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Topic: underwear cami with support - can it be done?  (Read 1586 times)
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M Fox
« on: April 07, 2008 12:31:14 AM »

I'm unable to wear regular bras because of back problems.  Unfortunately, I could use a little support, as one side is a bit lower than the other.  I normally wear a cotton cami, which is comfortable - is there any way to add some type of support that won't shift around?  I can't have a strap across the middle back area, and that is where the staying factor usually comes from.  I have some bras that fit fine, but can't wear - is there anyway to incorporate these into the cami?
Thanks for any ideas!
« Reply #1 on: April 07, 2008 11:43:28 AM »

Is your whole back in issue? or is it just the braline area? is it something that might change eventually or a permanent fixture? how many different bra style have you tried?
I'm assuming the tanks with shelf bras pose the same problem as regular bras?
Are you really busty(D cup or bigger) or average (B or C cup)?

What exactly is it about regular bras that makes then uncomfortable to the point you won't wear them?

Answering these (or most- some are very personal) might help you find some new solutions but will also help us come up with more ideas Smiley
« Reply #2 on: April 07, 2008 02:45:58 PM »

Well, without answering some of Penlowe's questions, I can give you a couple of suggestions.  When you make the shelf bra you can use power net - it's going to give you a lot more support than what using self fabric will.  You can also add cups to your shelf bra when you make it - it will take a bit more fitting, but you'll have more support.

« Reply #3 on: April 07, 2008 05:03:15 PM »

Best way to tackle this is too look at how shelf bra camisoles are constructed in ready to wear by looking at what's in store. You can accommodate larger than B breast by sewing cups on to the shelf insert using a zigzag stitch around the cups and then cut out the fabric in the middle. This is what I've used in the past for dance costumes. Hard to describe in words I know but I think ones you have the pieces it will make sense.
M Fox
« Reply #4 on: April 07, 2008 11:21:23 PM »

I'm more in the normal-to-small range - about a 34 B.  The problem with my back is mainly at the brastrap line, but also the shoulder straps can be an issue.  It's because of my ribs - some of them easily will slip slightly out of place (I think it's called sublux?) and it's very painful, and requires a chiropractor to put it back, along with muscle relaxers.  The chiro I went to several years ago is the one who recommended no more bras, and I've had only a few problems since.  Oh, and these problems are partially due to past injuries.

I'm thinking I might be able to get a piece of stretchy fabric to put across the back and have the bra in the front with a front hook?  Maybe a stretchy lace?  I'll have to dig around in my stash.

« Reply #5 on: April 08, 2008 05:27:16 AM »

Ah, ok yeah. I was afraid there was a skin condition or a brace of some kind- it's a concentrated tightness issue.
So you need to spread out the support system, super wide soft straps & back band.

My mom is a breast cancer survivor and has nerve damage in the underarm area where a bra strap rubs making them miserably uncomfortable. She has developed her own camisoles that are tollerable & decent enough to wear whole teaching high school kids. It's a lingere type cami with cups (one side is stuffed to replace the missing breast). The side band is about 2 1/2 inch wide elastic lace like you'd have on panties. The shoulder straps are not an issue for her so they are like regular bra straps, but you could easily do them from the same lace.
« Reply #6 on: April 08, 2008 09:29:49 AM »

Ouch!!!  Considering that the strap causes most of your pain, I would skip the powernet - it might be too tight and cause issues in itself.  I think you'll be fine using self fabric and adding cups for support.

« Reply #7 on: April 08, 2008 11:17:04 AM »

Kwik Sew 3115 has a cami pattern with a built in shelf bra, if  that helps. I made several for my daughter a few years ago, and she prefers them to bras in most circumstances. If you make it fitted enough, it's possible you'd be able to just put the shelf bra in the front, and attach it at the side seams.  I haven't tried it to know if it works, but it might be worth a shot.  You could also try one of the bras that's designed to wear with backless dresses (where the support band is closer to the waist). 

I agree that subluxation in the rib area can be quite painful (I work for a chiropractor). I hope you find something that works well for you.


Where did all this fabric come from? I CAN'T have bought THAT much!
M Fox
« Reply #8 on: April 08, 2008 06:09:15 PM »

Thank you! I've got a couple different ideas to try out based on your suggestions.  Craftsters are so nice!  Grin
« Reply #9 on: April 09, 2008 06:47:36 AM »

I'll be honest, the lace my mom uses is hard to find wide enough & only comes in rather boring colors.

There is a great thread in the Curvacious Craftsers D & Q titled "Bramageddon" it's 20+ pages long but toward the end are some really great links to places that sell bra making materials. I ordered the bra making kit & book from the Needle Nook (links in that thread) and mom & I are going to work together on some. Smiley
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