Friday, July 29, 2011

Ottobre Tankini for Women

My old swimsuit was bought from Land's End about 10 years ago, and has served me well, but the time had come to replace it. The latest edition of Ottobre Woman had a great pattern for a Tankini which I wanted to try. I was wary though....Would I be wasting my time, and would I look like crap in it....Ottobre are very good at showing their designs on real women, but the swimsuit was only shown on a mannequin....I took a chance. I had some inexpensive swimsuit fabric which I bought on ebay from In Fashion Fabrics. It is sold as dancewear fabric, but it seems fine to me. I have made Maeve a swimsuit in it too, in Navy. The colour of mine is Niagra.(I think!)

Ottobre Woman Swimsuit

I made a couple of changes...I made a bigger bra part...for obvious reasons, and the pattern told me to. Well basically, it said if you have big boobs make a bigger size bra...same thing.
I also made the legs slightly longer on the shorts. I did not want a bikini style bottom, nor did I want short that cut in, so I added a doubled piece of fabric to the bottom...the lower legs make up for the lower top...I hope!
Apolgies in was cold!

Ottobre 2 Piece Swinsuit (One piece of it!)

No modeled photos of the bottoms...not a hope!

I made the straps differently to the pattern. I added them later, hence the seam at the shoulders. I think this style is better for me. The original pattern was Halter-neck, I made them criss-cross type things.....a word to the not pin the straps on, and put the top on to see how it looks, and then try and pull it off over your will stick pins in yourself! Get someone to help you with this.

Swimsuit back

I wore it swimming everyday on our holiday. It was great....we were only splashing about with the kids, but I felt good in it (well as good as I ever do in a swimsuit!)

The whole thing is completely lined and it weighs 13oz...yes I did weigh it..!

If you are not a subscriber to Ottobre and would like to sew something like this, Amanda over on Kitschy Coo has done a tutorial on how to make your own Pin-up Swimsuit. It is fantastic, and free!
Good swimsuits are very expensive, but fabric can be bought quite cheaply, and it really is not difficult to sew.


Cindy said...

It's lovely on you Millie! I'm glad that it worked well on.:)

Mise said...

It looks great - a beautiful colour and a very flattering shape. It had never occurred to me that one could make one's own swimsuits and bras till I started reading your blog!

Kitschy Coo said...

Wowzer, that's some decolletage! You look fabulous and what a great colour on you :)

Some questions... being similar size and shape to me, how did the briefs work out as far as flattering the waist? I've thought about adapting my pattern to a top and high waisted briefs but wasn't sure if it would look good or not. And which weight did you buy from In Fashion Fabrics? I used her silk touch lycra for my lining and it's super thin (and quite a PITA to sew), but yours looks quite sturdy.

Oh, and thanks for the shout out!

Erica said...

I just have to say again how fabulous your swimsuit is! I really need to get over my fear of sewing a swimsuit. Maybe I have to get over my "fear" of wearing them first!

Millie said...

Thanks Cindy....I am glad too!

Thank you Mise..It never occured to me until about two years ago either. I am glad I found out that it is possible, both good bras and good swimsuits cost a fortune!

Thanks Amanda...I debated about this photo and the top in general. On Flickr I asked if it was too low for a mother of 4 in her mid 30's! I tried a panel in the middle but it looked awful!
I think you are waaay slimmer than me....but I find the shorts good on the waist. I made the waist out of swimsuit fabric, like yoga pants. There is no elastic to make bulges! My fabric is a 4way lycra, dancewear. I will email the link to you.
Your swimsuit deserves a shout out!

Millie said...

Thanks Erica...I have that same fear too! This one is a good one though. I am glad I went to the trouble of making it. You should try it...really!

katherine h said...

Great swimsuit. The changes you made were very practical and turned out well. Glad you had fun swimming in it.

Kitschy Coo said...

Thanks for answering my questions :) Your cleavage is spectacular, nothing to be hiding away. Mine tend to migrate towards the middle and I'm totally squicked by them touching each other. I'm weird.

Think I might just try it out with a separate brief, I've seen a lot of nice ones online that I like in a high waisted style (which would hide the multitude of sins perpetrated in the name of gestation), but not sure I'd be brazen enought to wear it in public :)

Millie said...

Thank you Katherine h...I'm all for practicality!

That's funny Amanda! Mine go the opposite direction!
My shorts are well covered by the top, it's quite long. Mine are basically just a full brief pattern, with a yoga style waist band added at the top, and similar bands at the leg openings.

Kitschy Coo said...

Sigh, I wish mine went the other way. Not a fan of the Wonderbra squashed cleavage, want to be able to put something in between them :)

Angela said...

I like the look of your tankini and the colour is perfect. I bought a pattern, have some fabric, but all still sitting there, perhaps if there was more sun I might move them to the top of the list - wishful thinking on all counts!

Jos van KloskaCreAtief! said...

It looks great on you!!

Summer Flies said...

Hi, I've only seen your blog once before but I really like it. I have that issue of Ottobre and must try. I'm only a mother of 1 (7yo boy) but am 49 so I look a bit the same. I think for larger boobs the cross over top is much better even though I love a halter neck. It looks fabulous as do your children.

Marian said...

That's a nice tankini become ..
and a very beautifull collor.
This, I would like to make to, although I can not swim!
The shorts I have ever made ​​for a bra, but it was for me a little too small, you had that problem too?
It's flattering you very well, and I think it fits well.
sorry for my poor English..

Ana said...

hi Millie. I like the cross-over bra style - much nicer than cups and less revealing than a plunge neckline, but still pretty glam. I always have problems with tankini tops riding up but perhaps it's just not enough sit ups that cause that problem.

Millie said...

Nor me Amanda!

Thanks Angela..Sun would be's not looking good at the moment though.

Thank you Jos! Very nice of you to say so.

Thank you Summer Flies...I tried it with a halterneck at first, and it was fine, but it felt more secure this way. Also the Ottobre version ties at the neck...I wouldn't take chances like that!!

Thanks Marian...The bottoms and the top are size 42 and both fit well, but the bra part is a 44. I am happy with the fit of it all.
I do not swim well at all, but my children love swimming, so I try to go with them.

Thank you Ana....This top is really long, and has loads of weight and is quite fitted. It did not ride up... or float up as my last one did!

motherof5 said...

Fab Millie!

Jen said...

The top looks really great! I'm glad to see how you modified the strap portion because I, too, am not fond of the halter style and having significant cleavage as well made me think that the X-back would be a better option for me. Not that I have the time to make one right now, but maybe for next summer.... Did adding the folded pieces at the bottom alleviate the problem of cutting in? It seems like it would be so much more comfortable.

justmejay said...

I love it Millie!

Millie said...

Thanks Nicole!

Thank you Jen...The bottoms of the shorts do not cut in, but I was a tiny bit short of fabric, and the bands could do with being a wee bit bigger...they roll up! Not badly, but if they weren't so tight, they'd be better. I made a muslin in jersey, and it was better, because the bands weren't as snug.

Thanks Justine!

boule2laine said...

Wow!!! sooo nice! I'm looking to sew this tankini...
Thank you so much for your inspiring version

from France

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