It’s day two of the Suit Up tour and I hope you’ve already been thoroughly inspired. Today I’m sharing my tips for adding graphics to your swimwear and a happy little discovery!
The techniques I share work great for embellishing rash guards but they’ll also work well for the front of a swimsuit or wherever you’d love a little something extra. For my kids tops, I turned to two of our go-to patterns: the Hey June Camden Raglan and the Titchy Threads Rowan Tee. I use these patterns often in their everyday wardrobe and they work great for swim tops too. Both of these patterns are slimmer fitting making them perfect for the pool.
I love any chance I get to pull out my Cricut and adding a little personality and pizzazz to their pieces. For these tops I used stretch vinyl and Cricut Infusible Ink. In the past I’ve used Cricut SportFlex HTV and I’ve been thrilled with the results. I use my Cricut EasyPress and their swim tops have held up year after year (until they’ve outgrown them but they still look brand new when we pass them on!). I swear by Teflon sheets when using iron-on vinyl. They add a layer of protection to your garment and also seem to help the vinyl melt into the fabric better. When pressing SportFlex on to swim fabric I set my EasyPress to 305 degrees and do 30 seconds on the right side then flip it and do 15 seconds on the back.
This year I headed to my local vinyl shop, Vinyl Outlet, and picked up these three stretch vinyl sheets. You want to look for stretch vinyl since knits, especially swim, will be stretched when worn. I’ve heard great things about this stretch vinyl so I’m hopeful it will hold up as well as the SportFlex. There were so many colors to choose from that I’d love to be able to match all of the RCF swim fabrics! I designed this digital design and it’s available in the Project Run and Play shop.
For this one, I was dying to try Cricut Infusible Ink. Cricut recommends only using their blanks but that is so limiting. With a little research I found that many had had great results using synthetic fabrics, perfect for this poly spandex swim knit! I did a couple of test swatches and then went for it. I recommend doing all of your embellishing PRIOR to sewing up your pieces. 1- it’s easier to lay our your fabric and 2- it’s not quite as heartbreaking if you mess up!
For this design, I used a graphic available in Design Space and Bright Teal Infusible Ink. I followed the instructions for cutting and fusing the ink (using the Heat Guide here) and it worked beautifully! I love seeing that ink just melt right into the fabrics. I talked to Diana of Raspberry Creek Fabrics and she said the infusible ink process and setting temperature is similar to what they use in their shop when printing swim fabrics so the result should be easy and long lasting.
These both have their pros and cons. The infusible ink will only work on white, possibly light colors, while the vinyl will work on any solid or print. The infusible ink melts into the fabric making it a great choice if you want to add sizing labels to garments without the itchy tag or vinyl. Vinyl is fun to layer and you can create more complicated designs with it. I’m just excited to have options when it comes to creating unique looks for my family!
My little guy got two new suits this year. And I promise he wasn’t as miserable during this shoot as his pictures look! This studio looks out over a busy street and this boy is so car obsessed he hated missing watching them, even for the few minutes it took to take these photos.
His first suit is a Lowland Kids Swim Brief. This pattern is unique because it uses swim knit making is especially soft and great for kids with sensory issues (there’s instructions to fully enclose seams too!). I used this teal tie dye print that I think is perfect for the whole family.
His second suit is Jennuine Designs Cobalt Boardshorts. I like the clean flat front and elastic back. He likes the pockets! I used this Teal Wave Print, another classic print that I think all of my boys would wear.
I hope you’ll follow along all week as these incredible bloggers show off their new swimwear! I promise you’ll be in love!
And make sure to pick up your swim fabrics this week at 15% off with code SWIMTOUR.