Monday, April 11, 2011
Contrasting Binding on Swimsuits Tutorial
When attaching contrasting binding on a tank style suit like this you will need to trim off about 1/4" of the fabric (seam allowance) on the armhole and neckline edge. You can either copy the pattern piece with that much already taken off, or just cut a bit off once you have the pieces already cut out. Or like I did, just trim it a bit once you have the main portion of the suit already sewn together, because I wasn't sure I was going to do this in the first place when I cut it out.
Cut yourself some strap pieces--at least 1 5/8" wide. I'd just go for 2" and make it easier on yourself. I didn't have a brown solid that matched well enough so I cut out strips from the leftover striped fabric. The stripes weren't quite wide enough so I cut a bit extra into the next color. The pink will end up being hidden inside the suit, or cut off completely.
Measure, cut and sew a circle of the binding piece so that it fits almost exactly the armhole opening. If you have to err, err on the side of slightly smaller, not larger, than the armhole opening.
I used the stitch on my machine that is a basic straight stretch stitch (my manual calls it Straight Stretch--go figure). If you aren't sure what to use, check your machine manual, or do a little tester on some scraps. You want the fabric to be able to stretch some without snapping the stitching.
Stretch Twin Needle. (or any other decorative stretch stitch you prefer)
Kwik Sew's Swim & Actionwear book also has great directions and pics on how to do this. It also shows how to add contrasting binding to any style suit pattern. Which is basically what I did with the above one shoulder suit.
**You can head over to my shop if you are looking for already made suits, or would like to order a custom made one. I've been adding more here and there. I also have some swimsuit fabric for sale that might interest you.