When it comes to sewing swimwear, specific considerations and techniques are necessary to ensure a high-quality and durable garment. From selecting the right fabric to choosing appropriate needles and stitches, each step plays a crucial role in creating swimwear that fits well and withstands the elements. In this blog post, we'll provide you with expert tips to help you sew swimwear like a pro. Whether you're a seasoned sewing enthusiast or a beginner looking to dive into swimwear projects, these tips will help you achieve professional results.

  1. Choose High-Quality Swimwear Fabric: To create swimwear that performs well and maintains its shape, opt for high-quality swimwear fabrics with excellent stretch and recovery properties. Look for specialised fabrics like nylon spandex or polyester spandex blends designed specifically for swimwear. These fabrics offer chlorine resistance and provide a secure fit, ensuring longevity and comfort.
    If you're in Australia like us, I love to shop at The Remnant Warehouse, Pitt Trading and The Fabric Store

  2. Select the Right Needle and Thread: Prevent skipped stitches and fabric damage by selecting a ballpoint or stretch needle. These needles are designed to glide smoothly through stretch fabrics. Additionally, use polyester thread or a stretch thread specifically designed for swimwear to ensure the durability and flexibility required for swimwear construction.

    Bailee Bikini Pattern

  3. Reinforce Seams for Durability: Swimwear is subjected to frequent stretching and exposure to chlorine or saltwater. To ensure your seams can withstand these conditions, reinforce them with suitable stitches. A stretch stitch such as a zigzag stitch or a three-step zigzag provides elasticity and prevents seam breakage. Test different stitch settings on scrap fabric to find the optimal combination for your swimwear project. If you have an overlocker/serger, even better!

  4. Opt for Swimwear-Specific Elastic: Choosing the right elastic is essential for swimwear construction. Use swimwear elastic designed specifically for this purpose, as it offers excellent stretch and recovery properties. This elastic ensures your swimwear maintains its shape and provides a comfortable fit. Avoid using regular braided elastic, as it may lose its elasticity when exposed to water and chlorine.

  5. Experiment with Stitches and Finishes: Explore various stitch options and settings to achieve professional-looking swimwear. Overlock or serger stitches are excellent choices for seam finishing, as they provide durability and prevent fraying. 

  6. Enhance Comfort and Support with Lining: Lining your swimwear enhances both comfort and support. Select a lining fabric specifically designed for swimwear, such as polyester spandex, which shares similar stretch properties with your main fabric. A well-fitted lining adds opacity and creates a professional finish, ensuring your swimwear feels great and provides the necessary coverage.
    High Waist Collective Bikini Pattern

  7. Employ Proper Construction Techniques: To achieve a clean and polished look, employ proper construction techniques such as enclosed or enclosed elastic casings. These techniques hide the raw edges and create a professional finish. Avoid excessive stretching of the fabric while sewing to prevent distortion of the fit and ensure a comfortable and flattering outcome. All our swimwear patterns have detailed instructions on how to employ these construction techniques.

  8. Test for Fit and Make Adjustments: Proper fit is essential for swimwear to provide both comfort and functionality. Before cutting into your main fabric, make a muslin or a test version of the pattern using a similar stretch fabric. This allows you to test the fit and make any necessary adjustments before sewing the final garment. Taking the time to achieve the right fit will greatly enhance your swimwear sewing success.

  9. Handle Delicate Swimwear Fabric with Care: Swimwear fabrics are often delicate and prone to snags or damage. Handle them with extra care during the cutting and sewing process to avoid unnecessary stress on the fabric. Use sharp fabric scissors and consider placing tissue paper underneath.


I hope you got some tips today that will encourage you to sew more swimwear! I find sewing swimwear the most rewarding. Once you start, you wont stop!