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Part 1 to My Fun Mom Swimsuit: Swim & Surf Shorts from Gracious Threads

I want to tell you about an awesome pattern but first I think I should tell you the back story to this sewing project. A few weeks ago Al was here for a short visit and we decided to take the oldest 4 of our kids swimming at the local lake...

I guess I should rewind for a second....I have a Tankini that was gifted to me by Jo, because she didn't like it but I am cheap and that hasn't kept me from using it for the last several years. First it isn't tight enough in the waist on the top so as soon as I hit the water it floats up and then there is the part about the plunging neckline that requires that I wear a camisole so I don't expose myself in more ways than one. The redeeming quality about the tankini used to be the bottoms but since I was gifted the suit they have gotten embarrassingly thin. I thought no worries there is a detached swim skirt that can pretty well cover that up especially for swimming in an algae infested lake, no one can see anything under that water. So for our evening swim I choose the tankini bottoms with swim skirt and a sports bra, camisole and work out shirt. I knew that with taking so many little kids I couldn't navigate the halter grab.

Everything was going fine the kids were having a great time in the lake until all the sudden I realize the elastic on the skirt completely gave way. I think no big deal I will just take the dumb swim skirt off then I realize I can't do that remember embarrassingly thin fabric. So I end up having to tie the skirt tight enough that it can get me back to the car without over exposure.

I am a big proponent of going out and playing with your kids in the water no matter what your shape is or what you look like, because your kids are not going to remember what you looked like just how much fun you had together. I love this article and try and keep it in mind when it is time to have fun with my kiddos.  I realized at that moment where I didn't have a swimsuit that allowed me to be the mom I wanted to that I needed to change that and really look for my ideal "Fun Mom Swimsuit". Al and I talked about it and I told her 1 would be a longish board short with built in underwear so I could walk confidently and comfortably into any pool. It might be a kick back to my basketball days but there is something so comforting about a longer looser short.


I figured this would be the hardest thing to find because I know not everyone is me and some women really want to look sexy pool side. I couldn't believe it when days later Ajaire contacted me about being part of the Summer Swimwear Tour that was going to have Classic Maillot from Call AjaireThe Just Keep Swimming Rash Guard, Briefs and Shorts from The Wolf and the Tree and Swim and Surf Shorts from Gracious Threads. I was ecstatic that the Swim and Surf Shorts even came in a mom size! I knew that it was kismet and that I really needed a deadline to make sure I did this self care sewing.

I am going to be honest I had a couple small problems sewing this pattern. The problems were mine, I forgot to mark where the shorts overlap (and forgot there was an overlap mark) until I got done fretting over where that line was. I blame this on the mix of cutting out early morning so I could avoid slicing the crazy toddler that loves to sit right in the middle of the cutting mat and sewing it with 3 crazy kids around with their little friends. I also was a little confused with how to put on the bias tape but again I am pretty sure that is because of Ryder's constant stream of, "So mom.....(insert ridiculous hypothetical question)?" or looking to see what toddling Wayne has put in his mouth that I have to dig out.


I made 2 adjustments I took out the fly and replaced the waistband with a tall yoga waistband. I took out the fly because I have become too lazy too busy for details lately. I replaced the waistband with a yoga waistband for two reasons: 1. I need a junk in the trunk adjustment for my pants and shorts and I didn't have the brain power to think about this adjustment so with a tall yoga waistband my junk is going to stay un-embarressingly covered and the thought of putting in grommets sounded hard.

It was really fun to see my kids reaction when I put them on. Boston's went something like this, "Mom, I like your shorts. Their really pretty. Now we can go swimming!" and Ryder's went something like this, "So Mom, your shorts are really cool! Can we go swimming tomorrow?"

If you are a comfort queen who just wants to have some awesome board shorts to go have fun with your kids I couldn't recommend this pattern enough.

I have to apologize for no swim pictures in this post, I had my period come this week and that make swimming a total no go. But next week I am sure Fun Mom will be back and we can hit up one of the pools with Dad. And maybe when that happens I will have my perfect top done as well...here's to wishful thinking.

2 comments:

  1. What a wonderful post! This really spoke to me; I've been quite a few different sizes in the past 10 years and I've had many times where my own insecurities prevented me from enjoying moments with my kids. If my pattern helped you out in a small way, I couldn't be more happy!

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  2. I really need to get these swim shorts in both adult and kid sizes! Thanks for the post too. It's always a good reminder to remember that all that matters is spending the time, not looks or anything else.

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