How to Make Underwear

Hello, lovelies! Welcome to part two of my tutorial, the first being How to Make a Soft Bra . This time I’ll be showing you how to make underwear, thus completing your set. I apologize for the terrible photographs, I’m working out of a tiny dorm room and don’t have a lot in terms of studio space, so bear with me!

Things you’ll need:

  • Half a yard of your choice of fabric (or fabrics, if you decide to use a pattern requiring two different fabrics)
  • 100 % Cotton Jersey in the color of your choosing (that’ll be the gusset, or “crotch piece”)
  • 2-3 Yards 1/4-3/8″ elastic
  • 1 cutting mat (optional)
  • 1 rotary cutter or fabric scissors
  • The pattern of your choice
  • a serger (optional)

First thing’s first, pick a pattern that you want to work with. Read through the instructions, and then get together all the supplies you’ll need. I’ve chosen to use OhhhLulu’s Grace pattern and the Bra Maker’s Supply’s pattern, though I also recommend Cloth Habit’s free panty pattern, Watson Bikini pattern, or the Orange Lingerie pattern.

Start out the same way you started with your soft bra; by laying out the pattern pieces on your fabric and cutting them out.

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If you’re using fabric with little stretch, fold your fabric at a 45 degree angle and place your pattern atop it in order to maximize stretch.

Once you have all of your pieces, head over to your sewing machine!

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If you’re using a pattern that has the top of the gusset left visible, start out by serging or zigzag stitching the top of the crotch piece. If all the crotch piece seams are hidden, skip this step.

Then sew the crotch piece to the back of the panties. This part took me a while to learn, and I can’t tell you how many times I’ve sewn the crotch piece to the wrong side of the garment. To simplify things, I’m going to put everything in steps:

1. Lay the back piece of the underwear down on a surface. Take the crotch piece and line up the right side of the crotch piece against the wrong side of the panty back. Sew that in place.

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Like this!

2. Next, take the non-gusset crotch piece and place the right side of the crotch piece against the right side of the back piece. Sew in place with a straight stitch. Once you get the hang of steps 1 and 2, you can combine them.
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3. If you’re using a pattern that has the top of the crotch piece visible, then you’re done this section. Yay!

However, if you’re using a pattern that hides both ends of the gusset, you’ll want to follow steps 4 and 5.

4. Roll the panty back in between the two crotch pieces. Take the panty front and sandwich it between the two crotch pieces. The right side of the non-gusset crotch piece and the right side of the panty front should be pressed together.

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The panty front, in between the crotch pieces

5. Turn the panty right side-out. It should look a little something like this.

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Finish sewing the panty together, attaching the sides. 20150803_111221

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Now it’s elastic time. Grab your elastic and sew it to the right side of the garment, making sure the picot edge is facing inwards.

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Sew it on using the same technique used in the How to make a Soft Bra. Repeat this step as necessary, whether you’re sewing elastic on all of the openings or just the hip opening. If you’re not going to put elastic on the leg openings, use either a twin needle (about $6 CAD) or, if you have one, a cover stitch machine to finish the openings.

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I forgot to serge the top of the gusset, but this is what a twin needle on the inside will look like. On the outside, it will be two parallel stitches.

Here’s what you should have at this point (unless you used a twin needle on the leg openings instead of elastic).

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You know what’s left now? Adding embellishments! Take your bows, buttons, or rosettes and stitch them onto the panty either by hand or using a machine.

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Congratulations, you’re finished!

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