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Add a Hidden Foam Cup Pocket to a Sports Bra

Learn an easy method for adding an inner pocket to hold a foam cup in a sports bra. Kimberly Larcom, owner and designer of AstroSportswear Activewear, details the steps to creating the pocket, which is invisible from the bra’s right side.

This tutorial is a bonus to Kimberly’s instructions for creating a well-fitting, comfortable sports bra in “Sports Bra Upgrades,” from Threads #208 (April/May 2020). Many women find it difficult to find a sports bra that fits perfectly and has the right amount of support for their lifestyle.

Kimberly suggests it may be easier to make your own. Her advice ranges from how to pick materials, to selecting the right pattern, to neatly attaching the rib cage band.

Benefits of a sports bra foam cup pocket

The inner pocket, which she explains below, is made of a stretch mesh intralining that holds the cup between the bra’s lining and outer fabric for a secure fit and easy removal. Foam cups add support and help to smooth the body’s silhouette. They are available from most bra supply stores, such as Bra-makers Supply and Sew Sassy Lingerie.

Create a foam cup pocket

1. Cut the intralining. Before beginning construction on the sports bra, cut an additional bra front piece from stretch mesh. Pin this piece to the lining front’s wrong side.
2. Split the cup area. Sew a straight line down the center front, through both layers, using a stretch stitch or narrow zigzag stitch to enable the fabric to stretch during wear. This forms the separation for the cups on each side.sports bra intralining stitching line
3. Trace the pocket opening. On the lining’s right side, draw a semicircle at the side seam. The shape should be approximately 1 1/2 inches to 2 inches high and 1 inch wide. Place the semicircle shape at least 1/2 inch down from armscye, so the opening is not obstructed after construction.Traced pocket opening for sports bra
4. Overlock the pocket opening. Following the semicircle marking, overlock or cut and overcast the lining fabric layer. This finishes the opening edge. Repeat on the bra’s other side.

overlock the sports bra pocket opening
5. Construct the bra according to the pattern instructions. Make sure you do not sew the cup opening closed. When the bra construction is finished, insert a foam cup through the opening.


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