Adding A Built-in Bra

Sometimes, on those super hot days of lounging around the house, a tank with a built-in bra is the way to go! But not all of tanks provide this luxury. Other times, a separate bra gets a little too much exposure and unwanted attention.

Here’s how you can fix that by adding a built-in bra.

Gather your materials:

Green: the original garment; Bue: template; Pink: sacrificial material

You might notice the pink tank from a previous post… this alteration was the reason the other shirt was short by 10 inches.

Take both shirts, the sacrificial and the template, and fold them in half at the front and back. Like so:

Put the template on top of the other and cutty cutty! I put the bottom of the template at the bottom of the pink so I could make good use of the bottom hem on the pink. Otherwise, you might want to cut it an inch longer so you can sew a hem.

Next, turn the garment inside out and face both pieces wrong side to wrong side and pin.

Try to get a good match with the thread because the stitching might be seen.

If you don’t have an exact match, go with the one a shade darker.

I’m using the middle spool

Stitch in the ditch from the outside of the garment. It’s ok if the shelf is visible through the top. We’ll trim this later.

Once finished, check your seam.

Pin the areas where you need to go back and restitch.

Use some sharp scissors to cut away the visible fabric.

Time to add the elastic!

Act like a dork as you get your measurement.

Measure out your unstretched elastic and add 1 inch. Pin it together on top of itself.

Stitch your elastic closed (make sure it isn’t twisted).

Time to pin it to the bra-shelf. Remember, I made use of the previous hem. Pin the elastic to the wrong side of the bra-shelf.

I do this in a “compass” fashion:

like this:

Pinning elastic to less stretchy fabric can be tricky. I flatten my fabric as best as possible, then stretch my elastic to the same size of the area it will be stitched to. I like to use my ironing board for this because it is cushion-y and I an pin straight through. I used 3 pins to keep my elastic in place as I stretched it to the other side so I could pin it around the garment.

Don’t drop the pins! That’s a dangerous game!

This is why I use a magnetic pin catcher

Use a zig-zag stitch set to catch the elastic on both edges.

As you stitch, pull the elastic so the fabric is relaxed flat.

Try it on and admire your work!

Well done!

Enjoy that built-in!

*Cheers my Dears!*

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