I have come to love sewing with knit fabric more and more. So it’s no surprise one night I looked at my fabric stacks and thought, hmmm…I wonder. You see patterns are drafted and graded for different weaves of fabric, and where the Serendipity Blouse was created with woven in mind I wasn’t sure what results I would get. I am happy to report, the blouse is a dream to sew up in knit! With the tailored fit, medium weight knit fabric works beautifully. And I have two words for you…no bindings! Let me give you the details.
You will want to use a knit fabric that is of medium weight with little stretch and excellent recovery (meaning when you stretch it, it bounces right back). The reason for this is you need a fabric that will hold it’s shape to accent the design of the blouse. The good part about that is this type of knit is a breeze to work with.
So you will want to look for a double knit, double interlock, or a ponte knit. If you are in the fabric store and can’t see a description have a feel of the fabric – if it feels quite stretchy and like a fabric you’d make a t-shirt from then it probably won’t lend itself well to this design.
Notions You Will Need:
- ball point needle (sometimes listed as stretch)
- rotary mat and cutter (optional, but will make creating a lot easier)
There are of course some other notions you could use like a double needle, hemming tape, stay tape and more-but we’re going to keep this simple. All of these can be used when sewing the blouse in knit, but not necessary. If you have it and like to use it – go for it!
Tips For Sewing The Blouse In Knit:
You will want to use a straight stitch with a longer stitch length when sewing with knit. Depending on your machine this may be 3 or slightly longer than you would normally sew with. Your machine may have a stretch stitch that resembles a lightning bolt-you can try this but to be honest I prefer a straight stitch over the stretch stitch on my machine.
You will sew the bodices just as described in the pattern. Make sure when you are sewing around the neckline that you do not distort the fabric by pulling it straight. This will make for a stretched out neckline – not pretty. You may also choose to grade the seams by cutting one side by half to avoid creating a ridge where the shoulders meet.
For the torsos the difference will come in the hemming. The blouse has a total 3/4 inch hem – so really you could just turn and press the hem towards the wrong side once by 3/4 inch and sew. Of you prefer to finish the edge, you can do that on a serger or with a zigzag stitch and then turn and press. Knit does not fray, so no worries there. The other thing to keep in mind is when you sew the side seams you can just use your serger if you have one.
When sewing the torsos to the bodices, I used the exposed seam method. I have found the least amount of time I spend playing with the knit fabric while sewing the better. You could still enclose the seams, just be careful not to overwork the fabric.
When sewing the sleeves you can hem them the same way as the torsos, or even finishing them with a lettuce edge would be fun. When you are setting the sleeve you may find you don’t need to use the ease stitch. I did use it with my blouse, but my testers all forgo it with success.
I hope you give sewing the Serendipity Blouse in knit a try – the results are adorable!
If you have any questions let me know and be sure to come show off what you made in the Sewlosopher’s Circle!