Monday, May 26, 2014

Completed: The Birthday (Bombshell) Suit

I'm really going to try to keep my effusiveness in check because all I really want to do is squeal and say THIS IS THE BEST THING I'VE EVER SEWN.

But really. I'll keep it in check.

Last year I made myself a swimsuit and shared it here. It was okay, but I was really uncomfortable in it. I've worn bikinis all my life, but after wearing it one time, I decided it was time for a little more coverage.

I've never found a one-piece that fits. Never. I've got a long torso and minuscule bust, which means one-pieces either ride horrendously or drown me up top.

Last summer I admired the Bombshells created during the Closet Case Patterns sew-along, and thought maybe, just maybe, I could sew my own one-piece.

It worked! (P.S. It's my birthday, too. Hence the post title.)



Surest way to get strange looks from your neighbors: Stand in the middle of the street in a bathing suit and high heels while your husband snaps photos. Then tell your neighbor by way of explaining that you sew and post the photos on the Internet.

Pretty sure we just graduated to becoming the Neighborhood Creepers.




Stats:
Fabric: Nylon/Spandex purchased from Let's Sew in Evansville, IN
Size: Size 4 bust, graded out to size 8 waist, graded back to size 6 hips.
Modifications: Used size 6 straps. Added 3" to the front and back lining pieces. Added 4.8" to the front and back ruched pieces. (Per the sew along instructions, which included modifications for lengthening just that amount. Those are the measurements for two ladies who were 5'10" and made the suit. It's designed based on a height of 5'6". So essentially even though I'm 5'6", I have the torso length of someone 5'10".)
Pros
  • This style really does look flattering on a variety of body types.
  • It's extremely comfortable. I ran, bent over, and wriggled around -- there was no riding or awkward gaping.
  • It's modest but not reminiscent of the skirted suits of the '80s, which I was trying to avoid.
  • I don't feel self conscious about my AAA-cup bust! No cups are caving in, and no enormous pads are necessary.
  • The inside of the suit is polished, and if assembled properly, this suit should last.

Cons
  • There's no bust support, which I imagine is necessary for anyone over an A-cup. She includes instructions for adding cups and a shelf in the sew-along.
  • There's a lot of gathering. A lot. 
  • Working with swimsuit fabric is not for the faint-hearted. It just takes patience.

Thoughts:
  • I didn't use a narrow enough zig-zag stitch for assembly, and I popped some stitches the first time I tried on the suit. It's reinforced with serging, so it shouldn't fall apart. (!!) Next time I'll use a narrower stitch to allow for more stretch room.
  • A narrower stitch will also solve the problem of stitches showing when the seams are pulled.
  • I'm considering sizing up next time. I'm just nervous the bust will be too roomy.
  • I highly, highly, HIGHLY recommend using the sew-along as reference. It's much more detailed than the instructions included with the pattern. If you read through each post/step, she really has included everything you need to know.

The work that went into this design and pattern is incredible. I'm so impressed with the pattern, the instructions, and the end product! 

22 comments:

  1. Wow, this looks amazing on you! I have the Papercut Soma suit on it's way to me but might have to rethink this one too!

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    1. Thank you! The Soma suit looks aaaahhhhmazing. I really like the versions I've seen so far.

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  2. you look great! It is really a great suit for your body. Good job.

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  3. You are one gorgeous and funny Neighborhood creeper haha Love the one piece suit! it does look very comfy. Happy B'Day!

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  4. You always look so good, you could be a model! Amazing job on the swimsuit.

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    1. {blush} Thanks! It helps that my husband is behind the camera saying things like, "Work it, girl!"

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  5. Michelle, I'm having one of those "nothing is going right" days and it really warmed my heart and soul to read your post. Thank you so much for your kind words! You look f$*&ing GORGEOUS! I think you went from neighborhood creeper to neighborhood babe next door, no worries on that front! Really loving those tiny polka dots! Yay for comfy swimwear!

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    1. Thank you! When I finished sewing it up, I told my husband, "She thought of *everything*. This pattern is gold."

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  6. I love this suit! It looks really great on you! If I ever get brave enough to try my hand at swimwear I may just try this one out, I love the style.

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    1. Thank you! Swimsuit fabric is challenging, but it's worth the effort IMHO.

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  7. this looks so great on you! i really want to give swimwear a go this year, and i'll definitely be using this pattern. amazing job!

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  8. I didn't even know sewing a swimsuit was a THING.

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    1. Hahahaha! With my body type, it's certainly preferable to buying them in stores.

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  9. Love the polka dots! I just finished sewing up a Bombshell, too (haven't blogged it yet) and I love it so much I just bought fabric to make another. Three cheers for great patterns!

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  10. Ok I am in the AAA bust club as well and so happy to see you in a one piece suit. It is definitely making me lean more and more towards trying to sew one! LOVELY!

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  11. Looks GREAT on you. Your neighbours certainly had a treat that day :-)
    And just for the record is I ever make one of these costumes for myself and am NEVER, EVER, NOT EVER going to stand out on my street for the photo shoot ;-)

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  12. I just love this on you! i just saw it on Kollabora and wanted to tell you how great it is.

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