May 31, 2012

making a swimsuit: mission (sort of) accomplished

Remember the swimsuit I was planning on making for the "I Will Wear it in Public" sewing challenge that ends May 31?  Well I finished my suit last night and am posting about it May 31--nothing like waiting until the last possible minute.  The rules of the challenge:

  1. The theme of this challenge is to sew any garment that YOU will be proud enough to wear in public. 
  2. This is a sewing challenge so machine or hand sewing is a required element in your entry.
  3. You must make a new garment for this challenge.  
  4. Upcycling and refashioning of existing garments is acceptable and long as you follow the second guideline.
  5. Don't confuse garments with accessories like hats, scarves, belts, etc.
  6. You must try something new when creating your garment.  That's where the "challenge" part comes into play, right?  Maybe you've never used a pattern, or sewn with knits, or installed a zipper.  Here's your chance!
  7. It's not mandatory, but please take a few minutes to get know your fellow participants.  Check out their blogs, facebook pages, pinterest boards, etc.  We're all in this together so let's show some support!
The new things I tried while making my swimsuit:
  1. Making a swimsuit. :)
  2. Modifying/altering an existing commercial pattern.
  3. Sewing with spandex/swimwear fabric.
  4. Using sew-in elastic.
  5. Using sew-in breast cups which I just now realized after looking at the picture on the box that I sewed the stupid things in UPSIDE DOWN!
  6. Using my serger for something other than finishing the raw edges of fabric before I pre-wash it.
  7. Using a twin needle for hemming and sewing down the elastic--it worked amazingly well!
Overall, I'm pretty happy with how it turned out.  It took three tries, but I finally made a pair of bottoms that fit well.  If I make another suit, I'd make the bottoms a smidge bigger in the butt and a bit narrower between the legs.  The top fits fairly well, but it's got some issues.  I'd like more gathering across the front (it just looks wrinkled and not gathered), and I really don't care for how the bust area looks.  (Do you think sewing the breast cups in upside down has anything to do with that?)  If I make another suit, I'd probably try a different style top that is more flattering to my (non-existant) figure.  But it's done!  Now, time to pack up the spandex and get back to quilting. :)  And I can't believe I'm doing this, but here are pictures of me in my homemade swimsuit.
Okay, it doesn't look too bad from the back. 

Hmm, the top could use some adjustments.
Sorry for the poorly lit indoor pictures.  It's cloudy and only 50 degrees today!


  1. great job!!!! You are a brave woman for taking this challenge on!!

  2. I'm totally impressed!! I love the fabric you chose. Good for you to stick with it.

  3. I think it looks great--swimsuits are nearly impossible to make! Perhaps a more "sweetheart" neckline would improve the top? Amazing coverage that you can't find in a store, that's for sure!!

  4. I love it! The fit is great and that's the hardest part when working with small pieces of stretchy fabric. Bravo my dear!

  5. LOL! I reread the breast cup part! Oh that's so unfortunate, but so funny! Thanks for sharing!

  6. Awesome steph, well-done with your swimsuit, the finishing is beautiful :)

  7. amazing job! I don't think I'd be brave enough to try a bathing suit, you did a great job & it looks great!

  8. It's just amazing you decided to take on this challenge and be willing to do it three times to get it right. And it looks great. I'm pretty sure your next one will be even better :)

  9. am sure your next swimsuit is gonna be exactly as you want it! you are the most valiant, girl!!!!!! good work!

  10. You've done an awesome job, Steph!!! I agree with Duff's comment about the sweetheart neckline. That's the only thing I'd change and perhaps sewing the breast cups in the right way...LOL!!! You've made a very wearable swimsuit and I love the colours!!! If you can sew a swimsuit, you can sew anything...