Hello again, friends! I'm back with another project made using the patterns sent to me by Perfect Pattern Parcel from Parcel #3. Sewing a swimsuit has been a secret goal of mine ever since I saw the one Miriam made (I've been a long time fan of hers) so when I saw the Bombshell Swimsuit pattern in the patterns sent to me I took it as a sign and worked up the courage to give it a go. It didn't hurt that the design is exactly my style- in fact, I already own a swimsuit that could be mistaken for a Bombshell that I LOVE but doesn't fit my current hip size. Anybody else feel like they need at least four different wardrobes through the childbearing years?? Swimsuits just don't bridge the gap between pre-pregnancy and postpartum like other clothes can. They either fit or they don't. Too loose and it's hanging off and dragging in the water, too tight and it hurts! That's the plight I'm in this summer- I've got a great suit that is too tight to bear, and a great suit that is hanging off of me. We've got an awesome pool close by and two girls who love water, so dealing with an ill fitting suit just aint gonna cut it this summer! Enter, my Gingham Bombshell:
The Fabric: I found this gingham swim fabric and Hancock Fabrics. The gingham fits the retro style to a T. When I got to the cut counter they told me it was 90% off- $1.69 a yard!! So I bought extra, because that's what one does when one finds such a deal, yes? And now... I don't know, I really don't NEED another red gingham swimsuit. Hmm. I used a nude swim lining also from Hancock, and cotton swim elastic from Hobby Lobby.
The Pattern: I chose the halter version, obviously. The pattern mentioned that this offered more support, and since my swimsuit is used for splashing and playing rather than sunbathing I need all the support I can get, haha! Truth be told, this is the lowest cut swimsuit I've ever worn, so for comforts sake I decreased the gap between the cups. That's the great thing about sewing though, isn't it? Making those little adjustments that make it work for you?
I graded between a size 10 on top to a 12 on bottom, based on bad measurements that I took over my clothes, so I had to adjust the fit once it was assembled. I just took it in on the side seams, making sure to keep my gathers consistent, and it worked out spendidly. I re-measured (sans clothes) and should have sewn a 8/10. Spoiler alert: I'm making another in that size (should be ready to share next week!) and the muslin I made from the lining fits, with a slight adjustment for my child-size rib cage. Can't wait!
The only other adjustment I made was inserting some soft cups from an old swimsuit. The suit itself does give all the support I need (and I'm a C cup) but sometimes you just want a little extra coverage, you know what I'm saying?
I'm THRILLED with the way this pattern came together. I didn't have any issues with the fabric on either my regular machine or my serger. The sew-along perfectly explained every step so I was never confused, and the suit is just so so flattering. The front panel covers exactly what I want it to- less frumpy than a full skirt, but covers that awkward thigh/crotch area so well. I've already worn it to the beach and the pool and it performed well and got compliments everywhere I went! The best part? I FEEL good in it!! And that, folks, is why I sew!
Can we talk for a minute about this photoshoot? You guys. How do you do a swim photoshoot and not look like a spectacle? I'm pretending I'm outside an awesome lakehouse here, but truth be told I'm in an empty lot next to my neighbors house, wearing a swimsuit, and posing while my husband takes pictures. Sorry, neighbor man who happened upon us while feeding the feral neighborhood cats. You got a little more than you bargained for that day. Snaps for my husband, who got the awkward job of taking the awkward photos in front of said neighbor. You rock.