Saturday, May 21, 2011

Ottobre "Seahorse" Swimsuits: Completion and Success!

I put the finishing touches on the swimsuits today as the girls napped.  I started them a few days ago, and have only been working intermittently.  I think I could have completed the project in a single day had I worked straight through, but I had supplies to get, and then other things to do, so I started on Wednesday, I think, and finished today (Saturday).  Sewing on the spandex was surprisingly easy, and I have had a lot of practice on the techniques I used to dread:  binding and elastic (in this case, clear elastic tape, with which I have a real love-hate relationship).

I actually did pay quite a bit of attention to the leg bands.  Rather than following the directions for the length of clear elastic tape, as I have found that Ottobre's estimates very rarely work for the tape that I can find at JoAnn's, after pre-stretching the tape (a very, very important step), I wrapped the tape around the girls' legs and cut enough to wrap around with about 1/2" overlap, or a little less.  The leg holes are not gathered much, but it is enough for a good fit:

One thing that disappoints me a bit with the design is the the way the straps are attached.  Because I tacked them to the binding by going over the topstitching,

 it has a bad tendency to flip down.

I have seen other examples of this swimsuit, and some have chosen to attach the strap with an extra row of stitching.  I think a print would be more forgiving for that, however, and I think I will leave it as it is.  Seeing that this is a problem for others, though, I know at least that it is not something that I have done wrong!

It is fun seeing how differently it fits each of my girls while still flattering both.  Doodle, who is 5 years and wears a 6-6x, is wearing European sz. 116, which fits her in the width while being a bit too long (even though she has a longish torso!).  On the Ottobre size charts, she measures a sz. 110 in width and a 116 in length, so this one seems to run a little long (it even seems to wrinkle a bit on the model in the magazine):

Bellie, who is 
3 years and
wears a 
3T-4T, has
a sz. 98, and 
fills it out 

 Swimsuit sewing was much less painful than I imagined.  I am considering trying my hand at one for me, although I don't think the style that Ottobre published for women in their last women's issue is one that will be very flattering on me.  Ah well, we'll see!--but not just yet.

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