From the first time I saw the Lengberg Castle underwear I knew that I would want to make something similar. Having big breasts complicates things, I would prefer not to wear modern bras with my medieval clothes. But there is no chance that I can get away with not wearing anything at all. The fitted front dresses might work, but I prefer to use ease in my garments and I am not all that fond of the shape my breasts would get in that kind of fitted underwear.
So the Lengberg Castle brassiere was perfect, it is just like a modern bra, but with more coverage and in linen.
There are quite a few interesting articles on the net already, you should check them out in stead of me trying to communicate what they are about.
Medieval supportive underwear at Medieval Silkwork
Supportive underwear in written sources at Medieval Silkwork
About medieval bra(shirt)s and other underwear by Isis Sturtewagen
The “Invention” of Needle-lace in East Tyrol? – University of Innsbruck
I used a lot of needles and draped this pattern on my self wearing my regular bra. It is really hard to drape on yourself so I recommend that you get a friend to help you. But after a evening of contortionism I had a pattern.
It might be the silliest looking pattern I have ever made.
One of my favourite things to do is actually sewing eyelets, my brassiere have 6-7 at each side and is spiral laced.
The lacing I used is lucet braided wool.
The result is this, the seams are made with felled seams that are placed on the outside, to make it as smooth as possible for the skin.
It feels good to wear. I wore it for a full day in school and the only thing was that the bottom edge raised up under my bust but I will be attaching a skirt to and that might fix that problem. Also, My breast went kind of droopy with not as much lift as I am used to with my modern bra at the end of the day. But the linen I worked with is really thin and I will make a try with some sturdier linen and that might keep them up and happy all day. But it was really comfy even if they “sank” in height during the day.
This pattern is made after my body, so a mock up is very important. But I thought that there is always nice to see how the pattern looks, as a starting point for your own pattern.
I wear a European size 80H according to the label in my bra that is a 95H in France and 36H in UK, sorry you US ladies but I have no idea what that translates to. But my body measurements are: Bust 120cm and underbust 96cm.
As usual my pattern diagrams are in cm
My other posts about the Lengberg Castle brassiere.
Lengberg Castle brassiere – It works
Lengberg Castle brassiere – comparison
43 thoughts on “Lengberg Castle brassiere”
I love this! And I’m so thrilled to see it on a larger bust. It looks wonderfully crafted, and very comfy. Thank you so much for sharing your results. I believe that you would be a 42DD here in the US.
This is so cool! I really love the hand sewn eyelets you made too!
I also have a big bust 32FF and would advise broader straps for maximum comfort. Regency short stays are also very comfortable; like a little waistcoat which pushes breast up and in. Great article
80H is a 36G in the US. This is really cool, thank you for posting it!
I think this looks amazing! I’ve seen another one out there, but yours looks so much more realistic. I agree that a heavier linen would probably help the drooping. Also, the pictures I’ve seen of the extant examples kind of make it look like the bottom might be longer on the body- adding an inch and fully lining the the linen of the base part would probably keep it from flipping up and would also help with the drooping.
The fitted gown, I am a US 42G, fits your body does not make you look like you have 1 bosom and is very comfortable, I suggest looking at Cotte Simple and trying with friends the step by step to get the fitting correct!
Is there any way I have have a pattern printed and sent to me? I an not any good at trying to use a grid to make a pattern.
Thank you so much for posting this bra pattern! I have the same band size as you but I’m about 3 cup sizes larger. I have been scouring the internet for a pattern that would actually support me and not make me so pointy. I am going to convert mine into a nursing bra so this is just so awesome!!
so going to try this!!! It looks comfy, once you find a sturdy enough linen.
How did you get the measurements for the breast holes? I would love to make this.
I got the measurements by draping. I cut the front piece with a small hole in the middle of where my breast should be, Put it on my body and then I cut the hole bigger and bigger until the front piece sat against my body nicely and good around my breast. It is easiest to have a friend to help you but it works to do it on front of a mirror as I did.
@Cathrin Thank you for letting me know. I cannot wait to make this!
I saw this when they found it on the internet, & thought that I really would like one. This is just great that you figured it out! Now all I have to do is grade it to my own size. Or you could make it up as a pattern with notes on how to adjust it to ones own size! I think that adding the skirt will make it just that much more wearable! So great!
You are an amazing young women, and what an interesting variety of projects.
I used your corset pattern, it is very easy to follow.
Next is this weird boob holder!!
This is amazing! Love it! I am going to try this. I really hate wearing a corset, and a modern bra just falls short of the right look. I was truly amazed at the differance between the two pictures. I would never thought that a big bust could look that good in the Lengberg bra. I love your blogs, please keep it up. Lady Cate of Artemisia/ a long time recreationist
Oh, thank you for posting this fantastic tutorial and pattern!
I wish more medieval-based fantasy would use something like this. It’s so annoying when they try to use bras or underwear that look like string bikinis. It’s also interesting how this looks somewhat similar to a bullet bra, in that it doesn’t try to add cleavage via cups and it’s more full-coverage.
Wow. Thank you!
Your before and after pictures convinced me. I always suspected that corsets weren’t always the way to go! Thank You for sharing this with us! Too bad we can’t get the bra companies to make some of these,lol.
You are awesome, and just happen to be about my size! woohoo having a decent place to start from and then working from there! I am so excited to have a starting place that is nearly right! US size 36G
You said something about adding a skirt. I’ve been looking at the Lengberg bra myself, and it’s compared to a 1950s long line bra. When you constructed this, you didn’t bring the bottom to your natural waist line. I think this is why you had issues. The Lengberg finding has fabric going down to the waist. You were still modeling your’s after a modern bra, which wouldn’t work in this case. It’s just a thought. :)
Oh me oh my, we are the same size. I’m right at the beginning of joining a Viking re-enactment society near here and was dreading dressing up without the girls being contained. It may not be perfectly historically accurate for Vikings from 600-900AD but close enough. Thank you so very much for this. :)
Just found this! Very excited. Will be making one this long weekend. Thanks for sharing. Great photos.
I love this, I’m considering making a bra to wear around the house since it is a lot more comfortable to wear natural fibres instead of synthetics for me.
When I wear my store bought bras out I always end up with red sweaty welts around my ribcage when I get home.
I looked it up its a 36 F in US size.
I love this, thanks for the pattern! I would like to make one to wear under my XIVth cottehardie. I can’t figure out how the lucette lace begins and ends? It look like there a knot at the beginnig (how do you make to prevent the knot from slipping out of the eyelet?) and the end goes around the torso (to what is it tied to?)
An also, how do you finish edges: bias tape? Hem?
Many thanks in advance :) I made a St Brigitta’s cap from your pattern, very succesfully!
Hello, in other post about this brasserie you wore “underwear skirt”. Did you use some pattern or was it you interpretation/imagination? I’m new into medieval reenactment :)
Oh thank you for this pattern! I have always struggled with bras. And trying to make one has been a freight for me. This looks very simple. Do you have any problems with the shoulder straps? The store bought ones always dig into my shoulders.
Excellent tutorial. thanks for this idea.
For the drooping i would just sew a demi cup in the bottom that will give you lift
I’m finally trying this and yes, it is the silliest looking thing I have ever laid out on the dining table!!! One question, what reinforces the lacing edge? It seems like they will want to bunch up…. ??? Clearly your lie flat in the picture, but how?
Can’t wait to try this out here in the blazing heat! It’s like reenacting I’m the fires of hell – the more I can wear out of linen, the better. Thank you for this beautiful website!!
If you made a paper patterns in standard sizes I would be first in line to buy one!