How to Add a Padded Shelf Bra


I don’t have huge knockers.

In fact, I very happily have the “sport edition” of boobs. But, I do still require padding because all boobs have nips. Big boobs, small boobs. Nipples don’t care. And I do like keeping mine from making frequent appearances.

I modified this Jalie 3247 pattern to have built in padding rather than inserts.

Why? Well…

  1. High neckline sports bras are notorious for allowing inserts to float all over the place. So, you could go from looking like you have a uni-boob to three boobs to a boob by your neck and another one under your arm pit!
  2. Creating separated pockets for inserts became too bulky. (So if you have the trick for this, please do share!)

The following tutorial shows how I added a built-in shelf bra with very light padding.


  1. Identify the front pattern piece. 1
  2. Cut out a lining piece that covers the breast area.2
  3. Mark the centerline of the newly cut piece. 3
  4. Make a mark 1/2″ away from the centerline. Repeat this for the other side of the centerline. This measurement depends on the distance between your beasts and the size of your pads. If you don’t have those measurements, simply fit the cups to your body and measure. For my case, my pads are approximately 5″ wide. A distance of 1″ total between the pads (i.e. 1/2″ on either side of the centerline) would allow for sufficient coverage of my boobs’n’nips. 4
  5. The band of this pattern requires 3/4″ elastic. But, I used 3/8″ instead (because I never have all the supplies I need). Depending on your band elastic, make a mark vertically from the bottom of the pattern that is twice the size of the band elastic. 5
  6. Based on your marks from steps 4 and 5, align the innermost side or corner of your cups with those marks. Pin your cups in place. 6.png
  7. Zig-zag stitch the cups to the lining piece. 7.png8.png
  8. Turn the lining and cups over. Release the tension on the cups by trimming away the material inside the zig-zag stitches. 9.png10.png
  9. Finally, layer your new shelf bra over the wrong side of the shell (I used Phee’s white circular knit as the shell). 11.png

I made this sports bra and panty set as the base for a Leeloo costume (from The Fifth Element).

Untitled design

But, even though you may not want to be an orange-haired action figure, you’ve GOT TO GET THIS CIRCULAR KNIT BECAUSE IT IS THE SOFTEST THING IN THE WORLD! (Besides labradoodle puppies)


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The Easiest Hack for Panty-Pizazz

It has taken me 32 years to accept a truth that I’ve fought so hard to reject. And…that truth is:


Sad face. Because of my shortness, I am picky about my panty and bikini patterns. In fact, I’ve become so irrationally picky that I now draft my own. So, the pattern that I will be using to demonstrate this super easy hack is my own self drafted sport’kini pattern.

BUT! Fret not my dears! This pattern hack is so easy that you can apply it to almost any basic panty or bikini pattern block.

Have I piqued your interest, yet? You’re probably asking yourself, “What the eff is this short chick talking about!?”

Well today, I am going to show you how you can alter any panty/bikini block to incorporate contrast hip panels.

For my hip panels, I used Phee Fabrics camo powernet. The body of the panty is composed of leftover Phee supplex (which is absolutely luscious!). The crotch lining is actually Phee’s nude swimwear lining.




Easy Pattern Hack Tutorial:

Pictured below is my simple bikini block. I chose this pattern over other available panty patterns because 1. I’m short and it fits my shortness, and 2. although I am a shameless VPL (visible panty line) offender, I prefer this cheeky cut because it doesn’t split my glutes into weird sections. But, again, this hack can be applied to any basic panty/bikini pattern!


The first step is to choose how you would like to split up your pattern. For the sake of variation, I’ll show different dimensions than what I actually used for my panty.

So, from the centerline of your front panty pattern, measure and mark a point 1.5″ away from the centerline and above the waistband. Then, about a third of the way down your front panty pattern, measure and mark a point 2″ away from the centerline.

Note: These numbers are truly arbitrary. Just make sure that your second mark is outside of the body of the pattern.

Connect the two points and separate the pieces.


Then, add seam allowances to your cut edges. I typically work with 3/8″ seam allowances, but you could use anywhere between 1/4″ to 5/8″.


Simple so far, right? The final step is to repeat for the back piece:


Et Voila!

Easy peasy! This simple hack is a great way to add variety and pizazz to your panty or bikini collection! Try it out. And, don’t be afraid to be daring! I still have quite a bit of camo powernet left, so I definitely want to try this hack by making the solid pieces smaller.

But, for now, this pair is perfect and comfy for my workouts! And I feel like they kind of match my favorite shirt:


Yes, I’m 32 years old and this Ninja Turtles shirt is still my favorite 🙂