chebe: (Spools of thread)
[personal profile] chebe
You've decided you really want to make your own underwear, you've scrounged up a pattern or two, maybe located a half-decent book, but now you're faced with a list of supplies you've never come across before. Where do you get this stuff?!

Note: I am in no way affiliated with, or sponsored by any of these places. I'm just a customer, who would have liked to find pointers and information more easily. I hope these resources are of some help, and indeed if you have some of your own I'd love to hear about them! have a Specialist Elastics section. The absolute basics, all in white. Hopefully they take dye well. They also carry Clover. So say you wanted to follow a certain bias-strip tutorial, you could get the bias-strip maker here.

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Two sizes of knicker elastic

Bra-makers Supply (Canada) have a great range of materials; elastics, straps, boning, cups, fabrics, their own patterns, books, DVDs, and very helpfully kits and fabric combo bundles! Home to the invaluable 'Bra-makers Manual', you're sure to find anything you need to make bras. However, they're in Canada. And ship internationally via Ground. Which means shipping is reasonable, and weight isn't a huge issue, but it takes a while. For example, I ordered from them on the 10th of November, it shipped same day, and arrived 24th of December! They do provide tracking, but it stops working once the package leaves Canada. Still, great site if you like to plan ahead.

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Pattern, fabric combo pack, bra kit & underwires

Sew Sassy (USA) also have a great range. They also do kits, but they use Kwik Sew patterns. I personally find their site hard to navigate, and often you are limited in your choices as they don't always have a full range. But, that range extends beyond just bras into lingerie in general. Also, they ship Airmail. But, I ordered from them the 10th of November, and the package didn't ship until the 7th of December. I'm not sure if that's normal, but once it shipped it arrived quickly, on the 13th December.

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Kwik Sew pattern & bra kit in black

Bra Components (USA) are another good option. They carry a somewhat smaller range, as the name implies, just bra components! They do do kits as well, but no patterns. One great thing is the range of colours of available! You can get a swatch pack which is really helpful in finding the right colours. Only downside I found, because I'm picky, is that their black is somewhat navy-ish. Otherwise, they ship by Airmail; I ordered the 7th of February, they shipped the 8th, and it arrived the 13th! Absolutely great if you need something fast.

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Colour swatch pack, satin bows & various picot elastics

But what if you want to make more than bras? Most people are lucky being able to source locally a huge variety of fabrics. Sadly this is not the case for me, and oddly one of the hardest things to get is cotton jersey. (Which is always, always used to line crotches in knickers.) I figured since I only needed small amounts of each colour (to match fashion fabric) I'd get lots of white, and just dye as needed. helped me out here. They do flat rate shipping, so you might want to wait until you've a few things to get, but it's still very reasonable. Their selection is a bit hit-and-miss, but they do good basics (e.g. cotton jersey) at a good price.

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White cotton jersey, and baby pink hand-dye

Then there are other places for picking up lace, stretch lace, and other trims; like Lucy's Fabrics and (as I mentioned before) Deb's Lace & Trims, both USA.

And if you're thinking about trying your hand at corsetry I hear good things about Sew Curvy (UK, and they do kits!).

Okay, that's all I've got. Comments, questions, pointers, links, etc all welcome!
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