Hey Hart’s readers!
My name is Rachel and I’m the sewing blogger/podcaster over at Maker Style. Today I’m going to be sharing a project I’ve been dying to make for a really long time: my very own bikini!
I had wanted to make my own bathing suit for a while, because like most people, I have a pretty complicated relationship with swimwear. I’ve always struggled to find something that was flattering on my column-y body, substantial enough that it wouldn’t fall off while jumping in the water, but still a little playful/flirty looking.
I can’t tell you WHY this is an impossible combination of things to find at the mall, but please let me assure you it is.
So for years, I’ve just settled on wearing the same one piece I’ve had kicking around in the back of my drawer and hating it a little every time I put it on.
Does this sound familiar to anyone else?
Once I learnt the basics of bra and underwear making sewing up my own swimsuit was next on the list. After all, being able to make my own suit seemed like the logical solution to this problem.
The only thing in my way? Finding the right swim fabric.
Sewing your own bathing suit isn’t complicated, but it does require having fabric that’s appropriate for swimming. This can be hard to find locally, so I was pretty excited to see that Hart’s stocks everything I would need for this project - swim lining, swim elastic, and an awesome selection of both solid and printed swim fabrics.
In all honesty, it was hard selecting just one option for this project. I eventually chose this navy gingham print because I thought the classic pattern would always be on-trend, plus it’s a little retro and cute! Close runner ups included this colourful blue print and using all-white. So many options!
Once I had selected this fabric I needed to find a pattern. I debated between adjusting one of my tried and true bra and underwear patterns, but the new Mimi Bikini from Evie La Luve had really caught my eye. I liked how the top had a really thick, substantial band running around the bottom to keep it in place while enjoying the outdoors (who here HATES worrying about their bikini top staying in place? I do!).
I had the pleasure of testing this pattern and it was a HUGE success. After taking these pictures I went for a little swim in the river and ran around playing frisbee without any budging, so I consider this top a major success for rambunctious beach goers. Sometimes these more “activity-friendly” bikini tops look more like a sports bra, but the cut outs really keep the fun, beachy vibe.
The bottoms are nice, too, but are certainly not the star of the show. I think this particular style of bottoms would look really cute on someone who has a more hourglass or pear-shaped figure, but aren’t my favourite style for my more column-y body. I plan to update this set with a new set of bottoms using the universally-flattering Frankie Panty pattern, also by Evie la Luve. If you suspect you might prefer a different pair of bottoms too, you can purchase just the top part of the pattern separately.
Despite not loving the bottoms on my body, I still consider this make a huge success. First of all, the top fits me perfectly. Plus, it’s the perfect blend between style and functionality. No more endlessly tugging my top into place or praying it doesn’t slide off on a water slide.
Secondly this fabric makes me smile. I love how classic and feminine this gingham is, and the navy colour looks great on everyone. Gingham is great, there’s no two ways about it!
But lastly, I consider this make a huge success because sewing my own bikini has been a huge confidence booster. Knowing that I was able to tackle a project I used to be intimidated by makes me really proud! Plus, it’s hard not to feel great at the beach while wearing me made.
With this being said, I would like to end this post by saying if you’ve been considering making your own bathing suit, there’s no better time to do it! Evie la Luve has some great instructional videos on her youtube channel to help walk you through the process and you can get all the supplies you need here at Harts. Plus, if if you’ve been eyeing some Evie La Luve patterns, Hart’s will be stocking some of the print versions soon.
Happy swimming and happy sewing!