One of the best things about sewing your own lingerie is the ability to make it entirely custom-fit – no more worries about bra straps digging in or sliding off your shoulders! Comfortable bra straps use firm strap elastic, rings, and adjusters. The adjusters are a practical component, allowing you to adjust the length of the strap to the perfect setting, which will help as the elastic naturally stretches out over time. But they’re also a great way to add extra design interest into your bra – we love using gold to add a touch of luxe!
Assembling a bra strap can seem a bit fiddly the first time round, so here’s our fuss-free method which will get you sewing in no time.
How to assemble a bra strap
You will need:
Strap elastic, two adjusters, two rings (or more, depending on the style you’re after) thread, snips and pins
1. Measure the length
Measure the length from your full bust point up to the top of your shoulder. Double this measurement. This will be the length of your strap. It will include some negative ease, to allow the strap to cling to your body.
The finished straps can vary slightly according to which pattern you use. Here, we’ve sewn our Chelsea Bra sewing pattern. This underwired bra has straps sewn in two sections, which is similar to many ready-to-wear underwired bras. It’s a fun way of making a real feature of your bra findings, such as these gold rings and sliders.
2. Sew to the adjuster
Thread one end of the elastic through the middle bar of the adjuster. Stitch it down securely using a narrow zigzag, as close as you can get to the adjuster without hitting it with the needle. Trim away any excess seam allowance.
3. Thread through ring and slider
Thread the raw edge through a ring, then back through the prongs of the adjuster. Double-check to make buy ultram sure that the right side is facing up.
4. Sew to bra
Attach the strap to your bra by sewing it flat onto the back band of your bra. A three-step zigzag stitch is recommended. Here we have used two rows of narrow zigzag stitch instead, which is a suitable replacement for older sewing machines that don’t have a three-step zigzag setting.
Bonus! 3 different ways to change up your bra straps
Using just one bra pattern, you can create endless variations to spice up your lingerie drawer! Here are three suggestions for using the straps to change the design of your set…
1. Play with colour
Use contrasting coloured elastics and hardware to the rest of the bra to immediately create a chic statement with minimal effort.
2. Trim the shoulders
After assembling the bra, try it on and mark a section approximately 5cm (2”) across the top of the shoulder. Add small pieces of lace to this section, attaching it securely to the wrong side of the elastic using a small zig-zag stitch. You have the option of sewing the lace on flat, or creating a frilled ruffle.
3. Add a double strap
Make the adjustable strap that is 1/2 your cup to shoulder measurement, which allows the ring to sit up on the top of your shoulder. (On our Chelsea bra, this means cutting a slightly longer back bra strap.) Cut a second piece of elastic, thread it through the shoulder ring, and attach it to the top of the bra cups as an inverted V.
We hope this tutorial has inspired you to get creative with your next bra project!
What’s your favourite way to change up your lingerie sewing? Do share in the comments!