I am a total bombshell in this swimsuit. The first time I sewed the Bombshell Bikini by Closet Case Files I made a few design decisions that left me feeling like an almost. But this time? Total Bombshell.
So, what did I learn that made this one a rockin’ success? Better color choice, for sure. Instead of a pale pink the color of my skin, I picked an iridescent purple that I bought at Britex Fabrics that actually compliments my skin tone. I left off the halter top that (although I like halters sometimes) made me feel like a line-backer, emphasizing my strong shoulders in the wrong way. And, I made the bikini bottom version of the Bombshell Swimsuit pattern and drafted my own bikini top. I love the full coverage of the bottom and the slip of skin showing at my waist, an asset that I like to highlight.
For the bikini top, I added some small gathers to side and center to coordinate with the strong gathering in the Bombshell bottoms. For a fun detail, I put a twist in the center front. [NOTE: This bikini top turned out to be a first draft of my Nautilus Swimsuit, so if you’re interested in making your own, check out my Nautilus Swimsuit pattern!]
So that no lining fabric would show through at the twist, I put in a fashion fabric facing on the inside. For the construction on the bikini top and Bombshell bottom, I used my stretch zig-zag to sew the elastic to the swimsuit fabric and then used my straight stretch stitch for the final top-stitching. I wasn’t super thrilled with how visible the zig-zagging was on the outside of my suit the first time around and my machine has a really stretchy straight stretch stitch. I’m much happier with the topstitching this time around, but I recommend following my example only if you have a great straight stretch stitch on your machine, otherwise stick to zig-zags.
I inserted swimsuit bra cups that I cannibalized from a thrift-store bikini (so that they were cheap and I knew they could handle being in a swimsuit) and also cannibalized the rear clasp. I put a piece of boning in the sides of the bikini so that it would better hold its open shape.
I sewed the Bombshell bikini bottom exactly according to the instructions other than encasing the crotch seam (which Heather mentions as an option in the sewalong on her site). I did it all with my sewing machine, no serger, as you can see by the little ruffle of interior seam, because I don’t trust my serger to hold a construction seam, only to clean finish edges.
I’m sure you’ve seen tons of other lovely ladies out there rockin’ the Bombshell, but if you haven’t picked up a copy for yourself yet, you have 3 days left to get it as part of the Perfect Pattern Parcel #3 – a package of patterns from indie designers that benefits children’s education through Donor’s Choose. I already had the pattern from before the parcel, but seeing a new round of Bombshells pop up in the blogosphere definitely spurred me to finally sew it a second time!
I have a bit of this awesome fabric left over and I think I’m going to have to make a second bikini bottom (a skimpier one, gasp!) to match the top and if I can eke it out a different top as well so that I have options to wear on my upcoming honeymoon. It’s rare that I spend much time in a swimsuit (usually only if in mixed company in a hot tub) since I’m pale and need to stay out of the sun. But I’m looking forward to tropical beaches in this swimsuit, even if I’m under a big beach umbrella!
I planned to go to the park this morning to take photos of this swimsuit since it was supposed to be 72 degrees. Well, it may have been that nice in the sunnier half of the city, but it certainly wasn’t on the top of diamond heights. The fog was out and the wind came up and all the people there bundled in sweaters with their kids and dogs were staring at me like you would stare at a crazy lady taking pictures of herself in her bikini in the middle of park in winter-like weather!