I used Jan Bones, Lingerie Secrets, "Sewing & Information Package Book: by Jan Bones" which contains a pattern for bra cups and tons of FABULOUS info on bras, liners, and even prosthesis pockets. Jan is one of my favorite designers. She's so thoughtful and practical in every design. I took the bra cup pattern, graded it up to a G cup and made the cups using a bra foam from Sew Sassy.
Then, I used the instructions in the Princess Tankini pattern from the Fairy Bra Mother for adding swim cups to your bra liner. Frankly, I don't know why I was afraid. It was so much easier and more fun than I could have imagined. And, grading up meant the cups actually fit my body rather than showing up as cups in the lining and the round spots being WAY too small. When they're too small it's like, "Hi - yes, I am wearing foam - do you like my circles?" Jeez.
When we got all said and done, the length of the straps on this pattern is WAY too long for me. I may have been able to fix it using a lot less elastic rather than a 1:1 ratio with the fabric. I'll need to take out like 4-6" of strap length and then it might work.
In addition, I need to grade out at the hips because there are lots of weird wrinkles around the middle.
Lastly, I don't like sewing my bra band elastic to the pattern because it produces weird puckers and pulling. So, I will probably revise how it's done to avoid the divot which occurs right at the side seam where the bra meets.
The bottoms fit beautifully. Even better than I could have imagined.
Overall, I'm pretty happy with this pattern. Extremely happy with the bra cups. I think I'll try my favorite mashup dance top with these bra cups.
Now on to the next swim suit!