How to Make a Swimsuit

By Contributing Writer

If you're intent on looking your best at the pool this summer, you might not be comfortable selecting a swimsuit from the racks at your local department store. Instead, take matters into your own hands and make a swimsuit that will turn heads no matter where you happen to be swimming or lounging.

  • Sketch pad
  • Pencils
  • Fabric
  • Measuring tape
  • Thread
  • Needles
  • Elastic

Browse the swimsuit patterns at a pattern store in your area, or look up their websites online. Patterns are the easiest way to make a swimsuit, and will give you all the information you need to ensure your swimsuit looks and fits right.

Measure your hips and bust and record those measurements for later. Since swimsuits are all made differently, you'll need to use the size chart provided with your pattern to determine the correct dimensions.

Consider which material will be best to make your swimsuit. Most people choose either Lycra or Spandex, while others take it to the next level with velvet or even cotton. Keep in mind that fabrics like Spandex will expand in the water, which might affect your sizing for the suit.

Decide whether you want to use two-way or four-way stretch fabric, which will impact the durability of your swimsuit. Four-way stretch will be more elastic for running, jumping and playing in the water, while two-way stretch has a tendency to run if the wearer participates in lots of activity.

Purchase sufficient lining to cover at least the crotch of your swimsuit. Some people want a more opaque look, and will line almost the entire suit, while others aren't as concerned about it. The color of the fabric you choose is most important, as darker suits require less lining.

Sew your swimsuit according to the pattern you've chosen, using needle and thread. If you're not certain that you can make precise stitches, choose a thread color that matches your swimsuit fabric as closely as possible. This way, mistakes won't be nearly as noticeable.

Attach elastic to the armholes, legholes and neck of your swimsuit, plus the bottom and top if you are sewing a bikini. You might need a wider elastic for the straps of your suit, and make sure that the elastic is wrapped in cotton for maximum comfort.

  • Make sure that the fabric you buy for your swimsuit is chlorine-resistant.