Adding Bra Cups to a Herve Leger Dress

getting rid of bra lines hiding bra straps

While we love how Herve Leger molds and shapes the waist and hips, it sometimes can smoosh the boobs. Whether you're small or large chested, a good bra can help how everything looks "up there." But, depending on the style, a traditional bra may not be an option. Here's a tutorial of how I attached bra cups to a Herve Leger dress!

When a traditional or strapless bra just won't work with Herve Leger, you can use other solutions such as the sticky bra, nubra, and low back converter. But, I find these uncomfortable or needing adjustment every now and then. So, I decided to add permanent bra cups to one of my Herve Leger dresses. 

Most Herve Leger dress styles CAN be worn with a traditional strapless bra, and this alteration would not be necessary or recommended. Check out the best strapless bra guide!

plunge back ombre Herve Leger bandage bra straps

Obviously, this dress can't be worn with a traditional bra. Btw, sorry that I did not hook the dress at the top of the zipper; I only had this dress on for a couple of minutes just for demonstration.

Only 2 out of my current HL collection has alterations. Only alter HL if you are comfortable and confident with a needle and thread and feel that the alteration will most definitely benefit the look of the dress. 

I decided to add bra cups to this dress, as this dress is rarely worn in spite of being absolutely gorgeous. Without a bra, it presses boobs down and is not so flattering. I also cannot stand sticky bras and nubras. I'm allergic to the adhesive, and these bras' stickiness wears out fairly quickly. Attaching bra cups to my dress took less than 15 minutes, and now, this dress is way more wearable! :) 

Items needed for alterations

Items you will need for this alteration:

1. Herve Leger clothing that cannot be worn with a regular bra (HL item should have individual banding at the bust. Quite common, examples: here, here, here, and here)
2. 4 safety pins
3. Needle and thread (thread color should match dress)
4. Scissors
5. Fabric bra pads or bra that you don't use
6. Measuring tape (optional)

The bra that was used is a seamless hard shell t-shirt bra with slight push up. It's one that I stupidly bought on sale even though it was the wrong size. Thankfully, it can be put to use! :) Bra cups or a bra can be used. If a bra is used, a light smooth hard shell works the best.

You can also get a seamstress to do this for you professionally, but this alteration is quite simple and quick in my opinion. The drive to the seamstress one way is longer than what it takes to do the alteration. 

STEP 1:

cut the straps off

Take the bra and cut off the straps. Try to choose a light weight bra. You don't want the bra pulling on your dress. 

STEP 2:

align bra to dress

Safety pin the bra to the appropriate spot. Using a measuring tape, make sure that the bra's center is aligned with the center of the dress. Try on the dress with bra pinned to make sure that it is in the appropriate spot.  

STEP 3: 

bra cups on  a dress

Since a bra cup is curved and the dress stretches, only a few points nearest the dress are sewn together. In the picture above, see that each cup is attached at the top left, middle of the cup, and bottom of underwire, with only a few loose stitches at each spot. The edge of individual bands on the inside of the dress have a small portion that is not exposed on the other side.

The bra is attached to only the edge of the bands. Thus, the threading never shows when the dress is worn, and the alteration causes no strain to the construction of the garment. 

Note how the beginning knot and end knot are on the side of the bra and NOT on the side of the dress. This allows the alteration to be easily reversed if desired with little risk to damaging the Herve Leger. 

DONE!

 bra for low plunging back

Here's the final result! My dress has boobs! haha!

getting rid of bra straps

Fantastic! This dress will be worn so much more now! No more worrying about straps! Sorry again, I did not hook at the top.

great tight dress

No more smooshing either! 

Store this dress as you would like any of your other Herve Leger, laid flat! :)

Here's the inspiration and also an example of how bra pads can be used instead of an unused bra:

Herve Leger with bra pads

I bought this beautiful pre-owned Herve Leger quite a while ago. When I received it, I was surprised to see that bra pads were added to the dress. It's the only other Herve Leger that I have currently that has alterations.

bra pads to dress

Lines on the right cup, show where it is attached to the edge of the individual bands. 

Even though the cups are quite thin and simple, the extra structure makes a HUGE improvement and disguises any awful nippage moments. The wearability of the dress is pretty awesome due to the alteration. 

how it's stitched on

If done correctly, the dress can be returned to its original state. Super easy to reverse the alteration!

This was a topic that I've chatted with readers about privately. I hope that this tutorial has been helpful! For another alteration tutorial, check out: how to shorten a Herve Leger