sewing for summer: lightweight garments and accessories
As the weather warms up, sewists are eager to start creating breezy garments for the summer. Flowing dresses, skirts, tops, and accessories are all popular choices for this time of year. Cute shorts, sarongs, and swim coverups are also great options for transitioning from outdoors to casual summer situations.
Light colors, prints, and textures are all in style for summer. These fabrics feel fresh and airy, perfect for keeping cool in the heat. When sewing with these fabrics, it is important to use techniques that will allow them to breathe. This means using lightweight interfacing, avoiding heavy hems, and finishing edges with a French seam or rolled hem.
With a little planning and creativity, you can sew up a handmade summer wardrobe that is both stylish and comfortable. You can also use these techniques to create beautiful gifts for friends and family.
Here are some additional tips for sewing breezy fabrics for summer:
- Choose fabrics that are lightweight and breathable.
- Use a light-colored thread that will blend in with the fabric.
- Finish the edges with a French seam or a rolled hem to prevent them from fraying.
- Use a walking foot or a Teflon foot to help prevent the fabric from slipping.
- Press the seams carefully to set them and prevent them from stretching out.
With a little care and attention to detail, you can sew up a beautiful and stylish summer wardrobe.
Why Sew Summer Pieces?
- Opportunity to work with seasonally appropriate lightweight fabrics
- Garments get worn out frequently due to sweat and chlorine damage – easy to replace
- Great way to use up quilting cotton scraps on casual accessories
- Allows personalized perfect fit for swimwear and coverups
- Makes affordable vacation-worthy capsule wardrobe
- Cotton, linen, and rayon fibers keep cool in hot weather
- Fun seasonal prints available are often rare in ready-to-wear
- Portable vacation sewing projects and travel outfit creation
Best Fabrics for Summer Sewing
Lightweight cottons – Lawn, batiste, voile, gauze, seersucker, poplin
Linens and linen blends – Lovely drape and breathability
Rayons – Viscose, modal, lyocells mimic silk in lighter weights
Cotton/silk blends – Luxurious light fabrication with temperature control
Double gauze – Soft cotton loosely woven with crinkled texture
Jersey – Stretchy and breathable knit for t-shirts and dresses
Performance wear – Moisture wicking and UV protective fabrics
Useful Techniques for Sewing Summer Pieces
- French and double stitched seams to finish raw edges and prevent fraying
- Gathering using elasticized casings or drawn up basting stitches
- Narrow machine rolled hems for sheer lightweight fabric edges
- Inserting invisible zippers, tying shoulder straps, using hook and eye closures
- Applying fusible stay tape on necklines and armscyes to stabilize stretch
- Using wash away wonder tape and fabric glue for temporary basting
- Foldover elastic for easy elasticized edges on skirts, pants, sleeves
Project Ideas for Summer Sewing
- Sundresses and skirt sets using bright fun prints
- Tiered maxi dresses and bias cut flowing skirts
- Chambray shirt dresses and jumpsuits
- Casual shorts and cropped pants for active days
- Bags for pool, beach, and summer walks
- Sun hats with chin straps or cords
- Bikinis, tankinis, swim coverups and sarongs
Beat the heat by making and gifting cool weather essentials. Cottons and linens keep sewers and recipients comfortable.