How to Make a Baby Bathing Suit

by Nicholas Myers on July 28, 2021

In this blog post we are going to teach you how to make a baby bathing suit. If you’re not a garment sewer that is ok as the instructions and pattern are super easy!

We’ve already gone ahead and printed out our front and back portions of this little bathing suit. We served a 4 thread overlock on the top of the casing. You can see here the top and the arms sides.

baby lock soprano

Now we are going to our straight stitch we’re going to be folding under these arm holes and we’re going to be top stitching them down.

baby lock soprano

So we’re using a 90-14 stretch needle and we’re going to be working with this polyester spandex material. We are using a walking foot because we were experiences some issues, and we’re going to go ahead and stitch it down right in place.

baby lock soprano

For Vanessa it was her first time using this material and it’s been a great experience so far so she highly recommends if you ever see anything tat your local fabric shop and kind want to play around with it check it out!

baby lock soprano

All we’re doing is making it so that the arms have a little place to go and we are hiding our raw seams or edges.

Now we’re going to fold down the top portion and create a casing so when we put our little holster strap in the fabric it’s got a place to go.

baby lock soprano

So we will be creating the casing for the top piece and for the back piece. It has a bit of elastic in there. So we’re going to fold down these portions about 3/8ths to 5/8ths of an inch, and then tack it down on a straight stitch. 

baby lock soprano

Now the back piece, like we said before we serged the top with a 4 thread overlock. I’m just going to fold it down 1/2 in and create another casing for the back piece. So now we just go ahead and tack it down on the sewing machine.

baby lock soprano

baby lock soprano

The next portion we will be doing is on a serger and we set ours up for a 3 thread overlock narrow hem. Using this we will be create these little ruffles on the end and we like to use a lettuce edge. See the image below. We will use these ruffles to attach them to the back of our little back peice. 

baby lock soprano 

For this piece when we serge you will be slightly pulling on the edge. In our opinion when making ruffles we want these ruffles to be thick. 

As you serge you’ll want to create a little bit of tension on the fabric and just kind of stretch it out a bit. 

baby lock soprano

When you’re doing this stitch and you stretch that fabric out a little bit when you go through every couple inches and you just give it a little tug you’re pulling on the edges and you create a curl like effect. We think it adds to the dimensions and looks great! This is your lettuce edge and you’ll see this on a lot of baby clothes.

This is before we’ve even gathered fabric before we’ve created a ruffle and you can already see it has a little bit of curve. 

So we are hemming with the top and the bottom and that is what is creating our little ruffle that will be the back piece for our ruffle butt.

baby lock soprano

You can kind of see it go through and every few inches just give it a little love tug. 

baby lock soprano

Now we are going to go back to our sewing machine and set it up for a basting stitch. Real simple straight stitch we’re going to increase the stitch length all the way up. So on this particular machine it’s about 5mm. What we’re going to do is bast down the edge and pull it and we’re going to create ruffles.

On our Baby Lock sewing machine we are doing our basting stitch probably 3/4 to an inch away from the raw edge. 

baby lock soprano

Then you are going to separate the two threads and we’re going to grab our bobbin thread. You can see as we pull it, it kind of just pulls everything together, we’re creating ruffles.

baby lock soprano

 In the instructions you’ll read that you’ll want these to be as wide as the back of your fabric so on this particular piece I’ve got I know it needs to be about 11 1/2 inches. So play with it a bit to make sure it’s long enough. 

Once they’re the length that they need to be in order to attach to your actual back piece, your ring to take the back piece and a fabric pen and an inch above where the leg hole ends you’re going to draw a line. Then 3/4 of an inch above that draw another line and repeat this line one more time. These lines are where the ruffles will lay and we are attaching them to the fabric via a top stitch. 

On this particular fabric you can’t really see where we drew the lines but we are just using our regular sewing machine and we are using a walking foot because we were experiencing some issues with the fabric. We will be doing a slight zigzag because the fabric is a little bit stretchy. We want to make sure that as the baby moves in the water that we aren’t popping any stitches. To the best of your ability with the ruffles on the fabric sew in a straight line, and just walk the fabric through as you go.

You’ll see on the instructions to attach the lower one first and the next line will be 3/4 inch above that and repeat this process.

Once you’re done with the ruffles you’ll have wanted to insert elastic in to the casing that we made. We stitched down one end pulled it through and now we are going to stitch down the other end. This is what gives us stretch for the back piece. So we will just tack it in place, a bit of a zigzag back and forth and we’re good.

baby lock soprano

So now we are going to take our back piece and thew front part that we did earlier and we are going to put right sides together so it looks inside out. We are going to take our basting stitch and go along the sides seams. The bottom of the arm piece and where the back piece met we are going to clip or pin those together. We are going to baste it in place before we take it over to our 4 thread overlock and serge it. 

We’re searching where the bottom piece of the leg starts and where the bottom piece of the back of the leg starts and need to make sure those are even and matched. And we’re going to be particular about where the ends of those ruffles come out of that seam so when we serge it and hone the nice cuts it out it makes it a clean looking seam. 

The instructions state to use a quarter inch seam allowance so not big at all. We are going to be using a 5/8ths seam on our serger so we are just holding this in place. When we bring this to the serger it will provide us with a really nice clean and professional looking seam.  Matching your raw edges than go ahead and sew.

We will now do the same thing on the other side. Matching the raw edges again where the bottom of the arm hole meets the top of the back piece and pin that together. We are going to go down to where the top of the leg starts and pin that front and back together. Of course make sure all of your excess threads are hanging out of your seams so they’ll be cut off when you take it to the serger. Now we’ll baste a quarter inch seam down the side.

At our Baby Lock serger we are set up for a 4 thread overlock and we are going to cut off all of these raw edges on the inside and we’re are marrying the front and back pieces of our swimsuit. 

Front and back pieces are now together and turn the piece right sides out and we have a cute little start to a bathing suit. 

Now we are going to set up out machine for a 3 thread overlock narrow hem again. The same thing that we did with our ruffles by creating a little bit of a lettuce edge we are going to be doing the same thing on the leg. 

As you can see here we have the front and back pieces of the legs together and all we’re doing is serging along and hemming the edge of the leg. We’ll do the same thing we did with the ruffles we’re going to put a slight etch in on this material so it kind of stretches as the machine pulls it through, and it will create a bit of leg curl.

baby lock soprano

The the rolled edge should look like

baby lock soprano

We will repeat this process again on the other side again slightly pulling on the fabric and stretching a little bit as the machine pulls it.

At this point the suit is starting to come into formation with your side seams all married. Now we are going to baste along where we just hemmed and we are going to attach our elastics. So that when baby has their legs in it tugs on their legs. We will be doing this back on our sewing machine.

Using a straight stitch we are going to basting on the highest stitch length that this machine will allow which is about 5mm. We will be basting at about 1/2 inch from the edge. 

When we get to the side seam we want to make sure that we’re not basting any of our ruffles. Once basted on both sides we are going to do the same thing as we did the the regular ruffles that we attached to the back. We are going to take out bobbin thread and pull the fabric and gather it along the edge. 

You’ll see the the direction it says to measure the babies thigh and that’s how long you’ll know to cut the elastic. All we are doing is making sure that the length of the elastic is as long as we’ll need before we tack it down so we know it’s the perfect circumference.

Once you’ve gathered the ends to the length you want we’ll switch our machine back to a narrow zigzag and we are going to tack this down to the basting stitch. You’ll want to position your elastic on top of your basting line in order to tack it down properly.  

Once you are approaching the end of the line make sure the ends of your elastic and your fabric come together. You might have to adjust your ruffles or gathered fabric a little bit. Once your done you’ll go through and pop the stitches.

baby lock soprano

You’ll do the same thing on the other side. You’ll now take your second piece of elastic and match the raw edge, secure it down and following along the basting stitch. Once done you’ll pop the stitches again.

Next you’ll sew the bottom seams of the crotch together so you can imagine we’ve got this little front piece and we’ll be attaching the bottom portion of the suit. 

baby lock soprano

So we will turn the suit inside out one more time and attaching our raw edges and we’ve already set up our serger for a 4 thread overlock. 

At the Baby Lock serger we’ll be matching the raw edges together rights sides in a 4 thread overlock. 

The last thing you’ll need is a two inch strip roughly around 30 inches long you are going to fold right sides together and serge a 4 thread overlock all the way down.

baby lock soprano

In our case we’ve already started to pull it through as we have a safety pin inside attached to the edge and we are pulling it right sides out. This will be the strap to our halter, we will be inserting this to the front casing that we made. 

Once it’s pulled through you can go ahead and chop of the end on the serger and clean up the edges and cut off any strands, and you’re good to go! 


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