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sourcing girl’s swimsuit fabrics

Over the past few years, I’ve noticed a huge selection of swim fabrics slowly popping up. As sewing swimwear becomes more and more popular, so does the fabric selection become more readily available and easy to source.

1) SWIM SHOP CATICORN – Peek-a-boo Pattern Shop 2) Pink and Mint Cherries on Navy – Cali Fabrics 3) TEAL AND FUCHSIA FLAMINGO  – Raspberry Creek Fabrics 4) Dance/Swim Knit Solid Fabric – Jo-Ann Fabrics 5) SACRED DAISIES SWIMSUIT – The Purpleseamstress Fabric 6) Tropical Nylon Swim Tricot – Blackbird Fabrics

When I first started sewing swimsuits, I really wasn’t sure what to look for in my fabrics. All I knew at that point was that I needed some sort of knit fabric (see my ignorance there ;)). As I dug into the world of swimsuits, I learned that I would need a spandex/nylon fabric. Swim fabric should consist of mostly nylon or polyester (80% – 90%), with at least 10% to 20% Lycra or spandex. Swimsuit fabric should be lightweight, durable and very stretchy with good recovery.

You also want to pay attention to the direction of stretch. Is the fabric a 2-way stretch or a 4 way stretch? If the fabric only stretches from selvage to selvage , without much stretch going the length of the grainline, then it is considered a 2 way stretch. If it stretches both selvage to selvage and the length of the grain, then it is considered a 4 way stretch.

Paying attention to the direction of stretch is important, especially if you plan to sew a one piece swimsuit. A one piece swimsuit has negative ease in both the width and the height, which means it is important to have a fabric with 4 way stretch for a one piece swimsuit. However, if you are sewing a 2 piece swimsuit than you would be able to work with either a 2 way stretch fabric or a 4 way stretch fabric.

Okay, now that we know what we are looking for, where do we go to find it?

Swimsuit fabric has become more readily available to the home sewist the last few years. If shopping your local fabric store you can often find swimsuit fabric with the “performance” or “athletic” fabric.

In addition to having good, durable swimwear fabric, many people prefer to line their swimsuits. For the most part I line my swimsuits with lightweight swim lining fabric. I personally buy my lining in basic nude, white and black. However, you could also line your swimsuit with neutral-colored swim fabric. This option is especially nice if you have swim fabric that is somewhat shear or if you would like extra support.

Nude Swimsuit Lining Fabric – The Fabric Fairy

Some of my favorite go-to shops for swim are online, because they offer so much variety!

*Please Note I am located in the US. I am including these shops on the list because either I have have bought swim fabric from them or because they have a large selection.

Raspberry Creek Fabrics

Peak-a-Boo Pattern Shop

Blackbird Fabrics (Canada Based)

So Sew English Fabrics

Cali Fabrics

Purple Seamstress Fabric

The Fabric Fairy

These are just a few great shops to get you started, but there are so many more! The great thing is, it really does not take a lot of fabric to make a great suit, making it pretty economical to make suits for your little ones 🙂

My Latest Swimsuit – Abernathy Swim Set (Lil Luxe Collection)
a Rafflecopter giveaway

meet our contributors

I’m so excited to be introducing our team of contributors to you guys today! As you may have noticed, I put a call out for contributors a few weeks ago, and I was overwhelmed with the response that we received! Narrowing it down was so hard (seriously SO hard!), but I think we’ve nailed it with these gals!

Everyone here brings something a little different to the group. And I’m excited to see what we’ll all create together. Now let’s have them introduce themselves and join me in welcome these lovely ladies to the KCW team!!

I was a stay-at-home mum for a few years and had the time to teach myself how to make clothes for my daughters. The journey started when I could not find nice clothes for my daughter. Thus I started sewing clothes that have simple designs with quality fabric. Living in the tropics, I love making clothes with linen. There were so many beautiful patterns out there, especially those from the Japanese sewing books. I am constantly looking forward to learning new techniques. Even right now, with a full time job, sewing is so therapeutic for me. 

Blog | Instagram

Hello KCW fans, I’m Roxanne. I live in Massachusetts with my two school-age kids, husband, and two cats. I hate the cold wintery weather of my location, but I can not deny that it gives me an excuse to stay home and sew. At least some months out of the year! Besides sewing, I enjoy other crafty hobbies such as knitting, music, video games, and taking things apart.

As a kid I spent a crazy amount of time in a fabric store that was in the same shopping center as the business my parents owned. I credit a lot of my sewing ability to the employees of that store, the wealth of knowledge in libraries, and picking my mom’s brain for stuff her seamstress grandmother taught her.

I really enjoy coming with projects for my oldest since he has started to take more of an interest in fashion. I’m betting his sister won’t be too far behind. If I’m not sewing for the kids, I also do a lot of sewing for myself. I’m on Instagram as @roxthing.


I’m tara – a Pacific Northwest native with a penchant for good food and drink, homebirthing and educating lots of crazy tiny people, and making unique things for those crazy tiny people to wear. Ive also been developing my love for drawing and painting for a few years. In the past I blogged often at girl like the sea, but alas, I fell prey to the speed of Instagram amid the chaos of raising four young kids. I’ve been a fan of kids clothes week ever since my 10 and 8 year olds were barely out of toddlerhood, and I can’t believe I’m actually part of the team all these years later!

Blog | Instagram

Terra can usually be found on instagram @mamasayssewblog. She is a stay-at-home mama to four wonderful children, three girls and one boy. When she’s not sewing, she also enjoys running, reading, and occasionally crocheting.

Blog | Instagram | Facebook

Hi, I’m Daisy and I live in Belgium with my husband, son Jo (9y) and Femke (7y). I am 35 years old and I work part time as a carer.

I started sewing when Femke was almost 1 year old and I really love sewing dresses for her and other girly stuff. My boy loves cool clothes like sweaters with thumb holes. When I have not sewed anything for them for a while they will ask for something new. It’s so much fun that they like mommy made clothes.

I really enjoy the total sewing process. When I see a picture or a fabric I can get inspired to sew a new garment or outfit. I also love it when you can’t tell that it’s handmade. The final stiches Always are the best ones 😉.

Blog | Instagram

I am Jen Ballif from Gilbert, AZ.  I am a stay-at-home mother of 5.  I have four girls ages 18, 10, 6, 4 and one boy who is 8.    Sewing has been my creative outlet for nearly 8 years.  I started sewing when my son, baby number 3, was born and I decided it was time for me to become a stay-at-home mom. At the same time my husband was going to grad school full-time, so  with the drop in income I needed to make big adjustments to my clothes-buying hobby 🙂  I started teaching myself how to sew by following blog tutorials and using old clothes and fabric found at thrift stores.  I started with sewing clothes for my kids and eventually also started sewing for myself.  Now 8 years later I no longer sew just because I am trying to save money, especially since I have a small fabric addiction 😉  

I love seeing a design come to life and the excitement that comes with trying something on fresh off of the machine.  Sewing is empowering and just by me sewing for my children it is passing that empowerment onto them.  I love taking my kids shopping or looking online for inspiration pieces and then adjusting it to make it just how they want it.  Each piece I make for them they know it was made just for them with their body adjustments and it truly makes them feel special.  

Blog | Instagram | Facebook

I’m Liesel (like the oldest girl in the Sound of Music). I’ve been sewing for over 20 years (gasp!). I’ve been married almost 13 years and have two sons who are my favorite little sewing models. My other hobbies include photography and filmmaking. My day job is teaching Ultrasound school but I really live to sew and snuggle this family.

Instagram | Vimeo

I live in Arkansas, USA with my 11-year-old son and our dog and cat. I have always loved creating and started my sewing business, Just a Boy’s Mom, in 2014.  I sew a little bit of everything from pet items to bags and wallets to clothing.  I’ll try anything and love learning new techniques. You’re never too old to learn more and you can never learn too much! Outside of sewing I virtual school my son and find other ways to create when I have a few moments of downtime which isn’t often 😊. I am honored to be a part of Kids Clothes Week.

Instagram | Facebook

I’m Tami Peterson and I blog over at SewSophieLynn.  I learned to sew as a teenager in Home Ec but mainly kept to the basics of pillows, curtains, and the occasional Halloween costume.  When my first daughter was born I started sewing a few things for her here and there.  As I discovered the amazing world of PDF patterns my love for sewing grew.  I jumped into pattern testing and Kids Clothes Week was one of the first sewing challenges I embraced.  I looked forward to each season and would sew along, forgetting the laundry and dishes for a full week at my machines.  I’m thrilled to be joining the KCW team and can’t wait for what lies ahead.When I’m not sewing, I’m busy running my own taxi service for my five incredible kids ages 16-7.  Between soccer games and dance recitals, my nights and weekends are a blur but I’m trying to cherish every moment! 

Blog | Instagram | Facebook

Hey! I’m Karly! I started my blog, Paisley Roots, in 2012 to participate more in the sewing world. I’ve grown from my awkward-no-idea-what-I’m-doing skills when making clothing, to earning a degree from Pattern Testing and YouTube and have just kept going from there! I first started participating in Kid’s Clothes Week in April 2014 and it’s been a favorite series in my household ever since. My kids are no longer little and we’ve entered the tween/teen stage for most of them but thankfully all of my kids still have a deep love and appreciation for my sewing. I’ll be focusing more on making clothes that fit the teen style and that awkward in-between stage from kid to adult along with how I work with my kids in the process to make clothing they absolutely love. I can’t wait to get started! 

Blog | Instagram | Facebook

Make sure to check back often since we have some big things in the works for Kid’s Clothes Week! And if you’d like to support us, you can always ‘buy us a coffee’ by clicking on the link below.


we’re looking for contributors


If you haven’t checked your inbox yet for our newest newsletter, we’ve got some news for you… One of the first things we’re sharing is that we’re hoping to grow our team this year!! We’re super excited about looking and finding contributors that will represent our vast community and help bring inspiration to others. 


contributor search


If you’d like a chance to be a part of the team and find out more details, please click on the link to the form here 🙂  We’re looking forward to work with you!