It’s nearly time for beach wear!

I like to have several lots of beach wear and tend to get a couple of new sets every year. For the last couple of years I’ve gone old lady tunic style, but this year I decided I was going to go two piece – not quite bikini – style. I already showed you my first set here with the skirt, which I love, and set out to make something similar from this polka dotted lycra I had in my stash.


Once again I used an adaptation of the Boylston Bra, but this time, I went a bit fancy with the bottoms and put this sort of sash on them, which proved to be a bit of a mistake, as it’s not really visible, and it used a huge amount of fabric, which meant that I didn’t have enough left over for a skirt.

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Sorry about the weird poses, I had a video and had to take screen shots from it. Although now I look at these photos, blurry is good!


I also made a new hat that only goes with this new outfit as it’s black and white polka dots too. This fabric was also in my stash and is quilting cotton. I used this pattern from 1925 from The Vintage Pattern Lending Library, which I won.


The minute the pattern was in my hands I knew it would be too big as it’s for a 23″ head and my head in 21″.  However, the hat crown is really well designed and I just made the darts a little bigger and took 2.5cm off the bottom of the crown (my head is obviously stumpy!) It fits perfectly and I’ve got to tell you that the brim lets no sun anywhere near my face or neck.


I do feel rather anxious about disporting myself like this in public, so I also made a coverup. I used one of those Turkish cotton things that are supposed to be both a towel and a sarong, and which I never used as either, but I adore the gelato colours so it’s a waste to leave it in a drawer.

I folded it in quarters and was preparing to cut the neck out when I suddenly had the urge to do a bit of googling and found this one at Melly Sews. It was exactly what I wanted so I cut the neck with a little triangle at the front, meaning that the neckline could be a bit smaller.


The waist was supposed to be shirred front and back and I remembered that I had some elastic that was pre-shirred. I don’t know what it’s called, I’ve only ever seen it once, which is when I bought it.


It is fabulous. No trying to get a finicky machine to accept shirring elastic in the bobbin, I just laid the elastic on the spot, stretched it out and sewed it on.


the sides are joined at the elastic and I do have a concern that they might get strained at this point and the seams will tear, but so far so good.


I used the cut out from the neck to make a pocket, making this a zero waste make. The pocket isn’t overly useful, it isn’t big enough to hold my phone, but it would hold a key and a tissue, and act as a repository for my hand, so perhaps that’s good enough. I’m standing in a little square which is an Acknowledgement of Country by the City of Geraldton. This is an acknowledgement of the traditional owners of the land and it was they who created these interesting designs.

I have decided that my next bikini will have much smaller bottoms, but I might spare you that sight – if you’re lucky. I also will make another circle skirt for them, but I’ve decided I want black with white spots so I’m off to hunt that down.

These photos were taken on our most recent excursion to Geraldton, where the weather was warm(ish) and the beach delightful and where we based ourselves to explore the wildflowers of the region and here is a little montage for your enjoyment

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19 thoughts on “It’s nearly time for beach wear!

  1. You areso lucky to have the sea nearby where you can wear your new swimsuit. It looks lovely on you. Great job as usual Sue!

  2. I don’t know what you’re talking about, you look great and I can tell you’re working out. I love everything about your outfit, perfect for the beach! Next year I really need to make a hat like yours! Thank you for the inspirational post 🙂

  3. I was looking at these photos thinking ‘that background looks awfully familiar’ and then I realised why 🙂 bathers, hat etc all look excellent! (You always make such beautiful hats) Also great to see home 🙂

  4. I have been looking at your sunshine photos and thinking about our rain – yes, it’s our turn for winter! Nice work with the swim suit – looks great! I didn’t see anything off with the sash. I can’t believe you found “shirring elastic”! That would be so much more useful than trying to get the elastic fed through my machine. Nice work on the cover up too!

    1. Thanks Linda. I thought everyone would tell me that they use that elastic all the time and here’s where you buy it. It’s so good. I shall have to revisit the shop and find out what it’s called. And perhaps buy more!

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