OK, I am so envious that you had the foresight to order solids from Spandex World. Might have to get myself back over there and consider some options to do some sort of colorblock action… So chic, right?
I saw you mentioned needles. I’ve been doing some reading (consummate researcher, that’s me!), and Sandra Betzina recommends the ball point needles for Nylon/Lycra blends–she says the stretch aren’t as good. (I have a copy of Fabric Savvy and it’s SO useful for this kind of thing.) I’m thinking I’ll have both on hand and see which I prefer, but hopefully the ball points will do the trick.
Since I was already in research mode, I went out today looking for patterns. I’d love to make my own, but I feel pretty sure the wise course of action might be to construct something from a pattern first before winging it. Harks back to my archaeologist/measure-twice-cut-once days, y’know? I envy you that you jump in and see what happens–I would love to do that more often.
Someone else recommended Stretch and Sew, which were OK too, but by this point, I was feeling inspired and impatient, so I went ahead and just dove right in. I know! I was pretty surprised too, but this whole project just has me so darn motivated.
I used a suit whose dimensions fit me well–everything I’ve read has said that the body length is the most important dimension to get right, since the fabric will stretch side-to-side.
I laid it out on some art paper I snaked from the kids, made a sketch, added seam allowances, and felt totally ready.
Somewhere along the way I read a hint to tape down the fabric, and I gotta say, it was totally right on the money–HUGE help when I got the rotary cutter going and started cutting.
So here’s where I am now:
Just the one at the moment, since the girls both took theirs out of town with them. I’m planning to stitch this one up and check the fit to see if my methodology holds water (hey, look at that! an archaeology reference AND a swimming pun! in the same sentence!), and then tackle the other two.
Are you wondering about elastic like I am? I’ve seen plenty of folks mention using swimsuit elastic, and others who say it doesn’t make a difference and the regular stuff is just fine. Call me crazy, but I don’t really want to do casings–what if we use fold-over elastic, instead??
Oh, we’re so close. I can feel it. But you ever notice that most of the mistakes in sewing happen riiiiight when you start to think, “Hey, this is going really well! I’m making such great progress! I’ll be done so much sooner than I thought!”? Ever notice that? And then your bobbin runs out.
Can’t wait to see what you’re doing on your side of the Americas!