making something completely new out of it, as long as the fabric is still in
good condition.

Re: bra cup question
Me too.  I'm in the process of preparing to sew my own fashion bras
since my size is hard to find.  (My favorite bra is out getting a
pattern made from it.)  I've been buying beautiful colored bras with
wide 3-hook backs at Ross, TJ Maxx and Marshalls (can't find any at
thrift stores) and taking them apart for all the neat bits.  Colored
back closures, straps with colored sliders, colored underwire
channeling, and matching plush elastics and laces.  And I've also
bought a few cami-boyshort sets off the clearance racks.  I'll cut up
the camis to make the bras and then will have complete sets with the
boyshorts.  I'm positively champing to get sewing!!!

How did you come to make your own swimsuits?  I can get good results
with the sewing part but never do well with the fitting...


Re: bra cup question
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That's great!  I don't think i'd have the patience to make bras, they seem so
intricate.  I have experimented with making panties and tap pants though.
I'd be interested in following up on how this works out for you.

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I haven't tried making the bottoms in a long time, used to make bikinis when i
was a teenager (and had more patience and better eyesight!) :-)
  Now that i'm older i want more coverage on the rear so i'll be experimenting
with those.  The tops are easy for me to fit, i'm not very big in that
department. :-)  I'd like to make some to give away, too.   The triangle ones
don't need much fitting becuz they adjust so much.  Probably wouldn't be too
suitable for larger sizes though.   I thought they might look pretty to make
to match shorts or skirts for summertime, there's always enough pieces left
over after i cut those out.  I've seen some really cool fabrics in bright
playful prints (i'm from the hippie era and still love that stuff).  Too
bright for me to wear for a top or skirt, but maybe for a swim top, halter,
scarf, bag, or ??? Ever see some fabric you just LOVE but really couldn't wear
anything made out of it?  :-)

Re: bra cup question
During the hippie days, my sister and I made that Simplicity halter top
pattern.  In California, companies by the beach made bikini tops to
order, but I thought they would only be for the smaller ladies, and not
suitable for larger endowed women.  I always wanted to get one and wear
it.  As I am from the midwest, I am not inclined to exercise myself to
death for that purpose unfortunately.  One winter, I wore hot pants.  I
think I had knitted them.  boy was I cold.  They used to sell this
polyester knit fabric for home sewers with art nouveau themes, and it
was fun to sew, even the polyester suit knits were fun and forgiving
due to the stretch.  I will be nostalgic for the 1970's for a while.  I
strung my own beads, tried macrame, knit, crocheted and the like.  Now,
it is all about embroidery and sewing clothes, warm enough for the
midwest winters.  that means sewing with that amazing fleece.  I have
lots of tips on sewing but not for sewing bras or bathing suits.
However, my sister can actually make these and taught a course in it.

Re: bra cup question
Whoops, I think I responded to your post in my head, but not in
reality!  ;-)

Thanks for being interested in my bra-making adventure.  It's something
I've wanted to do all my life.  (I'm turning 40 today...)  I just
posted another message that I went ahead and made a bra pattern from
another bra, while waiting for the one to be returned from the pattern
cloner.  I'll start cutting tonight and see what happens!  I've never
had good luck sewing my own panties, despite having tried several

Re: adorable fabrics.
When I was in high school I fell in love with a royal blue/purple check
silk dupioni.  I bought it and made a tea length prom dress with a
strapless basque bodice.  Used black velvet for the bodice and the
dupioni for the skirt.  It was absolutely darling but the person I
asked to the prom was already going with someone else!  Lol.  I think I
reused that fabric too, tee hee.

You're nice to make bikini tops to give away.  


Re: bra cup question

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i hope you had a chance to wear that dress SOMEwhere... :-)

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Thanks.  i think it's just that a person only needs so many bikini tops!

Speaking of bras, my husband always cracks me up when the ads in the Sunday
paper have bra sales.  He'll make remarks about the "buy one get one free"
that "don't you need two anyway?" or "half off all bras" and he's like gotta
SEE that, those women running around with their bras half off.... LOL  Or "buy
two, get one free", that one's really puzzling.... "three?  who has three?"  

Re: bra cup question
A witty guy I know wrote a song about those ads, and called it, "My
Macy's Girl."  Apparently those photos were the highlight of his day.
I guess being an engineering grad student wasn't all that exciting.

BTW, just finished cutting out the fashion fabric for my first
home-sewn bra!  But I discovered while shopping on line for hardware
that the wires are unusual.  It's a British brand, so I had to order
from the UK to get exactly the right wires.  Costly shipping, bleah.


Re: bra cup question
I love this idea of cutting apart thrift store stuff for the parts,
kind of like getting a car for parts.  I thought of doing it, but that
it would be a lot of work.  I guess a skirt would be a top jeans that
fit, opening the inside legs and adding a gosset of denim.  People make
stadium blankets with patches of used denim.  those things must be
heavy to carry around.  I imagine would be a printed flannel plaid
backing.  It would be a rag quilt with flannel in the middle for the
batting.  I would like to know how to restyle old clothes to make
something that would actually fit.  Maybe someday, I will come across
something useful at a garage sale.

Re: bra cup question

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One of the styles I've been seeing is a skirt with a yoke made out of
the top part of a pair of jeans (the bottom of the zipper) and then
tiers of gauze.

Jenn Ridley :

Re: bra cup question
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I've seen some totebags made from old jeans.  They're kind of cute!

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