Saturday, May 18, 2013

Jalie 2105 leotard and how to colorblock

Myra has been asking for a new leotard for gymnastics for a couple of weeks now. Her current leo has long sleeves and full length legs and it's getting a little too warm in the gym for that.
I decided to jump on the SCUBA trend, which I think lends itself really well to a gym leotard. I skipped the zipper, since I didn't think it would be comfortable for gymnastics, but went for some colorblocking and a wetsuit like shape.
I used Jalie 2105, which is unfortunately out of print. I'm glad I snapped it up when I did. This is the third time I've used it and I know I will use it again. For this version, I shortened the leg and sleeve to give her a cap sleeve, shortie leotard that should be comfortable in the summer heat.
I extended the neon pink animal print colorblocked area in back as well, although the back panel is narrower. It's pretty pointy at the top, which was kind of a pain to sew.
The fabrics I used were a black milliskin matte spandex, originally from Spandex World, but left over from these bike shorts I made for Mitch. The neon pink animal print was a recent purchase from Spandex World. It's a cotton/lycra spandex, so it has a spongy softness that is very comfortable. Myra really likes it. But then. it's neon pink animal print, so that was a given.
Today's Tip

Today I wanted to show you how easy it is to colorblock any pattern, and share with you one of my favorite marking tools.
The first step in colorblocking any pattern is to decide where you want to "cut up" the pattern. I like to draw right on my pattern pieces before I trace them. It saves me the step of then retracing to add seam allowances.
I use these amazing Frixion pens. I first heard about them from Elizabeth, and they have changed my life. They are completely erasable with a touch of heat. I use them to mark patterns, fabric, pretty much everything. A shot of steam or a touch of the iron removes the mark. So, I use the Frixion pens to outline the size I'm using.
Then in a separate color (so that I don't get confused), I draw my colorblocking line or lines. Now I'm ready to trace. Trace each side of the pattern piece as a separate piece, and remember to add a seam allowance along both sides of the colorblocking lines.
My final front pattern pieces look like this. I used a 1/4 inch seam allowance on the seam that joins my colorblocked section as that is the seam allowance used throughout the pattern. Again so I don't get confused; you can use whatever SA you want.
Now you can take your iron to your pattern pieces and it'll look good as new. Love those Frixion pens.
Now reassemble the panels you colorblocked before you start construction on the garment. Once they are put back together, you can treat them just like the pieces they were originally and follow the pattern instructions as written. Or not. You're the sewist. If you choose to line your garment, you can use the original pattern pieces to reduce the seamlines in your lining.

7 comments:

  1. I'll bet Myra's fellow gymnastics students wish they had adorable colorblocked leotards like hers! I love the idea of your erasable pens, too.

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  2. This is so adorable! A perfect leotard for your spunky giel!

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  3. Just love this one. Would love to make some bike 3/4 rs with such snazzy fabrics. I don't wear shorts anymore. It's too flipping cold here in the UK! Looks like you have lovely weather. Off to stake conference now. Great tips you are passing on. Thank you.

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  4. Myra and I- we are of one style mind, I just sense it. Let it be loud and pink!

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  5. Very cute,bothy leotard and child!!

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