Friday, March 30, 2012

Swimsuit Contest -- I Made It!!

 After a month of barely any sewing at all, I managed to get most of the evening free last night to work on my entry for the Pattern Review Swimsuit Contest.  Just in time to beat tomorrow's deadline.

Whew!  I traced the pattern before dinner last night, and started cutting and then sewing at about 9pm.  At 12:10, I was zigzagging the very last bit of elastic in place.  Three hours from start to finish.  Not bad.  Not bad at all.  And the result is very nice indeed.

I used the new Jalie swimsuit pattern 3134, and since Jalies usually fit me pretty well, I took a chance and just made my usual size: the smallest Women's size, which in this case was an R.

 I didn't have any muslin fabric anyway, but when I saw what a tiny bit of fabric this swimsuit took, my trepidation faded away like frost in sunlight.  Out of a 1 yard piece of the orange and a 1 yard piece of the gray, I have enough left over to make at least 2 or 3 more suits.  Which I probably will, with different color block combinations.

The orange floral I bought from my favorite fabric source,  They didn't have any solid colors when I was shopping, though, so I had to break down and get the gray from JoAnn's.  The gray is a bit shinier than I was looking for, but it was the best I could do  :o/  It's also lighter weight than the orange, and I kind of wished I'd lined the back as well, just for a little more structure.

The tracing of the pattern was a little interesting, since there are 6 pieces that make up this suit, and I managed to leave off a couple of rather important notches when I traced.  Minor problem, easily solved.

And sewing that slippery fabric was a real treat, too.  The orange is a far better quality and so was much easier to sew than the gray.  I basted the edges of the front fabric and lining together (as per the instructions) but not any of the other pieces, since I found it was actually easier to sew the pieces together if they weren't.  Counter-intuitive, I know.  Maybe I'm just weird.

I will say, though, that all those pieces went together beautifully.  And I thought the instructions were excellent.  I did download and print them from Jalie's website rather than try to read them from the giant pattern sheet.

I really like the way this looks on the inside, too.  All the elastic is neatly tucked away and stitched flat.  Looks very professionally done.

I like everything about this swimsuit.  The only thing I might change next time around is making the straps about an inch or so longer.  I think this suit might be a bit more comfortable if there is just a little more length to it. 

I really needed something to wear while kayaking and this swimsuit perfectly fits the bill.  It's pretty comfortable, has good coverage, the t-straps won't slide off my shoulders (and the more I kayak, the more sloped my shoulders get), and it's pretty, too.

I just ordered some pink floral nylon/lycra for Daughter (it has to be pink, ya know -- and from, of course) so I'll be making one for her, too.  I'll probably lengthen her straps as well, since that long torso kinda runs in the family.


  1. These look so comfortable and like they will stay in place...perfect for kayaking, surfing and all those other times when you actually want to swim in your swimmers. Looks like a great pattern. Love the orange floral. Great job.

  2. This looks like a great fit on you Trinity. And only three hours of sewing is a bonus.