Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Alterations: Reduce the band width

I absolutly adore my Tease Mes and Thrill Me:s so much I still keep on buying them even though the smallest band size I can get is still way too big on me. I'm almost preaching about the importance of wearing the correct size but for some reason it is sooo hard to follow my own advice. A too big band makes the bra slide up in the back, makes the bra less supportive and just uncomfortable after a while. So, I decided to make one of my bras just a bit more comfortable.

To do this you need a seam ripper, matching thread and a sewing machine. It is possible to do it by hand, but then you really need a whole lot of knowledge about tecniques in hand sewing and well, it's not as easy as it sounds.

1: Look at what you've got
This is how the back part of my bra looks. I need to take away enough to reduce to width one to two sizes, which means 2-4 inches stretched. However when the fabric isn't stretched but just resting it's enough with just a bit more than an inch on each side. When moving each part of the closure even that small amount the band is too high in the new position so the height needs to be altered too. The easiest way is to move the elastic that leads to the strap. Since I don't mind the straps being a bit closer together and I do such a small alteration I can leave the attatchment for the strap where it is.

2: Remove the closure
Rip the seam apart that holds the closure to the fabric. The seam is just as in the picture and is usually just a narrow zigzag. Take a good look so you can replicate the seaming later on.

3: Remove parts of the elastic
Now the closure is gone and it is time to take parts of the seam on the elatistic leading to the strap away. Don't go all the way unless you plan to move the whole strap. Take your time to look carefully at the seam here too.

4: Pin the elastic back
Pin the elastic back in its new position further down than before. make sure that it makes the height of the band just right for the new closure position. You may need to stretch the elastic just a bit to make it fit well.

5:  Check the position again and start sewing
Check once again that the elastic is in a good position and start stitching it back again. I use a 2.5-3.5 mm wide zigzag with a length of 1.5 mm. The seam should follow the inner edge of the elastic.

6: Cut away the excess fabric
Since the elastic now sits lower than before there will be excess fabric there that you can just cut away. Leave about 2-3 mm just so that the stitches won't come loose, but it should be okay. Also, take away some of the lenght in the band. I took away about 2 cm at each side.

7: Pin the closure back again and sew
Pin the closure back with the fabric of the band sandwiched inside the closure. Start of with the longer seam so it stays where it should be when you do the last two (the upper and lower). I use a 2 mm wide 1 mm long zigzag for this. When you stitch the shorter the needle should go down outside the actual fabric on everyother time it goes down.

Once the pins are gone you're finished with it. This is how my ended up.

It is always good to complete one side at a time. Then you can try the bra on properly before you start on side number two. It is hard to tell at the start what amount you need to take away so better to be safe.

If you need to reduce the band width with more than one or two sizes you will need to move the straps. It is certainly possible and I will at some point show how to do it too, but in that situation you need to alter more than just that. I would therefor not recommend anyone doing that if they don't have a lot of previous experience. When it's about smaller amounts it is really not that hard and you really should be able to do it. :)

In my case I discovered as soon as I but the bra back on that there was a new problem there. The shoulder straps have always been positioned a bit too far apart but since the smaller band means that the cups are being stretched even further under my arms this was just too much to make it wearable. This was my next project which I will tell more about later.

Left: Before. The tightest setting is used and it is still a bit too big.
Right: After. The loosest setting is used and it is just fine on me.

Thursday, 4 August 2011

Regular Clothes from Highstreet that fits

TMost people with a body just the slightest bit outside the regular high street standard has probably been though times in the changing room trying on piece after piece and nothing fits. If the fit is good in one place it is most likely too tight or too baggy somewhere else. However, there are short cuts to find well fitting clothes at the high street. The part of my wardrobe that doesn't include stuff I've made myself is mostly from H&M, Primark and other stores like Cubus, Monki and Lindex. To make the shopping a bit easier I've made som guidelines.

Vest top from H&M, size range from XS to XL,
5.99 £. The ribbed knitting in the tricot gives a
great fit. An XS fits me well in this, even though
 I have about 8 inches too much boobs for it.
 It's cut high enough to cover up most bras,
 but still shows a bit of skin.   
One of the absolutly easiest way to fit as many different bodies as possible, something the highstreet stores really is aiming at, is stretch. Any form of stretch is usually good, but the effect isn't always the same. Ribbed knitting is usually more stretchy than other's but the main thing is to try the stuff on here. Most of the time it's best to ignore your boobs when choosing size, and hope for it to stretch enough to accomondate them anyway. If you size up you'll only end up with a tent anyway.

The same concept applies to pants too, try to chase down jeans that is really stretchy. Then they will shape well around your bum, but still fit well in the waist.

Turqoise hoodes jaccked from for 14.99 för 199 £, size 8 to 16.
I have this one in many colours, all 8:s.  The slight
stretch together with a cut that gives more boob room
and a zipper, which allows you to have it open
across your bust, which together gives a great fit.

Show just the right amount of skin
The fit is always a bit distorted when you wear clothes that really isn't made for your body type. A larger bust usually starts higher up and also demand more fabric to cover it in the height department too. That easily puts one in the situation where half the bra is showing, especially since most everyday-bras is quite full coverage. Adjustable shoulderstrap, or just shortening them can make a whole lot of difference here, when it might be hard to find tops that is cut high enough. Avoid tops that has a seam supposed to sit just below your bust, they will almost never fit well and instead just look terrible. And don't forget that you might need some extra long tops too to not show of that tummy of yours.

Cleavage and Cut
Showing some skin is great mainly for two reasons. First, it tends to look better since it breaks up the figure a bit and doesn't make your boobs. Secondly, it tends to make it fit better, since it opens up the fabric. You will get a wider cleavage area, but that can be fixed easily.

Wear a Vest Top Underneath
Nude Alana from Bravissimo, works well under
 most  clothes and goes up to a K in
28-bands and L from 32
If you feel uncomfortable with the amount of cleavage on display, if it gapes open or if you for any other reason feel as if you show too much skin, just wear a vest underneath. Many v-necks demands this, but it is also a way to make regular shirts to work. Just wear one under and only button it up til just below your bust. Then the boobs will have room since the shirt will be able to expand in the front. For me this worked well up to a F-cup, I cannot get away with it anymore more, but when I could this was my way to be able to dress more preppy.  This can also be adapted to jackets.

Freyas Deco i hudfärgat. Goes up a a G in
most sizes, but is quite generous.
Moulded, cleavage and support,
all in one.
A Well-fitted Bra.
The importance of wearing a well-fitting bra should never be forgotten. By moving the bust to the front of the body instead of pushing it into the under arm-area and by lifting it the clothes will automaticly look better on the body, but it will also help with the fit. The circumference of the body may be smaller and clothes tend to have more room for boobs in the front than under tha arms. By lifting the boobs to the correct position the width that does exist can be better used. And, don't forget to try the clothes on with the bra you had in mind underneath.

Black jean called Friday from Cubus, 199 SEK/about 15 pounds,
size 32 to 46 (4/6 to 20). I have these in three colours, black, raw
denim and darker washed denim, all in 34, even though I could
probably been better in a 32 in the black ones.
Stretch, high waisted and butt-space. 
High waist
With bum and hips a high waisted pant doesn't really look high waisted, while a low cut one shows half your butt. With curves you need more fabric even in height, both around the bust, but also back there. And, the fit is also usually better in general since the waist of the pant actually ends up where it is supposed to be.

Smock, elastics and drwastrings
In dresses these are some of your best friends, or atleast they should be. They enable you to go multiple sizes up to fit your boobs in, without the rest of the body becoming way too large. Just make sure you avoid sleaves, they will never fit if you go up so many sizes... 

Black dress with white polka dots and elastic waist from
H&M,  £24.99 Very generous in the bust, a bit
to baggy in the waist, but that is easily cured with a belt.

The problem with most clothes in the smock/elastic/drawstring-category is that one usually ends up with a quite unflattering empire siluette that really just gives a feeling of being pregnant.  The best and easiest way to cure it? Get a belt, or maybe a whole lot of them. Almost every women need a few elastic waist belts and a few others as well. They make the clothes fitted at your most narrow part, the waist, which really is what you need to highlight. At the same time they cover up a waist that is a bit too big.

Remember your favourites!
The absolutly best you can do for yourself is to try to make mental notes when shopping. Remember what brands, styles, fabrics, colours and sizes that fits you. The more you do that the easier it will be to find stuff that fits at the first time. It's not a fashion crime to have something that you look great in in multiple colours or patterns, I do that all the time.

When you know what to look for everything will be mych easier, and more fun!. If you want more inspiration, check out the fabolous Georgina at Fuller Figure Fuller Bust. She is absolutly amazing at making high street clothes look fantastic.

Monday, 18 July 2011

Summer 2012: The first swimwear from Curvy Kate

Next summer Curvy Kate will be launching their new swimwear collection and I'm already excited. All tankinis and bikini tops will be available from a D to a K-cup and from a 28-band to a 40. Sure, there have been stuff available in those sizes before but nothing like this.

Caribbean Curves
Caribbean Curves Balconette Bikini Top

Carribbean Curves was the set that really got to me. Leopard print and purple, what else can a girl ask for? The tankini comes with a drawstring, probably to be able to choose the length and how much you'd like to cover up.

The balconette bikini top is supposed to be lightly padded, just like all tops in the collection. According too Brood at Broods Big Bras it will be based on Curvy Kate Princess, which I know many more than me that really do like. This one is already on my "most wanted list", even though there are many month left until the release.

Rio Ruffle

Rio Ruffle is much more playful with all the ruffles and the jade with hints of purple is just lovely. The top will have just as much support as the one above, and, ruffles, have anyone seen something like that in this size range? I think I've only seen up to maybe a C-cup, but hey, we can look cute too!

Bondi Breeze

Bondi Breeze is almost boring compared to the other two, but hey, sometimes you need something a bit more neutral and leopard and ruffles isn't everybody's taste. Function is good too.

And if you do not understand why this is so exciting, pleace have a look here to see all swimwear available from Bravissimo in a 28K. This is truly great news. :)

Sunday, 15 May 2011

Some new dresses

This week I managed to finish four dresses. From the very beginning of this season I've felt a craving for light flowy summer dresses and everything pretty in the stores have just made it worse. Even though it's been two years since I last tried on pieces in woven fabric in "normal stores" I still long for them. All of these dresses have each some adjustable feature. The first one is a true wrap dress and the rest have fake-smock in the back to add some flexability. I still grow an inch or more when it comes to my bust, so this feature will hopefully enable me to wear these dresses more than just one summer.

This dress was the first project of the week. A lovely wrap inspired by Pepperberrys similar one. Having the bust darts off grain really helps with the fit, and the ribbons add another possibly to show of some more waist.
I later continued with the same fabric. Ever since my mum found a gorgeous maxidress (worn with a belt) I've wanted something similar. This was my first try and I really do like it. It does also work better with my body than I anticipated. As long as you make sure it's fitted where you're the smallest it seems to look good.
This is maxi dress number two. A bit more flattering for my figure, especially with the large leather belt added. The cup parts have been constructed to work well with Freyas Deco, the number one bra for some cleavage.
This one is almost the same as the one above, apart from the length. With the pattern and the colours of the fabric a maxi would just have been way too much. However, it is easy to see that my waist is a bit lost without a belt in a noticable colour.

Friday, 6 May 2011

A Tribute to My Mother

My body type isn’t especially alike my mum’s. Before she had me she had what now probably is best described as a “models figure”. Tall, straight and skinny with really long blonde, almost white, hair. 5 feet 10 and a 24-25 inch waist, and with a small A-cup at the most. She didn’t even used to wear bras back then. With high cheek bones and piercing blue eyes she was a real beauty.

I on the other hand as a lot shorter compared to her. Fourteen years old I filled a C-cup, but not until I was 17 my boobs I really started growing. A couple of years later I wear a GG(K) and still growing. I’m still fairly slim with a 26-inch waist, but with a large bust and quite some booty. No one on my mother’s side looks anything remotely similar to me, but about two years ago I found out that my grandmother on my father’s side had a breast reduction done way back.

After having me and my sister my mum got hips, something I still believe is hard for her to accept. Because of some (negative) medical reasons she is now more of a E-cup, and has gone from a straight slim figure to a true hourglass, which probably is even harder to accept. Her hair might not be so blonde anymore either, but the cheekbones are still there and I still find her very beautiful.

My mum didn’t really understand the whole idea of bras when I thought it was time for me to get my first. Maybe she was right back then, but later on it was a whole different story. Neither has she been able to understand my iritation of clothes that doesn’t fit me, until now when she starts to enter the same field. And suddenly I am the one to offer advice about bras...

Apart from the difficulties when it comes to shopping, I absolutely love my body. I only hope my mother at some point will be able to do the same about her’s.