Tuesday 21 February 2023

Annual swimwear sewathon - part 2

At Christmas time I wore an older, non-me-made pair of swimmers to the pool and the leg elastic made that crackling pinging sound that elastic makes when it has lost the will to live.

Time for some new me-made swimmers then! I hadn't quite hit the jackpot with my previous efforts. The bottoms of any two piece I'd tried were weirdly oversized and the one-pieces just weren't quite right either. Oddly, for all the Jalie swimsuits I'd made the kids I'd not yet tried one for me. Not being sure which to try, I made three different patterns.

First up is Jalie 3134. I've made this one quite a few times for A and always really liked the shape of it.

The full glare, squint into the sun photo isn't the best, but my attempts at action shots weren't much better...

Or bathroom selfies, but at least this shows the pattern lines better...

Love how these ones stay put regardless of the activity. Good leg hole that doesn't result in a wedgie, nor feel overly clunky and low. I really like the panels that allow for colour blocking and probably need more contrast than my camouflage black/grey and black. I fully lined both the front and the lower back (back lining was additional to the pattern instructions) and it's got a good amount of the firm, squish factor.
The piping effect is kinda fun and done with a thin strip of fabric that's stretched in order to cause it to roll and then zig zag stitched over the top of.
There are no closures on this one, so it's easy to make, if not slightly harder to get in and out of. Will definitely make again.

The second pair were certainly pretty in a flat lay:

These are Jalie 3350, view A. Again, I've made this pattern quite a few times for A and always liked the look of it. It's less "sporty" than the kind of swimwear pattern I gravitate towards.

I made the same straight size that I'd measured at, but in this pattern I think I need a smaller size above than below. The bust section feels slightly loose and unsupported. Sure I could put swim bra cups in there but I suspect that might add padding and weight, and I'm still not going to get anywhere near cleavage-ville unless the straps are hoicked up super tight.

The leg cut on this one is lower than I like. It's at the height that most swimwear has been for the last ten years or so, but I have an eighties idea of where a leg hole should sit that can't be budged.

I think this is the only photo of me wearing them. Again, I lined the back lower half (not in the pattern). the fabric is a lovely matte lycra and it matched quite well with a bit of Carvico Vita solid that was in the stash. I should get more photos if only to show off my pattern matching cutting!

Definitely wearable, and not a bad pair of swimmers. However, I'm not sure I'd make this one again as I 'd want to redraft the leg, and make sizing adjustments to the top half that might be more trouble than it's worth. I guess cute swimmers might not be for me.

Finally, I found myself in Rathdowne Fabrics and decided a large scale floral print lycra would need to come home with me to make one last pair...

These ones are certainly my favourites.

The pattern is Jalie 0969 which is only available as a PDF and that I'd made in both views for A previously.

These were a really easy sew, and I'd purchased the fabric in the morning and made the swimsuit by dinnertime. This time I just followed the pattern instructions and only used a bit of lining in the gusset. No front or back full lining. I suspect I'll wear them until they wear out and I hope someone is kind enough to let me know before the back fabric gets too see through!

When I was at Rathdowne Fabrics they had these hats for $2 each. Apparently they'd been accidentally shipped as part of a haberdashery order, odd right?! Anyway I thought it looked good with the fabric and it was really well made and adjustable. Perfect river hat.

This is definitely my favourite pattern for me at the moment, with 3134 in a very close second place. I fully intend to check every leg cut against this pattern in future.

Tuesday 14 February 2023

Catching up and the annual swimwear sewathon - part 1 Jalie 4013

Oh I have got so far behind in documenting things here that the whole purpose of the blog (what size? how much extra sleeve length?) is at risk of being completely lost.

The hurdle has been some unphotographed, or poorly photographed, outfits and the feeling that things should be documented in order. Hang that. Let's start playing catch up....

The annual swimwear sewathon was directed by A who declared she wanted the swimmers that have a rashie on top and swimmer bottoms. I toyed briefly with the idea of mashing a leotard and a swimsuit pattern but then remembered Jalie had exactly the pattern I was after. I just didn't own it yet...  Easily fixed. Jalie 4013 - Zoe to the rescue (hard copy shipped promptly, and on sale, from Seamstress Fabrics)

The size was as per her measurements (R from memory?) with 1" of length front and back. This is the same mistake I made with our Bowie skinsuits: If the torso loop measurement is 1" longer than the pattern then only 1/2 and inch is needed to be added to each pattern piece to result in 1" extra overall. So maybe they're a little longer in the body than required, but at least that means they should fit next summer.

The fabrics were all stashed swimsuit fabrics. The camo fabric was divided up between both kids and myself. the plastic zippers came from Jimmy's Buttons' where Jimmy hunted out exactly the zippers I needed and then shortened them for me. Of course the pattern sizing was such that they should have been shorter still (shortened when sewn), but I just made them finish lower than intended and worked around them being the length they were.

I'd just bought myself a coverstitch machine and between a little bit of sewing machine for the zipper, a whole lot of overlocking for the seams, back to the sewing machine to zig zag attach the elastic and then on to the coverstitch to finish the elastic - I had a real workshop vibe going on. Fun times.

I backed the tension waaaaaay down on the lower looper thread of the coverstitch and used woolly nylon in the lower looper thread. Worked a treat. I banged out these two swimsuits for A and then three for myself in the week leading up to our January holidays. Easier than shopping and the sweatshop conditions are pretty sweet.