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Hello! I was hoping someone could help me?

I am making my wedding dress with a bustier top. I’ve been working from the Kwik Sew 3166 bustier pattern and have adapted it a little for a woven fabric and to get the right fit.

I’ve had a few problems with the cups – the first toile/muslin that I made there was a lot of excess fabric along the seam that goes across the widest point of the bust – enough fabric to pinch around 4cm- I call it a duck beak.! I cut another toile with a smaller size cup but it still had the same effect.

I took the cups out and removed the inner cup lining. I then put the lower part of the bodice on and laid the cups over my bust. I pinned the cups on moving the lower part of the bodice around until it all fit as closely as I could get it to. I then stitched the cups on and will adapt the pattern to remove the excess from the lower part of the bodice.

The cups are nearly right but not quite – there is still about 5-8mm excess that puckers a little along the seam across the widest part of the bust – any ideas on how can I get rid of this excess? Normally I would leave as it does look ok, it’s just for my wedding dress I want it to be perfect!

I’ve done pattern cutting before but not for lingerie/bras so don’t know the best way of adapting them. I tried stitching a slightly bigger seam allowance along the seam but it didn’t change the excess fabric.

I would really appreciate any advice. I’ve attached a couple of images – I hope you can see what I mean – it is sort of puckered along the seam. Thanks!


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  • Aek_4345_large

    Apr 4, 2014, 03.24 PMby clothingengineer

    Did you add the underwires to it yet? I strongly suggest adding them before you tweak the fit anymore. They will hold the cups closer to your ribcage and you may find as a result that you will fill out the cups more.

    You may also want to consider adding a foam lining to the cups. You can buy it online from Make Bra. I find it helps a lot with smoothing things out on a less busty figure.

  • 2_large

    Apr 6, 2014, 06.18 PMby maddieom

    Thanks for your reply! I wasn’t going to put in underwires as I will be wearing a bra underneath – the same bra as shown in the photos (I have quite a small bust and found this bra from Rigby & Peller which made me feel a million times more confident!) Do you think I should try underwires anyway? Also thanks for the tip about foam lining – I’ve just bought some to try out & hopefully that will help. I hadn’t even thought of that before! Thanks again!

  • Aek_4345_large

    Apr 7, 2014, 01.06 PMby clothingengineer

    I would try it with underwires but go up at least one underwire size to allow room for the bra. They’re inexpensive and if you don’t like how it looks/feels then you can always take them out again!

    Does the Rigby & Peller bra happen to have molded foam cups? If it does then it is probably a lot of the fitting issues you are having. Molded foam cups tend to give a very round profile and seamed cups, especially horizontally seamed ones, give a more pointed/natural profile. So putting a molded foam cup behind a seamed one one it is like trying to fit a ball inside a cone and you end up with the situation of too much depth/not enough width in the cup. While the volume is technically the same the shaping is wrong and you get wrinkling at the bust apex while the rest of the cup may feel too small. You need to reshape the bustier cups more by flattening out the curve of that horizontal seam. You can either take it in a little bit more right across the apex of the bust, let out the seam at the sides of the apex, or try doing both. To save time you could make a bunch of tester cups and hold them up against yourself until you have one that is promising, then sew it into the bustier body and continue tweaking from there.

    Make Bra just came out with a video on constructing a foam cup bra that you might find helpful for when you add the foam lining.

  • 2_large

    Apr 27, 2014, 01.14 PMby maddieom

    Thanks so much for your help (and sorry for my slow reply!). The bra does have moulded cups and that’s why the bustier cups weren’t fitting – I don’t know how I didn’t think of that! I put the toile/muslin on inside out and took in the bust seam where it needed to be re-shaped to fit around the bra. I then took the cups off and re-positioned them to fit perfectly. You have really helped me – thanks so much!

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