Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Mommy's Swim Cover-Up {Tutorial}

Here is a repost of a guest blog I did for Coats & Clark. Yes...THE Coats & Clark! Very excited.
The tutorial is a how-to to make your own swim cover up. Enjoy!
Click here for the original at their site.

Hey Ya'll! I'm Jenilyn from Grits and Giggles! I'm a wife and mommy who loves to sew and create for my home and family, especially for my baby girl.

After seeing this swim cover in a recent Victoria's Secret catalogue, I knew I had to have it. But for the price...I wanted to MAKE it!

Here's how to make your very own
Victoria's Secret Swim Cover Look-alike.

This is not a very fitted garment, so you can be liberal with your measurements.

For a small size, I used 1 1/4 yard of lightweight fabric. Cotton gauze, quilting cottons, eyelet or any other summery fabric would work well.

You'll also need
1/2" elastic
1 package double fold bias tape
Matching Coats & Clark thread

I used Coats & Clark Dual Duty thread in Hot Pink

Take your measurements.

 Measure across your chest from elbow to elbow and add 2". This will be your width.

Measure from your shoulder to where you would like the garment to fall. Mid-thigh to knee length is a good length for this cover-up. This measurement is your length.

Cut two rectangles from your fabric following these demensions.

Lay your two pieces together, and find the top center of the rectangles. Using a shirt as your guide, or just estimating if you wish, cut out your neckline. Mine was a slight v-neck. You can make it as deep as you like.

With right sides together, sew the shoulders of your garment using a 1/4" seam allowance.

Hem all 4 sides of your new BIG rectangle using a serger, or by double rolling the hem. This means to fold up 1/4", then another 1/4" to hide the raw edges.

Lay your garment out so you can see and pin easily.

You will be sewing down the two sides with wrong sides together where indicated by the dark lines.

You'll sew approximately 3" in from the sides of the garment. You should start the seam at the middle of your ribcage, and stop sewing about 6" from the bottom. This will leave the bottom loose for easy sitting and walking.

Use pins to mark where you will start and stop sewing, as well as your sewing line. Just sew next to the pins.

Turn your garment inside out. Wrap your double fold bias tape around the waist to see how long to make it. Add 2 inches for ease, then cut your bias tape.

Iron the middle of the bias tape open. Leave the outside folds ironed in to hide the raw edges.

Pin the bias tape just below the underarm holes and sew down both sides of the tape making a casing for your elastic. Leave 2" unsewn on one side to thread your elastic through.

TIP: You have to dodge the "wings" created by sewing down the sides. When you get to those, reach inside the garment and move them to one side. Once that side is complete, flip them over to continue sewing around the inside. You do NOT want to sew the wings down.

Wrap a piece of elastic around your waist, and cut it to your waist size. Using a safety pin, thread the elastic through the casing.

Once it's through, overlap your elastic by 1" and stitch the ends together. Feed that end into the casing and sew the casing closed.

Now use your remaining bias tape to finish the neckline. Tuck the raw edges of your fabric between the bias tape and sew it in place.

You now have a beautifully finished neckline...and a finished cover up!!

Complete with an elastic, cinched waist for a flattering and comfortable fit!

You can always add ribbons, trims, pom-poms, appliques and other embellishments to make your cover-up truly unique to you!

Throw it on and head to the pool.

Cool, breezy, and beautiful.

And soooo much more economical than the store-bought version!

Happy Sewing

I hope you can stop by and visit Grits & Giggles sometime!

Make sure you check out our Sewing Patterns and free Tutorials.


  1. Love this! I'm very tempted to make one {add another project to the list :)}

  2. What a great colour on you! Thanks for the tutorial.

  3. Nice! You did a great job :)

  4. So cute, you did a fantastic job! Thanks for sharing the tutorial :-) I'd be thrilled if you want to share this at my current link party!

  5. I love it!! Great color and choice of fabric. Stopping by from HoH linky party and your newest follower.

    Here is what I shared:

  6. You make it look so easy! I have got to break out my machine and get to stitchin' again!

  7. This looks great! I'm really into cover ups now so I want to make one! Pinning =)

  8. Adorable!! fantastic tutorial! Thanks so much for sharing at uncommon! featuring this today on our FB page! ;) Bonnie

  9. Thank you for sharing how you made this! I just finished my own and I am very pleased with it.


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