a pair & a spare

apairandasparediy.com · Nov 1, 2013


As some of you will have noticed I’m going through a bit of a bralette / crop top phase (DIY ones here and here), worn under blazers with high waisted skirts or palazzo trousers. As soon as I saw this amazing Alexander Wang style on Nicole Richie I knew it was something I would have to try to make myself. Trouble was, I had no idea where to start. I ended up taking an afternoon out and playing around until I got it (kinda) right. There was a lot of trial and error, particularly getting the cup shape jussssst so, but I think it worked out ok! Although, before you ask, clearly not the sort of thing you would wear to a job interview…

You need:

  • Some black fabric, I used fabric that was like thin neoprene, good for giving you support and also great because you don’t have to hem the edges if you don’t want to (yay!).
  • Scissors
  • Thread
  • Sewing Machine
  • Template

How to:

1. Start by making the cups of your top. Below you can see a very simple template of the left cup (print to scale on A4 paper). For each cup you will make a two triangles with curved sides. Once you sew the curved edges together you will get the rounded cup shape. The template has been made to fit my size which is why I would suggest you print it out and play around with some scraps of fabric before committing to a shape. Everyone is different so once you’ve made it using scraps trim the cups or make then bigger depending on your requirements. The dotted lines show where you will pin them together.

2. Create two sets of these. Note that the template above is for the left cup, so for the right cup you should turn the template onto the wrong side and trace that onto your fabric so your cups end up being mirror images of each other. Then cut the base fabric to suit, matching to the width of your back.

3. Pin the curved edges together.

4. Sew together.

5. Pin and then sew the cups to the top edges of the base fabric.

6. It should (hopefully) look like this.

7. Then sew the elastic on as the straps, matching to the right size of my shoulders. I sewed the elastic all the way down the sides of the triangles onto the base fabric so it gave extra lift.

8. The final step is to secure the back. I used an exposed zip to do this, pinning to the outside of the fabric and sewing down.

Voila! You may have noticed I didn’t sew the edges of the triangles, I didn’t have to because of the fabric I used (great for lazy people like me!), but if you use fabric that frays more I would definitely hem the edges. Just remember to add a little more around the edges of your triangles when you are cutting them to allow for this.

As with any cropped piece like this that shows a lot of skin, I like to pair it with a longer skirt or a slouchy blazer to play down the look so it’s not so in your face. Happy DIYing!

First and last images by Sabrina Sikora.

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