Sewing Swimwear, The In-Depth How to Sew a Swimming Costume

Sewing Swimwear, The In-Depth How to Sew a Swimming Costume


Sewing Swimwear Swimwear Sewing Patterns from angelakane.com Here is a selection of swimming costumes
I have made up from my Sewing Pattern Number 206 The secret to making great swimming costumes
is to buy the right sort of fabric and to learn appropriate sewing techniques Choosing the right stitch for stretch and appearance
is the key Here I have used a cover stitch machine but I will show you that you can achieve identical
results on a sewing machine, using a twin needle The double stitching encases the elastic
around the leg edges and gives a really neat finish and the gusset lining is also neatly encased There are some wonderful prints available for swimwear You can’t go wrong with stripes and spots for the beach Of course plains will always be popular I like this chocolate brown The back here is cut higher than the pattern You can also make it a lot lower if you like And of course black
Everyone needs a black swimming costume So get yourself some great swimwear fabric
and try out my classic Swimming Costume Pattern This is a PDF Sewing Pattern
for angelakane.com members Swimming costumes look great
made up with contrasting fabrics Look for coordinated prints These dots would be wonderful for a two piece I will be adding two piece swimwear patterns soon I love this geometric print I’ve been a fan of this shade of green for a while and this will go well with garments
I already have in my collection Lycra is probably the most used fabric for swimwear It is seriously stretchy but it is also flattering
as it holds you in and gives you good shaping Lycra stretches the same amount in both directions and it usually stretches to a maximum of 1½ times Test your fabric by picking up a single layer
in the middle not along an edge If you measure 12” it will stretch to 18” and again across the fabric Make sure you are testing along the straight grain This geometric print is a good guide for a grain line The maximum stretch is the same This colour is delicious
I’m looking forward to making it up One metre or one yard of fabric is ample
for all sizes and in the most of the usual widths You’ll probably have some over in the width
to make accessories Here is my Sewing Pattern Number 206 You can download it in sizes 6-22 and it’s very easy
to print on A4 or Letter sized paper Always print off the test page first and measure the grid which must be 1”x1” measuring across the whole page This pattern has just three pieces Then comes the pattern itself My patterns really are the easiest you will find online Because I draft separate layouts for both A4 and Letter you won’t find those annoying lining up marks Just butt the pages together There is no trimming and very little waste each size is drafted separately as well Columns have numbers and rows have letters Use some weights and tape together It takes less than five minutes
to assemble an Angela Kane PDF Sewing Pattern So here is the complete sewing pattern This pattern has the seam allowance included If you prefer to work with a net pattern
then just cut along the stitching lines So here are the three pieces The Gusset Lining, the Back Piece and the Front You can modify the back neckline
Make it very low for the beach or higher for serious swimming Because of the nature of Lycra the length of this pattern is reduced
to 85% of the true body measurement The gusset lining is cut without seam allowance When the back and front are stitched together
at the crotch seam The gusset lining is basted in place and is neatly encased
in the seam allowance of the leg We can now cut out the fabric I have laid out my pieces across the width I use weights rather than pins. It’s much quicker Anything will do
Here I’m using curtain weights and washers The length is running this way This is your straight grain guide
which is parallel to the selvedge Clip these notches as you cut out You can use the notches as a guide
for matching larger patterns Don’t worry to much about matching
a print such as this For the gusset lining
use something like cotton T-shirt jersey Something soft and stretchy Remember we cut this out without seam allowance Once your pattern is cut out
don’t forget to mark all your notches Just one snip halfway into the seam allowance
is all that is needed Lycra is very easy to sew and although you will see most commercial garments
sewn together with overlocking and cover stitch Your regular sewing machine can produce identical
or even better results if you have the know how So let’s talk stitches If you are stitching Lycra for the first time
it is worth using up some off cuts to test your stitches This is my preferred stitch for seams in Lycra Two rows of machine stitching with a slight zigzag
and then trimmed afterwards It’s very neat and there is plenty of stretch Here we have one row of slight zigzag
and a full zigzag next to it This is useful if you think your jersey
is loosely stitched and prone to running Again trimmed afterwards In practice of course you would use
a matching thread for these seams For turnings and for encasing the elastic
around the legs, the twin needle is ideal Here I have used wooly nylon for the bobbin thread This is also know as Bulk Looper Thread
and does what it says It softens and covers raw edges well when overlocking but is also great with twin needle stitching Try hand winding the wooly nylon on the bobbin
for best results A nice stretch turning And here is a turning using just the zigzag stitch and ordinary thread in the bobbin This stitch works really well on swimwear Perhaps it is a little less
like a commercially made garment It has plenty of stretch And again trim the seam after sewing for best results You can also use wooly nylon in the bobbin So that is an insight into your choices for stitching It is always worth while testing stitches
threads and sewing machine needles so that you will have trouble free sewing Garment Construction We have here the Front and Back The Front is longer at the crotch The first seam to stitch is this crotch seam It’s a short seam and you probably don’t need to pin it Use ball point pins with jersey. It does make a difference I shall use my preferred stitch The two rows of narrow zigzag It’s not so necessary to press the seams
on this sort of jersey Trim the seam to a millimetre or so from the stitching Now is the time to add the crotch lining Line it up carefully Pin all round The raw edges will be neatly encased
within the leg turnings We don’t normally need to neaten these edges
as this jersey will not ravel If you have a basting stitch
on your sewing machine, use it I find it fixes much more securely than hand basting Right that will stay in place while we get on So with rights sides together Pin the shoulder seams And join the side seams matching the notches So again two rows of narrow zigzag and trim back to a millimetre or so from the stitching So the seams are stitched and trimmed Next we are going to finish
the neckline and armhole edges Although I’m not pressing these seams, it’s usual
to make sure that seams lie towards the back I’m going to use a 4mm twin or double needle
for stretch fabrics For an extra neat finish, clip the seam allowance
at the seam line, just short of the first row of stitching and have the seam allowances lie in opposite directions This does wonders to reducing bulk when seams cross I am machine basting the neckline ⅝” turning in place Later on you may be happy to skip this step and
sew the turning from the right side without the basting Doing it this way makes it much easier to sew
around the curves and guarantees good results ry not to stretch as you stitch If you haven’t got a basting stitch
on your sewing machine use the longest stitch and loosen the tension a little As you approach the curve of the neckline
you can stretch a little so that the seam allowance remains flat as you sew Do your best to keep the seam width even So continue all the way round Keep your basting an even distance from the fold We will be using this as a guide
when we sew from the right side So this is now basted We are going to stitch either side of the basting
using the twin needle Check your sewing machine manual
for twin needle threading It’s best to start stitching in an inconspicuous place For the neckline
I usually start just behind the shoulder seam and just behind the side seam for the underarm Guide the basting into the centre of the foot And I finish stitching by overlapping an inch or so
which is enough to stop the stitches coming undone You can use the useful product Fray Check
or sew in ends if you prefer The neckline and armholes are stitched
so take out the basting That’s not such a difficult job
as the twin needle stitching lies either side so the basting doesn’t get caught up Tweezers are really useful for this job Once the basting is removed trim back the seam
allowance to a millimetre or so from the stitching Just slide your scissors along
without trying to get too close You will find that after washing this edge will look
less and less like a raw edge as the jersey is inclined to roll If you look at manufactured swimming costumes
and also underwear stitched using cover stitch you will find that this cut edge finish is used although commercial machines
cut off the allowance during the sewing process rather like an overlocker does So that is the neckline and armholes finished
to a very high standard A nice finish on the inside The curved neckline lies nice and flat There is plenty of stretch All the qualities needed in great swimwear Now for the legs Choosing Elastic I have a selection here Firstly, here is this specialist swimwear elastic It is supposed to be chlorine and seawater resistant Personally I don’t much like working with it
It’s rather too wide so I will leave this for another video I find regular elastic holds up very well I’ve used this narrow Prym elastic for swimwear before This ordinary elastic from John Lewis is fine I like this flesh colour
In fact it feels softer than the white I don’t know why that is
as they are labelled the same So this is the one I am going to use I find the easiest and neatest way to apply elastic is to machine baste it in place within the seam allowance and at the same time
stretching the elastic a little as you go round This makes topstitching with the twin needles
from the right side very easy So at the sewing machine and using a basting stitch place the elastic in position just before the seam line Fold over the ⅝” seam allowance Take a couple of machine stitches to anchor the elastic then fold in the seam allowance and baste
stretching the elastic slightly You should try and stretch the elastic
more around the back of the leg and only very slightly along the leg front Push the elastic against the fold as you sew Cut the elastic leaving a little extra When you get close to the starting point
trim the elastic so that it just overlaps the beginning tucking it inside the seam allowance Take advantage of your free arm sewing machine
if you have one Slipping the leg over the free arm
does make it a little easier Getting started with the elastic in position
is the hardest bit Once you have it anchored with a few stitches
you are away So again, remember to stretch the elastic a little more
along the back leg than the front leg section That is the second leg done So the for the final stitching
using the twin needle, sew as before feeding the basting stitch into the centre of the foot Start your stitching at the crotch seam Stretch the elastic as you stitch As you reach the end trim your threads and try and sew exactly over the beginning stitches Returning to the flat bed
I’m stitching around the other leg All that is left to do now is to remove the basting Once the basting is removed, trim back the seam
allowance to a millimetre or so from the stitching The swimming costume is finished
and I’m very pleased with it The basting stages may be a bit of a chore
but the result is worth it If you wanted to line this costume, use Lycra lining Treat the two layers as one and make in the same way A racing back version would be
a nice addition to my pattern collection

13 Replies to “Sewing Swimwear, The In-Depth How to Sew a Swimming Costume”

  1. You have done it again, Ms. Kane!

    You completely demystify the process of garment creation. And the fact that you share so much, so willingly, and for free is a godsend to the sewing community of YouTube.

    Take a bow! 😀😍

  2. This is probably a silly question but on the leg area, are you basting through the fabric directly in to the elastic or right next to it? When finishing are you putting your double sticker right through the elastic or are the stitches running right next to the elastic?

  3. Angela, I love this swimwear pattern, I have a tummy and would like to put a skirt or peplum on, are you able to explain or do a tutorial on how to do this, please.

  4. I bought this pattern and it seems to be very short in the torso area and the leg hole is to small….how do I fix that?

  5. Wow, thank you for this tutorial. I do have 1 comment though… I noticed you didn't apply any elastic to the armhole and neckline…Could you tell us why? Thank you!

  6. About to pattern test a swimsuit for a company. It'll be my first swimwear/lycra. Thankyou so much for such an informative video!

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