Readers, I’ve gone down the bodysuit rabbit hole. In my defense, it’s not entirely my fault. When a favorite blogger/seamstress (Heather) makes a hot new pattern inspired by another favorite blogger/seamstress (Wanett), I’m basically hooked. Add to that the fact that everyone who’s made one looks super-duper mega-sexy, and, well, I couldn’t help myself.
Just in case you haven’t seen the pattern yet, this here is the Nettie bodysuit. For my first version, I chose the scoop neck/medium scoop back/short sleeves combo, and used a soft, stretchy cotton-lycra blend from Mood Fabrics NYC. This fabric was crazy easy to sew, and feels amazing on. I didn’t make any alterations to the pattern, but sewed up a straight size 8 and it totally works.
I sewed this entirely on my sewing machine, using a narrow zigzag stitch (1.5mm wide x 2.5 mm long) for seams and a slightly wider zigzag (2.5mm wide x 2.5mm long) for topstitching. Yes, I have a serger, but sometimes serged seams feel kind of scratchy to me, and I definitely didn’t want something this close-fitted to be itchy. So if you want to try this but don’t have a serger, don’t be afraid! Dive right in!
I tried to use a scrap of silk as the crotch lining, but I just couldn’t get it ironed into a nice, clean rectangle, so I scrapped that and used some grosgrain ribbon that I had lying around that happened to be the right width. This is probably a little stiffer than desired, but it works and the snaps are concealed nicely.
I never, never, NEVER wear anything this fitted (honestly, I just don’t wear fitted knits… negative ease WHAT?!), but I feel really comfortable in this. When I slipped this on and added the skirt (it’s from American Apparel and I’d had it in my wardrobe for YEARS, but haven’t worn it much because I just don’t have anything that looks right with it) I suddenly felt so, so chic. I immediately thought of Sophia Loren and started swanning around like a crazy person, much to Man Friend’s chagrin. I don’t know why, but the scoop neck and back just make me feel so feminine and pretty, in a weird dress-up way (WHICH I’M TOTALLY FINE WITH).
So, I fell in love and immediately wanted another Nettie in my life. This is where things went off the rails a bit. I made a trek to Spandex House, lose my mind completely, and bought an armload of very questionable prints. I mean, I think I did pretty good considering that I didn’t come back with any jewel/bullet/glacier/pot leaf/French fries/guns AND roses/skeletons on surfboards prints when I had the option for all of those. I stand by my choices and love them all, but I’ve officially entered Man Repellant territory.
I chose my favorite print of the bunch (you can find it here if you’re desperate for the same print) to dive into and sewed up another version, this time swapping out the long sleeves for three-quarter length. This is a four-way stretch nylon-spandex blend, so it definitely feels less like normal clothes and more like weird sportswear (I keep rubbing my belly when I wear this because I feel like I’m petting a marine mammal or something). It definitely feels tighter and less breathable.
I sewed up this puppy on the regular sewing machine, making sure to use a stretch needle (rather than a ballpoint). I used a scrap of cotton in a coordinating color for the lining, which worked really well. It was a super quick sew and again I didn’t need to make any adjustments.
Something to think about when you’re sewing up something like a bodysuit is the stretch of the fabric. This is probably pretty obvious for most people, but if you’re new to sewing with knits, you may not realize how much fabric choice affects the fit. I sewed both of these in the same size and modeled them on the same day, but the printed one feels much tighter than the other because of the varying amounts of stretch in the fabric. If you’re on the fence about if your fabric is stretchy enough, definitely refer to Heather’s post about fabric here. You don’t want to waste time sewing something you feel sausaged into!
One thing I’m not happy about with this bodysuit is the styling. I planned to wear this with my grey Moss mini skirt, but I forgot how low the skirt sits on my hips. It looked completely silly with it! I’m really not loving this with my tight jeans, but I’m not sure how else to wear it! Should I make a skirt similar to my AA skirt (worn with the blue bodysuit)? Or wear it with wide-leg jeans, definitely running the risk of looking SUPER 90’s? Sallie’s bodysuit/jeans pairing looks super sexy, but it’s just not working on me.
A word of warning: as I alluded to before, this sort of garment elicits STRONG feelings from the menfolk in my life. I got the worst review ever from Man Friend:
“It’s a monstrous garment. It’s not your fault. No one should want to wear it… unless you’re about to ride the pommel horse in the 1996 Atlanta games”.
Monstrous? You meant fabulous, right?
Which, PSHAW, everyone knows that only dudes use the pommel horse, so, I mean, who’s obviously wrong here? Of course, it’s no secret that Man Friend Criticism (MFC) just empowers me to go as far as I can in the direction of the loud, tacky, and generally ridiculous, so bring it on, mister! #CLOTHESBEFOREBROS
In other news, today is my third blogiversary! I never thought three years ago when I wrote my first post that anyone would be interested in reading my blog, and I definitely didn’t know how passionate I would become about sewing! Thank you so much to everyone who reads my blog, to everyone who blogs, and to all of y’all who just generally make the internet a happier, sweeter, and more well-dressed place! You guys are the best!
Also, as I was typing this up today, I noticed that this will be my 200th post! Dang, I talk a lot! So, I think a giveaway’s in order, huh? Leave a comment below if you’d like to win your own copy of the Nettie bodysuit! Because I’m nosy, tell me what fabric you would use for your Nettie! I’ll choose a winner at random on Friday, so I’ll close the comments at 12PM EST on Friday 5/16. Yay!
So tell me- bodysuits, yay or nay? And wild prints- yes? No? Maybe? How would you style a bodysuit?