I love lingerie. Lace. Silk. Satin. I love it all; however, if you were to open my lingerie drawers, you would not know this. You would find several rows of identical beige t-shirt bras and cotton panties. My nightwear collection is worse. An old t-shirt and threadbare cotton pj pants have become my evening uniform. It is, at best, underwhelming.
How has this happened?! When I reflect on the dismal state of my lingerie and sleepwear, there are two reasons that come to light.
- I am cheap. The high cost of RTW lingerie and sleepwear seems extravagant to me. Spending $50 to $70 on a bra is ridiculous. There is barely any fabric involved and underwires aren’t gold plated… I recently admired an embroidered beauty on La Perla’s website and realized it would set me back over $700, I nearly passed out. Panties aren’t much better. On La Perla’s website, they have a georgette panty listed at over $200. On the other end of the market, Victoria’s Secret sells lacy numbers for $14. Admittedly, this is not bank-breaking, but when compared to the cost of fabric, it still feels like a high price. Sleepwear is worse. A cute pj set from Eberjey costs $120. In short, I want pretty lingerie, but I don’t want to go poor building a beautiful collection.
- Nothing fits quite right. My drawers are filled with identical bras and panties because I found a style that fits and bought multiples. I’m boring myself, but I prefer boredom to hours in fitting rooms struggling with bras and panties that gap here and are tight there.
There are some bright spots in my lingerie collection: two me-made bras and a few lovely robes I received as gifts when I got married. Surprisingly, my me-made bras fit better than the expensive (but boring) store-bought bras. Another point in the hand-mades’ favor is the fact my husband has… ahem… expressed his appreciation of theses brassieres. He’s requested I make more.
Struck by the sad state of my collection, I’ve decided to make some improvements. As a sewist with some bra making under her belt, I can take matters into my own hands and build the collection I want. (Sewing is AWESOME!) Assuming I don’t go crazy buying expensive fabrics, I should be able to build a collection at a fraction of the cost of RTW. To build my collection, I’ve decided to use some sleepwear patterns I already own and I plan on purchasing several lingerie patterns. As I sew, I will review the patterns I use on this blog. On IG, I’ll document my progress with a fancy hashtag: #letstalklingerie
Below is my current plan.
- More Marlborough Bras by Orange Lingerie. I took a workshop with Orange Lingerie a while back and had a great experience. My current me-made bras are Marlboroughs.
- Boylston Bra by Orange Lingerie. This is a pretty non-stretch fabric bra option.
- A strapless Esplanade Bra also by Orange Lingerie. I’m nervous about this make. Good strapless bras are tough to find in RTW, so I’m a little worried this will be a huge fit challenge.
- Madalynne X Simplicity 8436 bra and panty. This bra will round out my collection with its plunging neckline.
- Evie la Luve’s Esme and Bella panties.
- Kingston Thong by Orange Lingerie. I’ve made this once before, but I cut a size too small. I think, in the right size, it will be fantastic.
I already own several sleepwear sewing patterns. I intend on sewing these before making any new purchases.
- Simplicity 1502. I’m thinking views C and F.
- Simplicity 1720. I made view C ages ago when my sewing skills were still weak. I want to remake it without wonky seams. I also want to sew the matching pants from view D.
- Seamwork’s Lisbon. I’ve had a caramel silk from Mood and matching lace in my stash forever to make this night gown. I think it’s time!
I’m not creating a timeline for this project. I’m still working hard to learn more about garment fit, so I anticipate I’ll alternate sewing lingerie and sleepwear with fussier day-wear projects. My current goal is to sew at least one piece for #letstalklingerie each month, but if life gets in the way, I’m okay with that. It will all get done eventually!
If your lingerie drawers are also in need of some overhauling, feel free to join me and tag your makes on IG so I can follow along! If you have a pattern you love that I’ve missed here, please let me know. I learn so much from other sewists!