I had the absolute best time at the International Bra Sewing Bee! I attended (virtually) for the first time this year. This event has been held for 4 years now by Bra Builders. That being said, I have never heard of it until this year. Bra Builders is actually just 2 hours away from me and a shop that I frequent so I am amazed I hadn’t heard about it sooner.
This is my in progress shot of the Lusamine bra. They had a sew-along that was in video form that you could watch during the bee.
The Bee consistent of 4 days of live classes and teacher/vendor Q&As. The day prior they hosted a mixer where you could break out into groups and share your lingerie makes with other attendees. This was one of my favorite parts! I wish we would have done more interactive things.
The Bee was so inspiring but also exhausting. Several of the days (at least 2 of them) were 14 hours long if you watched all the content! Besides all of the live classes, there are also sew-alongs that you can watch during the Bee.
Here is my finished Lusamine bra. I had some issues with fit but because I could ask questions I was able to get help on how to adjust the pattern to fit.
The Bee was such a great experience, I recommend it to anyone wanted to connect with bra makers and spend days with women who are so passionate about bra making. I haven’t been able to stop thinking about bras since! You also get shop discounts from a few of the shops that were involved in the Bee, including Bra Builders.
Next year they are planning on doing the Bee in the spring and having it be more of a “Mini Bee.” I think a lot of attendees, myself included, found it to be very overwhelming. It was a lot of information to take in and process. You can sign up to have access monthly or yearly as well.
During AFI Atelier’s Q&A she mentioned her free Maya bra pattern so I of course had to download and make that. It turned out to be a great fit for me.
Cons: For me the website was really hard to work with. Finding the schedule was a nightmare. It was in so many places but yet it wasn’t – it was in list form and the actual schedule was hidden. The Mighty Network was great but I felt like it could have been set up more user-friendly then how they had it. Also the Designer and Vendor Q&As were just in a doc and when you clicked the link it didn’t open in a new window. If you didn’t right click it, you’d loose the link and have to dig through the site to find it. I wish there were more interactive things set up as well. I would have loved to connect more with bra makers. I put my Instagram handle in my name on the network, but I wish we could have had a way to share that more and do more activities that were interactive. It didn’t feel like there was much of a community aspect.
Overall, it was 100% worth it and I will be attending the next one. I can’t wait and all I have on my mind is lingerie!
Did you attend the Bra Bee? If you did share your experience in the comments!