Slowly but surely I have come to the end of my stays making project! Starting it in August of 2021, I have finished it in February of 2022. How naive I was to think it would take but a month or two to complete! I will have a “completed project” post up shortly to summarize everything, with good photos too.
I did end up having to slightly increase the size of the darts which I inserted next to the cups. The strap length ended up being the 12 mark on the original pattern piece, quite far off from my original estimate (9 1/2 I think?). The strap eyelets were done in a jiff, as I’ve gotten quite good at them doing so many.
While one can entirely machine sew the edge binding, I always find that machine topstitching of binding looks terrible (at least when I do it!) This may be because I do not have one of those special feet for applying binding, so my typical procedure is to machine sew the outside (wrong sides together) and then hand sew the inside. For these stays I found that completing the bottom edge binding first made the rest of the binding more difficult than it needed to be. When you sew the second binding (whether top or bottom), all the bones are inserted. The top edge binding is much longer, and being more curvy, requires a lot of rotation of the stays while working, both in the machine and hand. If you are doing this with the bones inserted it is very cumbersome and if your boning is reed, like mine, it might get snapped. I would recommend sewing the top edge binding first, then inserting the bones and doing the easier and more straightforward bottom edge second.
Even after switching to the lighter-weight plain weave lining fabric for the strap bias binding, it didn’t lie completely flat at the tips of the straps but it was much better than before.