Mary Anne Tries to Sew Herself a Swimsuit, Part 2

(warning, there are going to be a lot of mistakes in this series)

So I’ve cut out patterns before, and felt reasonably confident on that part. The pattern they sent is designed to be laid out flat on the fabric for the most efficient use of fabric, but they do indicate fold lines, in case you want to fold your fabric instead. I knew I’d want to, because I hate it when patterns don’t line up, and since the fabric I was using had a vertical pattern, I needed to be a little careful about layout to make it all come out right. (I didn’t have the skill to make the bands line up perfectly, as you’ll see later, but I think I did reasonably well for a beginner-not-couture-sewist).

So I laid it out (making sure the trees weren’t upside down), pinned it, cut it, repeated as needed with the other pieces.

When I had the front and back of the top cut out, I sewed them together at the top as instructed. Um, not quite as instructed. I knew that for a swimsuit, I was supposed to use:

– stretch swimsuit fabric (check)
– a stretch needle for my sewing machine (ordered and installed, check)
– stretch thread (bought it, couldn’t find it, it’s here somewhere, oh well, used regular thread)
– a zigzag stitch — and this is where I feel dumb, because my machine has a zigzag stich, but it also has another stitch that is sort of like a zigzag, but not really, but I was supposed to use a small zigzag stitch, and I thought this might be it, so I just used that for basically the whole swimsuit, and it was only after I’d finished all the sewing that I somehow remembered what I’d blanked out, that there are instructions in my sewing machine guide that tell you how to change the stitch width for things like the zigzag stitch. So the stitch you see here is wrong, sigh. That might mean the suit will fall apart a little faster, oh well.

Still, I sewed the top, I sewed the sides together, I tried it on, it fit reasonably well, woohoo.

(I was also watching the new Sister Boniface Mysteries during the day of sewing, six episodes, having finished Father Brown a few weeks ago and watched the first two episodes of these last night. So if you’re wondering how long it took me to sew this swimsuit — six full-length episodes, that’s how long. I made a lot of mistakes. I think, now that I have the pattern and know what I’m doing, sewing another swimsuit like this one would probably take me two hours? Something like that.)

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