Sheer Delight

Do you love the look of those sheer bras in ready-to-wear but have hesitated to use sheer fabrics in your own bra-making projects? Why is that? Working with sheer fabrics is not more difficult (some would argue that they are easier) than traditional bra fabrics. They are certainly easier than working with stretch fabrics. Let’s share some Sheer Delight and uncover some of the myths and mysteries about working with sheers.

There are lots of reasons for embracing some sheer delight!

  1. They are cool in summer
  2. Laces look fabulous paired with sheer
  3. Sheers are supportive
  4. Sheers are lightweight
  5. Sheer cup lining, being 100% nylon dyes easily

It is important to understand that sheer fabrics are either woven, or knitted. Woven sheers, such as Sheer Cup Lining or far more supportive than a knitted sheer. Use Sheer cup lining for the cups, either alone or paired with lace or other sheers for the cups and the frame.  There are some that would claim that sheer fabrics are not supportive enough for bra cups but I disagree. I wear a 4.75 BCD which is a fairly substantial size, and one layer is fine for me and as supportive as duoplex. I make the cups and the front frame from sheer cup lining.  You could also use two layers of sheer fabric and enclose the seams so that the inside of the cup is as smooth as possible. The second layer also adds more support too for the larger sizes. 

Try the Adore Dot or Fun Dot to add some polka dots to your wardrobe. I also use embroidered tulle fabrics (such as the Bumblebee fabric) and use a layer of sheer cup lining under it. This gives me maximum support and clear visibility of the embroidered pattern.


Use the knitted sheer for the bands on lightweight cups or for the cups on a bralette or a nightgown. This could be the Super Fine Stretch mesh for example.

What about patterns?

You don’t have to have dozens of bra patterns to create a dozen looks – but don’t think you cannot use the patterns you already have. We have used almost every one of the Pin-up Girls bra patterns to make up out of sheer fabrics. The Classic, Linda, Sherri, Shelley and Judy are always popular for sheers, especially combined with lace. Naturally the newest patterns, Freja and Frieda lend themselves very well to use with sheer.

All of the jewels, such as the Ruby, Sapphire, Amethyst and Diamond can be used without the foam lining and used as sheer only. They are stunning! You can even use a coloured lining under a sheer polka dot, such as this Fun Dot Diamond!

Let’s not forget the bralette pattern, our Sweet Sixteen! Perfect in a transparent sheer for light-as-air wearing! if you want some great ideas for changing the bralette pattern into a whole library of patterns to wotrk with, consider our book, Make & Fit Bralettes. There are dozens of ideas of how to change the bralette into many fashionable versions.

A question I always get asked is – Do I have to use a special needle or thread to sew sheers? Nope. You can use a Universal size 70  needle and the Guterman thread 120 that we sell. The fine size of the thread allows the stitches to disappear into the sheer fabric.  However, that’s exactly what you want – ne need to have the thread look like rope on the fine fabric!

What about sheer laces?

If you are talking about sheer embroidered tulle laces, you have found a perfect complement to sheer cup lining. Remember, virtually all laces can be used over the sheer cup lining, to completely cover the cups and the frame, or it can be used strategically. No matter which way you choose to lay out the lace over the sheer, it will produce a different look each time. Just position different laces in slightly different places and you will change the look. That’s what ready-to-wear does and you can do it too.

For a fuss-free way to choose laces and sheers, why not consider one of our Sheer and lace Kits. We take the guesswork out of the process and we include everything you need to make your bra project. No matter which bra style you choose (the Classic series, Jewel series or Bralette series) you can rest assured that everything in in the package, ready to go!

If you decide to treat yourself to sheer delight, why not share it with us on Facebook, Intsagram or TikTok? We would love to see what you create!


4 replies
  1. Starr
    Starr says:

    Thank you! Most informative. Maybe I’ll get around to using some of that blue dot I got that I had to have but could never figure out what to do with!

  2. Niki Bee
    Niki Bee says:

    Thanks so much for the post! I’ve been wondering about how supportive I should expect the sheer cup lining to be. Very helpful!

  3. Diane Harold
    Diane Harold says:

    Sheer cup lining is so versatile. When paired with a wick away lining it makes for a supportive and light weight sports bra. And it’s fun to layer colours too.


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