I’m so excited to introduce you to the Mini Cottesloe swimsuit pattern! I started working on this pattern very shortly after I began work on the women’s pattern. Making my own swimsuits made me extra irritated when I couldn’t find appropriate swimsuits for my girls. After an incredibly frustrating experience trying to find Bunny a bikini that she could swim laps in that was athletic and age-appropriate, she asked if she could have the same one I had made myself. I love it when my kids ask me to make things! So I got to work and from the very first samples, I could tell I was going to love this pattern for my girls.
Mini Cottesloe has been thoughtfully designed with age-appropriate details and active little lifestyles in mind. The views in this pattern roughly align with the adult pattern, but with adjustments to the design for little ones. What I love about this pattern is that not only does it make adorable, practical and comfy swimsuits – but you can use it for so many other things too! By changing your fabric choice you can make leotards, underwear, and trainer crop tops – there are so many options!
Let’s have a closer look at all the views!
View A is a one piece swimsuit with back ties
This is Birdie’s favourite view! View A includes a low back and back ties and is able to be fully lined if you need it to be. You can easily omit the ties if you would like, but for kids, I would recommend keeping them as they are such active little souls that I think the extra security is necessary to stop the straps slipping off when they jumping around.
View B is a high back one piece
This is your classic one-piece swimsuit and you really can’t go wrong with it. This is a fabulous option if your child is swimming laps or you just want something with clean lines that shows off your swim fabric. You can also use this view to make gorgeous leotards for dance classes, and we’ve already had some testers report doing this with excellent results. As with all views you can fully line this swimsuit and instructions are included in the pattern.
View C is a low rise bikini
This is Bunny’s favourite view! Bunny loves wearing a bikini to swim because it’s so much easier for bathroom breaks. Especially when school swim lessons come around every year, it’s much easier to wear under her uniform until it’s lesson time. The bikini top for the mini pattern is a longer line than the adult pattern and provides a bit more coverage to make it child-appropriate. It’s also worth mentioning that the low rise here isn’t as low on the adult pattern, again to make it more kid-friendly. This is a fantastic view for using as underwear and I’ve used the bottoms especially to make my girls so many pairs of comfy undies from my knit fabric scraps. We’ve also used the bikini top to make Bunny some cute trainer crop tops as she is entering that preteen stage of life. As with the adult pattern, this view includes an optional wide waistband if you would like it. I highly recommend trying this view!
View D is a high waisted bikini with bands
Much like the adult pattern this view includes a higher waistline and wide waistband as well as a wide underbust band. As with all views, this one can be fully lined. Birdie is not really a fan of bikinis in general as she doesn’t like her tummy out, so this is her preferred bikini view as it only really shows a small amount of abdomen. So possibly a really good option if you want the benefits of a bikini (easy bathroom breaks) without being too exposed.
It’s also super easy to take the bikini top from View C or D and lengthen it to a tankini OR add a circle skirt or gathered rectangle to the bikini top to make a cute skater dress for summer. Honestly, the amount of hacking potential in this pattern is beyond silly ;)
If you need some extra help constructing your suit, you can follow the Cottesloe swimsuit sewalong as all the steps are exactly the same with the exception of the shelf bra as that isn’t necessary for this age group.
If you’re wondering about how this pattern flows into the adult pattern, as with all my children’s patterns it’s been carefully graded so that once your child has grown beyond the size 12, they should be ready to step right into the women’s size 0.
I love this pattern SO much and honestly wouldn’t want to put my girls in anything else anymore. I hope you enjoy making it up as much as I do! If you’re wondering about the adorable swim lycra I have used for these samples they are all from Ellie Whittaker studio.
We’d love to see what you’re creating from the new Mini Cottesloe Swimsuit pattern! Don’t forget to tag your creations #MNminicottesloe and @megannielsenpatterns to share what you’ve been working on, and check out what everyone else is up to!
Don’t have the pattern yet? Order Mini Cottesloe today!