Step 14 : measure measure measure

My poor eyes are tumbling around in my head from all the staring at rulers and tape-measures all week. Grading patterns sometimes can be a real struggle! Grading the lower cup was pretty straight forward but the upper cup needed some adjustments to get the right measurements in all the sizes. Just a little movement of the lines here and there did the trick to get the lengths of the underwire lines just as they should be. It sounds so easy written down but believe me, it took a lot of erasing and redrawing and remeasuring! Funny how the lines seem to change length every time the tape-measure comes along … That’s why I always use my metal tape-measure for this, at least that one is garanteed not to change length.

Those cute straps on both sides of the cup turned out to be the next headache. First of all I could not incorporate them in the same arrangement as for the upper cup, I had to make separate drawing for them to avoid an incomprehensible drawing stuffed with criss-cross lining all over the place. It’s always tricky to draw parts separately because its hard to keep a good overview of the relating proportions. And even now the lines were too much in each others way to distinguish the shape of all sizes. As a first solution I only drew the round parts at the underwire lines and the straight inner lines. They have to be completed in a different aligning to make sense of it all. For now I only finished the larger size I want to use for the second test bra.


Next was grading the bra band which I expected to be a piece of cake compared to the cups. Boy, was I wrong! It turned out to be the top struggle of the week. The front just did not work well at all in the largest sizes and I had to change the shape of the cup rounding. Of course this affected the other lines as well so the whole band had to be redone. Because the second bra test will not be a long bra I left out the lace overlay in the band grading for now.

At first glance the band seems to be drawn with quite simple straight lines which should be pretty easy to grade. But somehow it was very hard to get the size progress evenly. I just had to keep tilting the lines up and down, from left to right to get it all evenly graded. It was a good thing I couldn’t work full time on this and had to take care of orders and such in between. That kept up the spirit! And one tip from me; when finished always remeasure again in the morning …


In the meantime I’ve also started to work on the notes I took while sewing the finished bra. because in the end the pattern will come with full descriptions of how to sew them together. Notes made in between are always a bit messy so the wise thing to do is write them properly when the process is still fresh. The text will be in Dutch for now, translating in English and German will follow at the end.

tekstaantekeningen beha1

Next thing will be a second bra from this design with lace cups and plain straps and back. Maybe it would be smarter to first make this from boring white test material again but I’ve plenty of remnants and it’s so much more fun to use nice colours. So I picked out this combination in soft blue and black for the test bra.

cobi beha2



For an overview of all the Merckwaerdigh internet activities take a look at


3 thoughts on “Step 14 : measure measure measure

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