Thursday, June 6, 2013

Ottobre 03/2011-30: Mermaid Swimsuit

Hey SwimAlong crowd! First swimsuit of the season - done!
I like sewing kids swimwear. Fewer fitting issues to worry about.
Given my last post, I'm sure you can guess that this is NOT a Big 4 pattern. This is from the 03/2011 issue of Ottobre. I have used this issue a ton! It has a lot of really great, versatile styles in it. This suit is #30, the Mermaid swimsuit.
I made some minor style changes. The original is made of a solid and stripe in pink and white, with the stripe on the lower section and midriff band. I decided to put the polka dot on the upper bodice and midriff instead. I also omitted the bow, but added some stretch piping to the seam between the midriff band and the bodice, just to highlight that seam.
I'm very pleased with the fit, particularly in back. Myra has a pretty prominent backside, and this suit covers it well. She measures nearly exactly to a size 104, so that is what I made. As you can see, it fits her well, but there is a small amount of room to grow.
I finished all of the openings with rubber elastic. I used 1/4 inch wide rather than 3/8. I prefer the thinner elastic for children's wear, but it is a little trickier to work with. I topstitched with my coverstitch machine. In retrospect, I wish I had used the narrower stitch rather than this wide one. Since the elastic is so narrow, I think it would have been a little nicer looking.
Not that you can tell when she's on the move! The suit is performing well, and she really likes it, so it's definitely a win.
Happy summer! Now to sew up some trunks for my boys...

Today's tip

This is a quickie, but hopefully useful. This pattern didn't include specific lengths for the elastic in the leg, arm and neck openings. Fortunately, the Singer Sewing Activewear book has a handy chart so that you can figure it out yourself. This is especially great if you need to alter an opening for fit or personal preference. Since the book is out of print, I'm going to share the chart here.
If you click on it, it will take you to Flickr, where you can see it much larger. Hope it helps you!


  1. Your daughter looks like she's having a lot of fun in her new suit!

  2. Too cute!
    The last of my shopping list items arrived today so I can get sewing - I can't promise to look as adorable in my swimsuit as Myra does though!

  3. Summer fun with hoses and little pools - the best! I love Myra's new suit, very stylish. Where did you get the polka dot fabric?

  4. That turned out great! Thanks for the guide on cutting elastic. Definitely going to make note of that for future reference.

  5. They're very cute, out there enjoying the beginning of the summer sun. Myra's swimsuit is adorable!

  6. Cute, cute suit! I've made it many times. Interesting to see the recommended elastics lengths. I don't make my elastics anywhere near that small at the waist - more that one or two inches smaller.

  7. That's so cute! that polka dot fabric is the best!

  8. Nicely done and she makes an excellent model as always!

  9. Aw, very cute bathing suits and even better swimsuit models! :)