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Enlarging bra pattern

JuliaT5 | Posted in Fitting on

How do I enlarge a bra pattern from a 36B to fit my friend, who is a 40DD without purchasing a new pattern?


  1. Theodora | | #1

    How much do the patterns cost? I honestly think that you are going to go to at least 12-15 dollars worth of time, trouble, and frustration trying to do this. The back pieces for instance need to be enlarged in length and width, but you need to maintain proper proportions where the strap joins the back piece, and perhaps your friend needs the straps to attach at a different point along the back than you do. In the front, you can't just add to the side of the band, you have to make all kind of adjustments so the cup is situated on the band at the right spot. And then, well, you will not only be making the sections of the cup larger, but they will also have different curves than a B cup--more exaggerated curves. Plus, the DD figure will probably require more support in terms of layers of cup material, and construction surrounding the cup, and the shoulder straps may need to be stronger.

    Now one options might be to have your friend give you a bra she has that fits her well, that is similar in construction to the one you have a pattern for. You could then examine and measure that bra and compare it to your pattern and size up from there.

    Are you good enough friends that you both won't mind lots of trial fittings and "handling?"

    Maybe some of the folks who have been working on lingerie call help you on this. This is a rather enormous difference is size and shape (relatively speaking) and you're not just increasing a pattern in two dimensions, you have to think in three dimensions. If the pattern is available, and not way out of your price range, I'd buy the right pattern, especially if it costs less than fabric and notions you might be buying for a trial garment that can't be used as a final garment, only for fitting practice.

    There is an excellent thread somewhere here in the forum from several months ago about making lingerie. It has some good fitting advice. I think it was titled "Is anyone sewing lingerie?"

    Best of luck.

  2. cintipam | | #2

    Hi Juju

    try putting the pattern on a copying machine & enlarging 25%.  That will make it 40", but you'll have to play more with the cup size.  It will be much larger than a B, but don't know if it will be a DD.  This method enlarges all parts equally, so it is wider in band, more supportive, etc.  I did this, and it worked pretty well.  But I started with 32A, enlarged 33% to make a 43DD.  It was pretty close.  HTH


    1. cintipam | | #3

      OK, I sew better than i do math.  Make that enlarge about 12%, not 25%.  Sorry!


      1. JuliaT5 | | #4

        Thanks Cintipam,

        I knew there had to be a simple way to accomplish this task.


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