Sewing Your Knit Clothing:
I like to wear garments that are easy to wear and easy to take care of. In a busy lifestyle I want clothing that I can slip on without a zipper to zip or buttons to button. Since I have traveled in my work, it is a plus not to have to worry with a broken zipper or lost button to replace in my travels. When I have traveled with knit clothing, I rolled my garments and placed them in my suitcase so that they did not wrinkle. I had ample room in my suitcase to pack everything I needed with knit clothing. I simply unrolled them and hung them on the hanger in my room. Knit clothing is easy to take from the washer to the dryer to the hanger without any wrinkles. Knits are soft and comfortable against the skin and fashionable. Tops, blouses, dresses, t-shirts, children's clothing, hoodies, slacks, sleepwear, light jackets and more are made from knits.
There are different types of knits to use for garments. You can find knit fabrics here. My favorite knit fabric is jersey knit. It has give and stretch to it of the right amount. It is a common knit to sew and wear. I enjoy many tops, blouses, dresses, and slacks made from jersey knit. I use the stretch stitch on my sewing machine with jersey knit so that my garment gives with me as I move. The stretch knit is a very small looking zig-zag stitch on your machine. You can check your sewing machine manual to see which stitch is the stretch stitch on your sewing machine. You can use the stretch stitch with sewing a stretch knit by slightly stretching the knit as you are sewing the seam through the machine. If you have a serger, you can also slightly stretch the knit as you are sewing the seam through the serger. You will want stretch in the arm hole seam, the side seams, the sleeve seams if there are sleeves in the garment, and in the garment hem. Your garment will give as you put it on with a seam that stretches. If your seams do not stretch and give then the seams will break as you are stretching the garment to put it on.
You will not want any stretch in your shoulder seams so you will place a one half inch seam tape on the stitching line of the shoulder seam so that there is no stretch in the shoulder seam. This stabilizes your shoulder seam. A shoulder seam with stretch would cause the garment to droop over the shoulders. There isn't any bulk in the shoulder seam by sewing it with seam tape in the stitching.
You will use a sewing machine needle specifically for stretch knits. The package for the needle will state stretch needle or jersey needle on the package. A jersey needle is for light weight loosely woven knits. You can find a jersey needle here. A stretch needle is used for more closely woven knits such as jersey knits or stable knits. You can find a stretch needle here. I change my sewing machine needle for every 8 hours of sewing I do on my machine so that my needle is always sharp and a good needle never effects the timing of my sewing machine. A sharp needle while you sew on your sewing machine will help prevent any snagging on my garment as well.
You will want to use a sewing pattern specifically for sewing knits. The sewing pattern will state what types of fabric to use for the garment you may be admiring to sew. If the sewing pattern states fabrics such as a woven cotton, challis, or some other stable cotton type of fabric then that is not the sewing pattern to use for your desired knit garment. Your knit sewing pattern will state stable knits, jersey knits, polyester knits, etc.
Knits come in varied solid colors and prints. Some knits have luxurious colors and print patterns to them. Knits are in various weights such as light weight, medium weight, or heavy weight knits depending on the season you may be sewing your garment for. Polyester thread is a good choice for sewing a jersey knit garment with. Some knits require interfacing with them, so you will want to choose an interfacing that is designed specifically for knits. The interfacing for knits will feel like a light weight stretchy type of interfacing much like the knit you are sewing. Interfacing for knits is called Tricot. You can find Tricot interfacing here. You will want to use interfacing that match the colors of your knit fabric, such as a dark color knit will require a black Tricot interfacing and a light color knit will require a white or ecru color Tricot interfacing.
If you are a beginner of sewing knits, you can begin with a simple knit project to sew and gradually move on to other more detailed knit projects until you are familiar with sewing knits. There are many easy knit sewing patterns to choose from that make very fashionable tops and garments with. Children's t-shirts are easy beginner project for sewing knits. Once you have the hang of sewing knits for children's t-shirts you can sew many of them in day! You can find knit sewing patterns here.