Sportswear for budding gymnasts

by - 12:32

My little girl has been doing gymnastics since she was just 18 months old. She started in a Mummy and Toddler stay and play session, and quickly progressed to drop and leave pre-school sessions, then into the relevant age groups. She was just 4 when she was selected for a rising stars development group, and her skills went on from there.

It wasn't until a couple of years ago, that the love of gymnastics grew strong, and with it, a love of all things shiny and stretchy... I'm talking of course, about leotards. I've made a couple, they weren't worth photographing! And I've bought her a couple, but we're not a collector of brands. She is growing out of her current ones though, so I might have to try again for her. Here she is on her birthday last summer, in a beautiful custom leotard, made for her by my friend over at Rose Gymwear.

Being in the mini squad groups meant she trained with older girls, who wore crop top and shorts set. So she's been asking for a similar set for well over two years.

I've refused, the same as I have for a bikini. She's just a little girl and I don't think it's quite right.

But that all changed a couple of weeks ago, when BOO! Designs released their free Bralette pattern, for girls from age 2 right the way up to 14. It's essentially a racer back crop top, and even better, it was free! I downloaded it straight away and felt pretty daunted by what seemed to me, pretty technical knit processes involving elastic, binding and the such. Anyway, I gave it a go, and followed the instructions to a tee, and produced a tiny crop top of an evening.

To say Layla was happy when she saw it was an understatement. She has literally worn it for a week (apart from sleeping and gym practice, and her big competition last weekend). I really need to wash it... eek!

I made a pair of MBJM (Made by Jack's Mum) harem pants in short length to go with it. I totally mashed sizes, with a 5 width and 8 length, and was super dubious they wouldn't fit, but they did. I intended them to be knee length, and they are just a smidge longer than that. I need to take some stitches out of the yoga waistband and add elastic. I've never had any luck with yoga waistbands, they always fall down on my girl. I think she is just so slight, she needs the extra elastic in them.

Both items were made in poly knit fabric (I think it was called Aeolian Ripples? by Avoca) from Fabworks. I bought it several years ago with the intention of selling leggings and floaty summer woven tops in my shop. It never worked out, so I still have a good few metres of this fabric left. It makes perfect gym wear!!

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