I loathe swimsuit shopping; I can occasionally find bottoms that cover my derriere, but finding a bikini top that gives enough coverage is rather challenging. I do not want to wear a one piece when I’m swimming recreationally. I swam competitively when I was younger, so I get in different state of mind whenever I don a one-piece. This is why I have not purchased a new swimsuit in roughly six years. I’ve seen lots of swimsuits pop up in the blogosphere, and everyone looks so good in their self-made suits. I thought I’d give it a try; after a long while, I found the perfect swim fabric and was debating what pattern I should use. When there was a call for testers for the Splash Swimsuit, I pounced. It was a really fun process and I really love the end result.
- Pattern name: Splash Swimsuit by Lily Sage & co The swimsuit is fully lined and has a gathered top. The pattern includes a bikini and a one-piece.
- Size range: 6-18
- What size did you make? I made a straight size 18 bikini
What are your measurements, height, and body type? I’m 5’5”, with a long torso, and would generally describe my body as a top heavy hourglass.
- What adjustments did you make and how long did they take? I made the width of the bottom band of the bikini top the same as the waistband for added support; this took very little time. I did make the tester version and am unsure if I would have needed further adjustments with the slightly updated pattern drafting. I chose a fabric with 100% stretch to better accommodate my breasts; I wear an F/G bra size.
- What was the construction process like? Did the instructions make sense to you?
- The construction was extremely straight forward. I really enjoyed that there were two different construction methods presented for the straps. There is both a really clean method and a scissor heavy method for constructing the straps; both methods take about the same amount of time. The straps were definitely the most tedious part and seemed to take forever. I really liked the way that the bottoms are constructed since there are no pesky exposed side seams digging into your skin because the bottoms are fully lined.
- Overall, the construction techniques were straightforward. The instructions were clear, and there are “top tips” for choosing your size, tying the top, and various construction elements like gathering. Each of the construction steps has either a color illustration or photo, which was incredibly helpful; I did not have any long, thought-out “ah-ha” moments when making the suit.
- How do you like the pattern’s fit? Do you think the design works well for your particular body shape?
- While most of the “top-tips” were helpful, the one for choosing the size of your bottoms did not work well for me. I have large thighs and maybe should have used my hip measurement, instead of my thigh measurement for choosing the bottoms. They are a little baggy, which is fine for lounging, but not so great once you get wet. However, I would think this would be fine for others whose thighs are more proportional to their hips.
- Overall, this is the best fitting swimsuit I’ve ever had! With the two torso straps on the bikini top, I felt really secure, even in rough waves. The two torso straps provide lots of support, which is why I could wear this suit most of the day and not get a headache. I was a little apprehensive to try this pattern since I’m not a huge fan of the high-waisted pants/swimsuits trend; however, I was pleasantly surprised with how the bottoms look. Overall, this was an empowering make; I’ve never felt so comfortable in a leisure swim suit. I was extremely comfortable in the suit while learning to skim board. Yeah, that’s right I was running around on the beach not worrying that my breast were going to fly out of my top! I think this pattern work well for any body type; everyone has a bikini body.
- Will you make the pattern again? If so, what fit or design changes will you make?
- I will most definitely be making this pattern again. I feel like such a boss whenever I wear it. I will make the bottoms a little smaller and will do a lower rise for the bottoms. I will likely shorten the neck and torso straps, they were a bit long for my liking.
- Do you have any advice on this pattern for other curvy sewers? Are there any resources (blog posts, fitting books, tutorials) that helped you sew this piece up?
- Consider how proportional your thighs are to your hip measurement. I’m really glad I added width to the bottom strap for the added support. I sits very comfortable on my back and does not dig. There are lots of tutorials on-line for working with knits, but the pattern instructions are helpful for finding the right type of stitches for each part of the construction.
Pattern Rating System:
Size Range (1-5): 3
Instructions (1-5): 5
Construction Process (1-5): 5
Final Fit (1-5): 4.5
Overall Rating (1-5) + Explanation:: 4.375
Really, my only issue with this pattern is the limited size range.