Swim Style Jazz Tankini

Following the success of my Closet Case Bombshell swimsuit, I thought I’d make some more togs/swimmers. I contemplated making the Bombshell again, then decided to try something completely different. I like the idea of a tankini to cover my tum, but offering the flexibility of a two piece. The fabric I’ve had for a while and I was determined to make it up and it is one of my #2019makenine.

After a hunt around the interwebs, there were a number of different options and I finally settled on the Jazz Tankini from Swim Style Patterns. I’ve seen very few reviews from this pattern company, who are based in Australia. They have a lot of patterns, but this one-piece/tankini pattern spoke to me with the gathers on the bust and ruching on the front. I was nervous about making a swimsuit which had underwired cups.

I started to cut out the pattern and realised that there was actually no bottoms for the tankini! A quick email to the designer and she sent through the high-waisted briefs pattern. I was really impressed with the speed of her response. Thanks Sharon!

The pattern offers a number of different options. It’s available as a one-piece or tankini. Each of these has the option for a V-wire (a central wire), centre straps going into a halter neck or detachable shoulder straps. It’s also fully lined with wadding to provide shape for the bust area. Directly below the bust is a channel of elastic ensuring a great fit.

I chose to make the version with detachable shoulder straps. I made up a size 16/XL based on my full bust measurement. The fit for the tankini is pretty good, the length and back width are great, as is the front underbust. I should, however, have done an FBA. I have larger girls than the pattern is drafted for. No cup size is detailed on the pattern, but I guess it’s likely drafted for a B or C cup.

The tankini went together a lot quicker than I thought. The wadding is just joined together, not an overlapped seam. This is then strengthened using some of the main fabric. The upper back and lower bodice pieces are all lined ensuring the raw edges are completely enclosed.

The detachable straps can be attached to the made tankini using lingerie hooks and tape on the bodice. These also have sliders allowing you to adjust their length.

The high waist briefs are a separate pattern. These are also fully lined. They have elastic only on the back leg edge and the waist making them really comfortable. The leg edges are intended to look completely seamless, however, I was unable to get hold of the narrow 6mm swimwear elastic, so I ended up having to zig-zag around the leg edges to ensure they laid flat.

I was also running out of lining and the backs of the briefs have a seam down the middle of the lining. This doesn’t detract from the finished item. The way they are stitched together also ensures the raw edges of the side seams are completely enclosed.

I like the briefs, and made a size 16/XL based on my hip measurements. I actually feel they may be a tad big for me however and probably could have got away with the 14.

The details
Fabric:  Four-way stretch swimwear fabric from the Fabric Fairy, purchased in November 2017. The lining also came from the Fabric Fairy and is left over from the lining I bought for the Bombshell swimsuit, so bought in 2015!
Notions:  Lots! Thread, swimsuit elastic, sliders, lingerie hooks, channel tape, wadding. All the additional notions, except the thread came from Nellie Joans here in NZ, who was amazing and helped me put together everything I needed to finish this in time.
Pattern:  Swim Style Jazz Tankini, size 16/XL. Swim Style High waist briefs, size 16/XL
Changes made: The only change I made was to the leg edges on the briefs, mainly because I didn’t have the narrow elastic. I ended up folding over and zig zagging them all the way around.
Recommendations: I really recommend both patterns. I found the instructions are really clear and easy to follow. For the tankini, there is also an additional online tutorial for the upper front bodice. Each step has been described very clearly, which made this a relatively quick, easy and painless make. I thought I might be cutting it fine to get this ready in time for our holiday in Rarotonga in March, but it wasn’t, I got this finished with days to spare! Photos taken last week, some at the beginning of our holiday and the remainder at the end. (The camera steamed up from the heat outside, so I have some ethereal type photos!)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s