My name is Lee-Ann Burgess. My wonderful mother taught me to sew when I was in primary school and I have been sewing since then. I became a high school art teacher, the wife of a hard working GP, then an ex-teacher, as full time mothering took precedence in my life. I am now an artist and art tutor.
I have never done any formal sewing courses. I am simply a home sewer who found that her favourite bra (the only bra that had ever made her 16DD bust line feel slim and attractive) was a “deleted line”. I couldn’t order one for love or money.
For many years I taught bra-making. My initial bra-making class notes expanded to become the only book on bra-making that I have ever seen. My main claim to fame (if I have one) is that when I make bras for friends, family or my clients, I don’t have to use a commercially available bra pattern. I prefer to make a bra pattern from their favourite bra. Using this pattern beautiful new bras can be produced incorporating gorgeous laces and fabrics, glass beading, etc, that fit and feel like their ‘favourite’.
Using my methods, a favourite bra becomes your bra pattern – a pattern guaranteed to fit you, support you and suit your particular breast shape. Gone are the hours of trying on dozens of bras every 8-12 months in the slim hope that one of those in the shop will be the perfect bra for you. If you can sew for yourself, then for a quarter to one half the cost of the retail price you can make your own beautiful bra. Over a number of years, this represents a considerable saving. Another benefit of being able to sew our own bras, is that we can choose the colour, texture and patterns of laces/fabrics in our bras. Every day we choose which clothes, shoes, jewellery, make-up, accessories to wear – so why shouldn’t we be able to select the bra we will wear, having the same range of choices available to us as in other areas of our lives, for instance, why shouldn’t nursing mothers be able to wear seductive red lace nursing bras if they wish?
As you can see we have been at the manufacturers’ mercy. We have had to buy and wear the bras in the shops, simply because we couldn’t successfully make our own. Thankfully, this situation is changing. All we need is the confidence to begin, some well explained instructions with helpful diagrams and some basic materials.
In my book & DVD Making Beautiful Bras I provide all the information and techniques that you need to successfully make your own bras whether using a commercial pattern, or drafting your own pattern. I have shared everything I know about bra-making, so I hope that you will find it helpful and readable. While bra-making is not a branch of sewing I would recommend that a beginner tackle, you don’t have to be a professional tailor to make some very professional looking bras, so be encouraged! If I can do it, a lot of other women can too!