The sun is out and we’re headed to the beach to meet maker and designer Jo Kalute of the women’s swimwear brand Clovelly Cozzies based out of Sydney, Australia. Inspired by sea-side living and Jo’s African heritage, Clovelly Cozzies offers timeless beauty that is accessible to women all across the globe. Not summer-ready in your part of the world? A unique thing about Jo is that she offers the designs she features on her swimwear line in her Spoonflower shop. (We’re loving her Many Hands Print on the Inari Crop Tee available on Sprout Patterns.) It was such a pleasure getting to know Jo and you’re going to love this feature—so suit up and dive in!
My day starts with…
“A healthy breakfast of muesli, yogurt, and fruit followed by a hot cup of coffee. I love to brew my own coffee at home and experiment with different blends. I’m partial to Kenyan coffee!”
If you’re new to sewing, the thought of working with knit fabrics might have you running in the opposite direction. Nightmares of fabric slipping all over the place and broken stitches galore may haunt you at night but today’s tips and tricks from the London based blogger behind Wanderstitch will be a dream come true. By the end of Sarah’s visit, you’ll be ready to create your own version of her Sport Lycra Kielo Wrap Dress!
This week, we’re chatting with lingerie designer and sewing teacher, Maddie Flanigan of lingerie brand, Madalynne. Operating a studio out of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Maddie is a woman on a mission. As she puts it, “My overarching vision is to provide women with feminine lingerie that is equally beautiful as it is functional, whether that be through sewing their own or buying from the market.” With a new made-in-the-USA line of lingerie available through her site, Anthropologie and more, a pattern licensing deal with Simplicity, and bra-making workshops taught in her studio, Maddie is doing just that! If you’re ready for a dose of inspiration from someone with incredible passion and drive, you are in for a treat with our next maker interview.
My day starts with…
“I wake up between 4 and 5 a.m., so first things first: COFFEE! Along with my morning jolt, I answer emails that may have come in overnight and finish any work leftover from the day before. For me, it’s also important to set aside time for myself, so prioritizing a daily workout in the morning is a habit I’ve developed over the past ten years. For example, do you ever have fifty tabs open on your computer’s browser? Well, that’s me when I wake up and by working out I’m able to ‘close out’ those miscellaneous tabs and narrow my focus to what needs to be done that day.”
When maker Bethany Ludlam visited the Dominican Republic with her husband in 2015, her soul was instantly enamored with the glimmering beaches and vibrant community of the Dominican people. That vacation is what led Bethany to create her own swimsuit brand, Lsea Swimwear. Based in Jacksonville, Florida, Lsea Swimwear products are entirely handmade in the United States and feature tropical and fun prints from independent designers. Ready for a feel-good bonus? Bethany donates a portion of each swimsuit sale back to the Dominican community that inspired her brand. We love seeing Spoonflower fabrics displayed in such a playful and imaginative way, so grab your shades and soak up our latest meet the maker interview!
My day starts with:
“I always begin each day with an energizing kale, spinach and strawberry smoothie. Afterwards, I go into the office and start packaging customer orders then eventually move to designing or sewing, however each day is always different!”
The summer weather is heating up here in North Carolina and the first day of summer is right around the corner (oh wait – it’s here)! The weekends will soon be filled with adventures to the beach and pool which means we’ll also be needing the perfect swimsuit! Luckily, there are so many great swimsuit patterns available to pair with our favorite swimsuit material, Sport Lycra. Today, we’re excited to share one of the newest patterns helping us beat the heat : the RiRi swimsuit by Mimi Goodwin featured in May’s issue of Sew Sew Def Magazine. Keep reading to see how Alexia Sotelo, a self-taught sewist and DIY swimsuit extraordinaire, shows how easy it is to make your own swimsuit. Beat the heat bonus : she’s sharing her own variation of the swimsuit and the secret to a custom swimsuit for just $32.00!
Alexia : I am a self taught seamstress and have been sewing for about 4 ½ years. Since teaching myself to sew, I have learned that sewing swimsuits is probably my most favorite thing to make! People often tell me they would love to sew themselves a swimsuit but are so intimidated and have no idea where to start. While I haven’t been sewing as long as some, I am here to tell you, sewing a bathing suit is really not as hard as it may seem! I think the most difficult part for me is finding quality swim fabric in a print that I like. The Spoonflower sport lycra is nice and thick and has a matte finish to it : just what I like! The only problem I have now is there are SO many amazing designs to choose from it’s nearly impossible to choose just one or two! I absolutely love the RiRi swimsuit and it’s the perfect pattern to use if this is your first attempt at a bathing suit! It has a flattering fit, an on trend vintage style, and it’s construction gives you the freedom to play around with a couple of prints to give it a fun look!
Let’s get started!
Spoonflower has joined with Sprout Patterns again to show you how to stitch up a stretchy, sporty pair of leggings just in time for warm weather. The Sloan Leggings are comfy, stylish, and equally perfect for trail running and running errands. The pattern is for a simple well-fitting pair of leggings, with multiple lengths and a key pocket. Learn more (and get creating!) here. Choose your favorite Spoonflower design, create your leggings, and follow along with the video below. You’ll be comfortably stretching and lunging–or just hanging out with friends–in no time. Let’s get started!
Store-bought swimsuit woes — we’ve all had them. You’re inside a horribly lit fitting room with 10 different suits, all of them gaping in the wrong areas, barely covering you in others. Is it just me or is your normal dress size nearly doubled when it comes to bathing suits? I’m convinced it’s a cruel joke on the part of these swimwear designers who are just out to get us frustrated and confused about what’s going to actually fit. In the journey to total body confidence, swimwear can be a dreaded thing for many women. Enter the me-made suit. When you sew your own, you have complete control over fit. You can show off the areas you feel comfortable with, and cover the parts you want to be more modest about. No weird size tags, just pure and honest measurements. No itchy labels. No weird pulling or gaping. Just your perfect dream suit, in your perfect print or even one you designed yourself.
I recently came across the Bombshell Sew Along and pattern from Closet Case Patterns. Let me tell you — this sew-along / pattern combo was sent from above! I was once super intimidated by the idea of sewing my own swimsuit, but knowing that Heather’s sew along would guide me through each and every step with extremely thorough instructions, photos and diagrams along the way made me feel brave enough to take the plunge — and I’m so glad I did.
Here we are at part three of our Alison Swimsuit sew along! This is the third and final part, so when you are finished with these steps you are done and can start wearing your own. This last part is all about sewing the bands and fitting the suit to your body.
First, we need to sew together and stretch in the back band that transforms into the straps.
We cut two of the strap pieces, so we must first sew them together. Place the edges right sides together and sew/serge.
We are reluctant to say goodbye to summer this year, and so before pumpkins and witches take over everything, we’re excited to share one last summer-sewing DIY: a swimsuit! Me-made DIY swimsuits have been the most exciting sewing trend of the summer, and with our Sport Lycra being so perfect for swimwear, we knew we just had to do a sew-along of our very own to show you just how easy this project really is (plus for our friends in the Southern Hemisphere, summer’s just getting started!).
The Alison swimsuit from Burdastyle is a perfect starter-suit, for those of you who may have never made one before and are feeling a little nervous. Don’t be! Sewing expert Meg from the Burdastyle team is extremely experienced with suit-sewing, and so we couldn’t imagine a better teacher. Over the course of the next 3 weeks, she’ll be walking you through how to sew up this vintage inspired suit in a step-by-step, broken down process that won’t feel too overwhelming. We hope you’ll join us each Monday for the next step in the sew along, and if you have any feedback or questions along the way don’t hesitate to drop us a note in the comments section. Now we’ll turn things over to Meg of Burdastyle so you can get started!
Meg: I used Spoonflower’s new Sport Lycra to make myself a new swimsuit! Just because summer’s closing out doesn’t mean that swim season is over, I always love to go to my local indoor pool for a recreational swim or a good aquafit class. Now I can go in style and comfort with this swimsuit using BurdaStyle’s retro Alison Swimsuit digital sewing pattern and Spoonflower’s Sport Lycra in an adorable watermelon print. I always love working with stretch fabrics since the projects come together rather quickly and easily… if you have the right tools and use the correct techniques, that is! Read (and sew) along as I sew my retro swimsuit step-by-step in this 3 part sew along!
First thing to do is gather up all your materials, for this Alison suit I used 1 yd of the printed Sport Lycra, a little piece of stretch lining (make sure you use a lining with the same stretch qualities as the sport lycra, you could also use Performance Pique or Performance Knit), and about ½ yd swimwear elastic. I suggest using elastic that has a width of ⅜”, you could go as narrow as ¼” and as wide as ½” depending on what you have. You can use knit or rubber elastic, I actually prefer to use rubber elastic for swimwear but already had this nude knit ⅓” wide elastic so I made it work! [Read more…] about Alison Swimsuit Sew Along: Part 1