Revisiting the Zero Waste Bra

It brought a certain joy to my heart when my teenage daughter asked if I could have another stab at making her a zero waste bra. Challenge accepted!

It’s been 18 months since I attempted a zero waste bra. (See the two blog posts on this: the first one, and the second one with the pattern.) It was fairly successful but my downfall was lack of comfy elastic and other haberdashery, and I gave up and we went to the bra shop.

The original red zero waste bra.
Here’s the original one, sans cups.

However, this time I’m organised and I’ve ordered the necessary bits and pieces. They aren’t here yet (but I saw this morning they’ve already been sent), so while I’m waiting I’ve cut out a trial bra and fitted it.

There’s been a growth spurt since the first bra (B? cup, 35″ bust, 29″ ribcage) and I’m now aiming for about a 12D (D cup, 37″ bust, 30″ ribcage).

I added to the original pattern:

The original zero waste bra pattern with changes to make it bigger.
For those of you following along at home who might give this a whirl, I added 1/2″ (1.2cm) as shown to these edges. I think I’ve achieved a 14D which will be made a 12D by smaller ribcage elastic.

The fitting went very well indeed, with a big tick for supportiveness (for the bra, that is, but I try and be supportive parent too).

The neckline needs lowering, but that’s easy – I’ll just angle it lower, back to the original line.

Yellow zero waste bra after first fitting.
The fabric is a good firm cotton lycra. The colour is pronounced: “YELLOW!!!”.
I slid some cups into it from an old bra, but I’ve ordered some the right size.

Lacking elastic for the lower edge, I cut a band 2″ smaller than her ribcage. She really liked it but I suspect it would loose it’s oompf, and elastic would be better long-term.

When the haberdashery arrives, I could make a few changes to this sample and it could be worn.

Til next week,



  1. Sue Stoney on February 27, 2023 at 12:05 pm

    Now this is a pattern I could get behind (no pun intended!). Looking forward to seeing how it goes. I have everything I need so hurry that pattern along.

    • lizhaywood on February 27, 2023 at 12:28 pm

      I’m quietly confident, Sue! The haby’s coming from Sydney and fingers crossed will be here before the weekend.

  2. Helen on February 27, 2023 at 1:07 pm

    Well done, supportive Mum!!!

    • lizhaywood on February 27, 2023 at 2:25 pm

      Cheers, Helen!

  3. Michelle Cahill on February 28, 2023 at 3:02 am

    Heading off to a bra making workshop this weekend and found myself wondering about this pattern a few days ago. I definitely want to try it as a soft bra. Should be comfy.

    • lizhaywood on February 28, 2023 at 9:58 am

      That sounds like a very enjoyable way to spend a weekend!
      I would have like to have delved deeper into more “structural” bra making, but my teen doesn’t like underwires and prefers this sort of soft bra/sports hybrid.

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