I had a lot of trouble finding a simple rashie pattern for my girls. There’s lots of long sleeve tops and leotard patterns out there, but they are all quite loose fitting. A swim top like this needs to be close fitting and worn tight, designed with spandex in mind. In the end, I settled on Jalie 3135, which is a neck to toe skinsuit pattern with a zipper front. I modified it a little.
I started with a size 6 for Miss Four and made the following changes:
- cut the leg portion off the pattern and marked where I would like the top to end. I tried to estimate the waist point and then I used other tops belonging to Miss Four to guess the length.
- removed the zipper closure and removed the CF seam to make one front bodice piece to cut on the fold
- The centre back had a curved seam to allow for close fitting to a natural back curve in a one-piece suit. I straightened up this seam and added the lost ease to the side seams instead. I did this so I could then remove the CB seam and cut it as one piece on the fold too.
- skimmed a few cm off the neckline and drew up a new neckband.
- Shortened the arms by 2cm.
I’m actually really pleased with the way it turned out. I found this Jalie pattern to be quite spot on with its recommendation for age and size. Because I’d never sewn a Jalie pattern before, I erred on the side of safety and sewed a few sizes up just to be safe. It still fits Miss Four, but could do with being a little tighter. Miss Six tried it on and if fits her perfectly. But the ownership of this top was non-negotiable, because it was made to match a certain pair of tutu-togs. In any case, I’m happy enough to know that Miss Four is comfortable in it now, and it will fit her next year too. Summertime swimming here we come!