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What I Made: Lana

kake mi

I have a fear of sewing lace. Sewing lace that’s lined – no problem. I could do it with my eyes closed. Okay, not really. Sewing lace that’s unlined, however, that’s a horse of a different color. Have you seen the movie, A League of Their Own? There’s a great scene, one of my favorites, where Mae, played by Madonna, says, “What if at a key moment in the game, my uniform bursts open, and, oops, my bosom comes flying out…”

It’s an unrealistic scenario that most likely won’t happen, but I get what she’s saying. I’d say that 95% of the bras I make are lined (tricot, stretch mesh or powernet) and this is because I have that same unrealistic fear. My thoughts, slightly exaggerated for effect:

  • The sewing machine might suck the lace into the feed dogs and ruin my next favorite bra.
  • Since boobs are a whopping A cup, which is pretty close to ginormous, they’ll rip through the delicate lace, maybe even my shirt, exposing onlookers to my (voluminous) tatas 😳
  • How will the needle sew through all those holes? That’s like punching air and that’s not very effective, now is it?

The direction I want to head with my lingerie is delicate, meaning I’ll have to grow some boobs… errr balls?  and sew unlined lingerie. Oi vey!

So this is my newest bra, Lana. I’ll spare you the construction and the pattern details since I’ve posted so many me-made halter bras. I even realized a free halter bra pattern earlier this week. Just know that it was the fourth one. There definitely was a learning curve, but I’m happy to report that I started to get the hang of sewing unlined lace with this one. Booyah!

So I’ll leave you with this – have you ever had a sewing fear? I have a feeling some of you will comment with knits or fly zippers. Ugh to fly zippers.

Also, what are your tips for sewing unlined lace? Do you used a particular kind of needle, thread and/or tension?

bottom band galloon lace and trims from Tailor Made Shop

12 Comments

  1. Reply

    Birgit

    Very pretty, Maddie! I get the fear, though…

    • Reply

      maddie

      You get the fear of the bosom flying out or unlined lace? 🙂

  2. Reply

    Nurul Nadiah

    For sewing unlined lace, it helps me when I support the lace by basting it to some pattern tissue.

    • Reply

      maddie

      I’ve always had a hard time tearing/removing the tissue paper afterwards. Is there a particular type that you use?

      • Reply

        Nurul Nadiah

        I’ve used tissue paper by Burda Style, among others. The stuck bits usually come off with gentle washing.

  3. Reply

    Regan Louise

    It’s lovely — and my fear is actually not knits, or spandex, or things like that. . . I fear tricky wovens like chiffon and silk ! So easy to mess up ! No stretch to hide mistakes !

    • Reply

      maddie

      Chiffons and knits are scary for the same reason as unlined lace – feed dog suckage. You can thank the commenter below you (casakelley) for that technical term 🙂

  4. Reply

    CasaKelley

    ugh to fly zips is right! I’ve gotten over a fear of knits, but I do fear single layers of lace for the feed dog suckage.

  5. Reply

    Amy Mayen

    I’m a 36 F and I’m scared of sewing cups…period. Because I know they’ll make my boobs shaped weird or point east and west or etc…The worst part is knowing I’ll have to sew about 30 to get the fit right. So far I’ve only made soft bras. Bra fear is real.

    What about some kind of seam tape to reinforce the seams…or ribbon maybe?

  6. Reply

    myfriendamelia

    Zippers are pretty much my least favorite thing. But I definitely don’t feel comfortable with unlined lace either. If you do tutorials or share what you’ve learned, I’ll be very appreciative!

  7. Reply

    Emma Capponi

    My trick is make sure you’ve got long threads coming from your machine, and place your fabric in like normal. Then carefully turn the handle of your machine so it does a few slow stitches without using the pedal – usually four or five is enough, but just get it so the feed dogs are gripping your fabric properly. Then holding the long threads tight you put a bit of tension on them to help pull the fabric through as you slowly use the pedal. The few starting stitches means you’re already out of the danger zone of your machine eating your fabric, and the tension helps it all get started. Then as long as your lace isn’t crazy open you should be fine! I also don’t tend to back stitch on delicate fabrics, I just use the long threads to tie a knot at the ends to secure it.

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