Closet Case Files Bombshell Swimsuit

The Swimalong Katie and I did is wrapping up now and while I may still be waiting for lining for one of my other suits I’m making, I can now show off my Closet Case Files Bombshell swimsuit! I’m really excited. You won’t believe me when I tell you that I didn’t alter the pattern at all! I traced the size 12 and made it. I did measure the pattern to make sure I’d be cool but I also appreciate knowing that this pattern comes with negative ease- like a suit should fit- so I knew I’d be okay. I should’ve cut the 10 hip or in between the 10 and the 12 because I got no rumpus. It’s just a fact. But as you’ll see, it’s not too baggy in the butt. So, yay!

Thanks Heather Lou for a great pattern!

I did add what ended up being a strapless underwire bra because while the halter straps were holding me up, I wasn’t up enough and I also wanted some nice shaping. The bra is the only part of the suit that I was really nervous about and it all turned out great thanks to Norma’s bra making book and the tutorial she generously wrote for our swimalong. I might have to replace it in time because I didn’t use swim elastic on it. I also didn’t take into consideration that I was going to need to sew the bra into the side seams and, well, the side seams don’t match up with where I would need the bra side seams to be. That’s why I added the regular bra back. But, hey, it works!

One of the things I think that makes this suit work for my much larger chest is all that ruching. The ruching at the bust helps out, too. If you look at other bombshells with smaller chests, you’ll see that the center bust gathering is between both bewbs. Mine is more at the top of that space. Had I gathered more of the swim fabric my rack would’ve looked much grander. Leaving the bust gathers as marked on the pattern, I believe I’ve minimized my bust- not something I needed to do but I wanted to point it out.

I bought my lemonlicious fabric as well as the lining from The Fabric Fairy. It’s so pretty and difficult to photograph!

I bought my swim elastic and bra making supplies from Sew Sassy. I made my swim cups by tracing a well fitting bra and then making the bra out of poly foam like Norma says in her tutorial, butting up the foam and stitching a short and wide zig zag to stitch them together.

And, now, the story of a lady wearing a swimsuit. Where did she come from? Who is she with? Few knew. Here is what we know about her.

front bombshell

She likes relaxing at the side of the club house.

frisbee bombshell

and playing a little frisbee

bombshell side

she’s not afraid of splashing around in the ocean

bombshell floaty side front

She’s the Sunshine Princess!

bombshell floaty 2

but sometimes that water is cold

bombshell back

and she’ll gladly stick to the frisbee game.

sepia bombshell front

There you have it. Go check out the Bombshell sewalong. Lots of great tips there.

I think the hardest part about making a swimsuit for me is the bust support. If that’s true for you, then add the underwire. I actually may need to stitch the straps to the back of the suit because I really need the strapless I made to have over the shoulder support or I need to swap out the back fabric of the bra for sturdier stuff. Other than that, you’re golden. Oh, and take people’s advice- don’t pre-wash your swim fabric.ย Otherwise it’ll curl and you’ll hate yourself and I don’t want that for you.ย ETA: If your swim fabric is thin it will curl when you wash it and Heather Lou reminds us in the comments that you’d be better off pre-washing for bleeding and shrinking potential. I didn’t pre-wash this fabric but I did pre-wash other swim fabric I’m working with for another suit. Some of the pieces are curling like mad while others are fine.

Happy sunshine times!

74 thoughts on “Closet Case Files Bombshell Swimsuit

  1. Betsy says:

    WOW! You look great. That is a great suit and couldn’t look any better. Good job. Golly, you can sew anything! I mean it, that is just fabulous.


  2. Brooke says:

    Love the fabric, love the suit, LOVE it on the model! You look great and don’t let anyone convince you otherwise! =)

    btw, you get the thumbs up from my husband too. (He was looking over my shoulder.)

  3. nettie says:

    You look beautiful!!! How I wish we could do a big ole swimsuit meetup!!

    BUT!! OH NO!!! I washed my fabric! Will I want to chuck the whole thing out now??!?!?!?

  4. Suzy says:

    It looks great, and thanks for all the extra info about sewing in a bra, that’s the one thing that really put me off sewing my own swimsuit but now I have the bombshell pattern, material and all the help from the sewalong’s, just have to wait for some warm weather (we are in winter right now and I am so jealous of all the warm weather photos I keep seeing!)

    • Leila says:

      I’m so glad you’re going for it. Please don’t hesitate to ask me for help. Sewing the bra into the side seams would’ve worked for me if I had narrower underwires (not gonna happen) or if I had cut a larger front and smaller back so to move the side seam back a little more. Oh, and I was totally jealous of the southern hemisphere summer pics during our winter, too. I know that feeling. ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Tia Dia says:

    This looks fantastic! I have been rather skeptical about this pattern because all the versions I’ve seen have been for small chests, and anything looks wonderful on girls that don’t need extra support. I am so glad to see your version and read the details about the construction. I totally love your lemonicious fabric! How fun! And now I just may add this to my sewing queue-turned-sewing-bucket-list.

    • Leila says:

      Exactly! Swimwear is super easy if you don’t need added support, really. The minute you need an underwire, you’re making a bra but really the hardest part of bra making is the fit. I think I skipped the worry of fit by tracing my bra. With your sewing skills you’d make such an awesome swimsuit!

  6. Heather Lou says:

    I was so excited when I saw your fabric and this lives up to all my expectations and more. It’s really mind blowing to me to see how amazing this looks on everyone I’ve seen it in…. You look stunning. Thank you for making it and for the amazing Swimalong. It really helped make my posts better. Yay for sharing!

    • Leila says:

      Dude, you did such an amazing job with this pattern!! I think my post needed more exclamation points. ๐Ÿ™‚ I’ll stop writing cos I’m getting all fan girl on you- tho I already started that on your blog. haha. and yes, big time yay for sharing.

  7. Kathy says:

    Love this fabric! I was THIS close to buying the same stuff from the fabric Fairy… I ended up with another option. Beautiful swimsuit!!! I just finished View B and blogged about it too, but am going to make View A later this week.

  8. Gjeometry says:

    Yay! Did it ever turn out fantastic! Such kitschy fabric, lemoniscious. And you look terrific in it, nice prop posing :). The inserted bra cups and wiring all sound very complicated, so kudos on engineering that baby up (pun intended, naturally). Swim on!

  9. Jo says:

    Leila I am SO happy and grateful that you have posted about this in such detail, it’s wonderful to see how it works with the larger bust and read your explanations. I couldn’t quite get how it all worked, but seeing the pictures it all becomes clear – and suddenly I see a swimsuit I would dare to both make and wear! You look FABULOUS in it!

    • Leila says:

      I was hoping these pics and all the detail would help others- that’s all I really ever want out of this blog. I hope you do make it. Once I got over my bra making fear it was all done.

    • Leila says:

      Thanks! I did wear it to swim in- tho “swim” is really just goofing off in the pool. ๐Ÿ™‚ It’s a fun one. The friend I went to the pool with kept staring at me and complaining about her suit. hehe. I think she wants me to make her one.

  10. Clare Szabo says:

    Okay, after that blonde moment I can see how to comment so that I can now say (as James Woods said to Dolly Parton in ‘Straight Talk’ when she unleashes her boobies) “HOLY MOLY!” I love these pics, you look the cutest of the cute and I hope my bombshell turns out a fraction as good as yours. Really really cool and beautiful! My fav is the ‘water is cold’ pic. Your RAWK! ๐Ÿ˜‰ xxx

  11. Cari Homemaker says:

    You look incredible! I fell for that fabric too, but being too timid to wear a white suit myself, I plan to make it up for my daughter. You should have seen the face she made when she saw that someone else had “her” lemon swimsuit fabric.

  12. Hannah says:

    I just had a quick question, I am taking on sewing a a suit for this summer too, but as I have been doing it, my sewing machine seems to be ‘skipping’ stitches.. Any clue whats going on? Its driving me crazy!!

    • Leila says:

      It could be a couple of things. First thing I’d do is double check that I’m using a ball point needle. if that’s not working, I hear some people have better luck with stretch needles. A fresh needle might be in order regardless. After that, I’d rethread the machine and cut off any thread that was actually in the machine. It could be faulty thread. I might then test on scrap swim fabric with a wider or narrower stitch until I got no skipping. Start with the needle and let me know. Also, is it giving you problems with other knit fabric?

      • Hannah says:

        Ok, Thanks so much for your reply!
        I made sure it was the right needle, and then i replaced it all together.. But now it seems worse.. ahh! Im so frustrated.. Im at a loss for what i should do! ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

      • Hannah says:

        Lol! Alright, so I went and got a stretch needle, and was still having problems.. BUT I decided to try reinforcing it with some freezer paper, and now it works perfectly!! Thanks for all the help! ๐Ÿ™‚

      • Meigan says:

        I use a stretch needle when making swimsuits, it’s less likely to bounce off the spandex. If the needle isn’t the problem, nor the thread, try lowering the tension and see if that helps.

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