Thursday, January 20, 2011

McCall's 5861 Bikini.

For my second item I made the McCall's bikini pattern I bought in December.

I used the 4-way stretch fabric I purchased from eBay for US$8 per yard. I bought 1 yard of this fabric and have enough left over to make at least another bikini - maybe in a different style.

My review:

- The 4 way stretch fabric was perfect for this project. It was surprisingly easy to sew with and didn't slip at all. It wasn't slippery against the elastic either.
- I used lingerie cups (swimwear approved) for the bikini top which I would recommend to all small chested ladies, as it creates a nice shape for the bandeau top.
- I altered the back of the bandeau top. The instructions told me to sew the back together, the result being a bikini top you had to slip over your head. Not for me. Instead I took inspiration from Seafolly swimwear and cut the back band so it became a narrow point and sewed in some plastic clips so it clips together at the back. This worked brilliantly.
- The bottoms were cut quite well. The back piece definitely has enough coverage (which I was a tad concerned about because I am pear shaped after all) everything stays in place back there!
- The biggest plus - it fits perfectly and when worn, does not look handmade at all! Saved myself $140 making these!

- The elastic was tricky to work with. What I found hard was stretching the elastic evenly as I sewed it on. This resulted in the elastic appearing to bunch at different spots. When worn however, this is not evident at all and the elastic and fabric is stretched evenly across the body and looks really smooth.
- I tried to be clever and sew the bottoms together in a different order than the instructions, and this resulted in side seams that are not quite perfect.

My verdict - A seriously awesome pattern for anyone wanting to make a bikini. I had this made within half a day, and it looks really cute on! Next time I am at the beach I might even take a picture for you all.

Sam xox


  1. you are really becoming quite a seamstress- doesn't it feel great to save a bit of $$ and get to create a one of a kind piece.
    great job. cheryl

  2. Hi Cheryl! Yes it does feel fantastic saving all that $$$! I think I might be getting a bit addicted to dressmaking, and sadly my quilts are missing me because of this. Perhaps February will be a quilt only month? Sam xox

  3. Oooh Sam that looks fantastic! In my experience, most store bought bikinis bunch in exactly the same way and you can never see it when they're on. You'll be a stunner on Coogee beach!

  4. WOW they look great Sam! Great job. Hopefully you've been getting some warm weather down there to get out and give that bikini a test run!

  5. Thanks girls, I will be testing them out at the beach tomorrow! Sam xox

  6. Wow! You did such a good job Sam! Very useful for Australia -- but probably not so much for England. :-)