Bra-making Class 3, Part 4, By Pauline from Australia
Problem: Help making mastectomy bras, bras where one breast is very different in size to the other, or a less-than-full upper cup where the majority of the breast volume has sunken down to the bottom of the cup leaving a cave effect in the top half of the bra.
Solution: You can take a dart through the made cup tapering from nothing - to a bit through the nipple point and out to nothing again - remembering Not to alter the seam lines - it must start and finish inside the cup. That works when you don't have a lot to take out.
What I tend to do is pad out the bottom cup - like a push-up bra - not on the sides to give cleavage but the whole lower cup to put the breast back where you want it - so you don't look quite so flat-chested with lumps down on the waist line.
I also cut the bottom cup into 3 sections - add seam allowances, stitch it back together - reinforce the seams - and this helps to give support up as well.
You can add a little pouch to the lower cup (like in mastectomy bras) and add a little elliptical shape to give the uplift as well - they can be removed for washing. Don't add padding to the upper cup as that just adds more downward push and doesn't solve the problem if you have a lot of droop.
Hope these ideas work for you, and any one else reading this. Try putting the bra on and inserting bits of wadding (batting) to see where you want the uplift. Don't push it up too far or you'll look like you have two lumps out the bottom of your chin!
For a peek at bras sewn by Pauline, have a look at the Examples Page.