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Camisole with built-in bra shelf

Malindi | Posted in Patterns on

Can anyone recommend such a pattern or advise how to install a shelf in a regular camisole pattern? Thank you.


  1. dollmarm | | #1

    I bought a kit (so to speak) but I bought it at Walmart when they had their Sewing Dept..  Do you already have the shelf ? Mine stated to follow the pattern instructions.  My pattern didn't call for one, but I use one any way.  I like that extra support. I have one top that has a well fitted bra sewn into it that only attaches to the sides.  It is very supportive.  The fabric is fitting and the bra has that suction around the bottom so it stays put. You can also take one of your own bras that fits well and attach it to the sides.   I have one like that.  What type of fabric is the camisole? This might a difference in what type of bra form you use. I have usually bought more than made this style of top.  I hope some of what I have shared helps some - let me know whatcha' think.  I look forward to what others will share with you,  :~) 

    1. Malindi | | #4

      What I had in mind was making some tops in lycra/cotton blend for casual wear. I don't like the rtw with thin straps and visualised a more covered top but, being a 38D, need support, hence the shelf!

      1. dollmarm | | #7

        OH I do not like the think strap either.  I am the opposite in size - I do like the support as well too.  I do have  several that have wide straps with that extra fabric inside of the shirt and the elastic that fits under the breast.  I have a strapless bra that I wear with these.   Finding a good fitting one for any size can be a chore at times.  Good luck w/ your search.  If I see a pattern to help - I will let you know.  :~)

        1. Malindi | | #8

          I have done more research, checking out active wear rather than intimate apparel, and came across a KwikSew pattern which appears to meet my criteria: wide straps snd built-in shelf, for knits. It is #3115. I went ahead and ordered it through Pattern Review. Will report back in due course.

          1. dollmarm | | #10

            I trust this will be a Great find you.  Thanks for the # I will look it up too.  I look forward to hearing back from you.   :~)

  2. Elizard | | #2
    1. Cathie | | #3

      Hi ladies, this is a good way to stay cool, and also is more discreet. Why not look at a RTW one, and emulate the technique. I have several, but really need them bigger, as am D to DD cup. I exercise a lot, and want to be cool. I have seen them in lycra/cotton, with the upper "bodice" repeated, like a lining, to just under bust. Then there is a soft, yet firm elastic sewn on at the bottom of this "lining". If, like me, you are bigger or smaller than the usual B cups, change your pattern, and lining first. For those of us with larger cups, but narrow shoulders, a FBA would be needed. Good luck!!!!

      1. Malindi | | #5

        I think you and I are the same track, and have similar 'problems'! I will explore your suggestions. You are correct about having to adjust patterns to accommodate D/DD cups, which is why I find Sandra Betzina's patterns so useful because in her larger range she makes this adjustment.
        Thanks for your suggestions.

    2. Malindi | | #6

      Thanks, That suggestion has given me food for thought. I am going to take a look at yoga patterns.

    3. stitchagain | | #9

      Is this Burda pattern somehow accessed through the website?  Or does one have to go to the fabrics store?

      Thank you for your response.

      I just saw swimsuit separates that were something like this.





  3. Teaf5 | | #11

    One of the sewing magazines had an article on doing this last year; I can't remember which one. Basically, they copied the upper half of the bodice, allowed enough length for a turned up casing, and then treated the shelf as an interlining while making up the top, catching the shelf/interlining at the neck and sleeve edges but leaving the side seams free. After stitching the neckline and armholes, they stitched the side seams of the outside and interlining separately and then made the casing and inserted the elastic.

    1. Malindi | | #12

      Thanks for the info. It sounds logical and I will give it a try.

      1. Cathie | | #13

        Lots of good suggestions here. I am a DD cup, and 46 inches. But, I love camisoles, with support, especially for exercise, or for hot flashes at home. I purchased a "yoga wear" camisole, with shelf bra, and it is made like Teaf5 says. I would need more length over the bust in the "lining". There are 2 straps at each shoulder, very narrow, but seem to have elastic inside them. So there is GREAT support. If you need the cups bigger, a way is to add 1 inch through the front bodice, horizontally at bust level, and maybe curve out the upper bodice side seams, from upper top, out, and back in under bust. The largest of the curve being about 1/4 inches. Ease to back. The one I bought has no "casing" - which might be bulky, but soft elastic attached to bottom of "lining", under the breasts. (The front  bodice and lining need to be longer, if you are busty).

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