The KNITerviews

I think it’s safe to say that when it comes to sheer volume, the amount of woven fabric in my sewing room far outweighs the amount of knit fabric. But. When it comes to picking projects to sew? I find myself gravitating toward the knits. I love sewing with knits! They’re just so dang fast, you know? And when it comes to wearing the things I make? Well, I love wearing knits too (and so do my kids)! They’re just so dang comfortable, you know?

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I’ve wanted to do a series on sewing with knits on the blog for awhile because the posts I do about knits always seem to generate a fair amount of emails and questions. Two questions I get repeatedly that come to mind are:

“Do I need a serger to sew with knits?” (and the related: “if so, which one do you recommend?”)
“Where do you buy your knits online?”

But when it comes right down to it, I don’t always feel like much of an expert. As with pretty much everything else I do that relates to this blog, I haven’t had the benefit of a formal sewing education, so figuring it out myself has pretty much been the way I operate. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t, that’s how I learn, and I’m pretty sure that’s why so many of you like to hang out here. So while I’m happy to share my own experiences, I also thought it would be fun to ask some other bloggers to put in their two cents as well (does it kindof sound like I’m passing the buck? Haha, OK maybe a little…)

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So I put together a list of questions that *I* would want to know, a “KNIT-erview” if you will (get it? har-har sorry you know I can’t live without the cheezy right?), and I sent it to a few other bloggers whose knit projects I’ve really enjoyed. And um, if you didn’t get the email and think you should have, please don’t be offended…I didn’t want to bite off way more than I could chew with this so I kept the list short. I asked if they would write about or answer at least one or more of these questions so we could all learn from eachother:

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And joy of joys, a bunch of them said yes. Yippee!! So I’ll be posting those interviews here on the blog this month. I’ll also try to answer a few of the questions myself, as well as feature some other knit series/books/tutorials/patterns that have been helpful to me. You can find all of the posts in this series on the KNITS! page on my blog.

Play along!
Do you want to do a KNITerview of your own? Please do! If you have answers to any of these questions that you’d like to share, blog about it and don’t forget to show off your favorite knit projects in your post. If you email me the link, I’ll figure out how to put up a list of KNITerviews so we can all share our collective “expertise.” Feel free to steal a button (at the very bottom of the blog) if you like.

Sew along!
Even if you don’t do a post of your own, I hope you’ll be inspired to sew something new with knits or try a new technique. I really love reading these types of posts on other blogs and I hope you’ll enjoy the series!

What questions would you add to the list? What question are you most interested in the answer to?

And is there anything else you would like to see in this knit series (hey it’s not often I offer up the open invitation, might as well say it if you want it)?

30 thoughts on “The KNITerviews

  1. This sounds like a very good series… We are definitely a knit-wearing family too, and I am eager to read and learn, thanks Rae for this brilliant idea !

  2. yea I would love to learn about this subject. I have to sewn with knits mostly becuase I have a old machine It only goes in a straight line and Im not sure about doing it with that type of machine. If there is any advice about doing so that would be great!

  3. can’t wait to learn more – this is one area i’d really like to improve on this year. i even have patterns sitting around… and knits… what about a sewalong with a t for two pattern?

  4. this series sounds fabulous as i love sewing up outfits with knits and am always eager to learn more! :) i think because i’m so naive and a novice sewer, i didn’t realize that sewing with knit was supposed to be different from sewing with wovens so i just sewed like i normally do and followed directions that came with the patterns i purchased (lil blue boo patterns gave great tips on sewing with knits). ha ha ha! so far, it’s all worked out. but, the one thing that i would love to know from “expert” knit sewers would be tips on how to lay out the knit fabric and cut it. since the fabric is so “flexible,” i always have such a hard time laying out yardage of knit fabric “evenly” and straight (i sew a lot with old t-shirts, but there are times when i also use yardage of knits) so the grain isn’t all crooked. because it’s so stretchy, it seems to take me forever to get it just right (so stressful). never mind that laying out fabric and cutting are the couple things about sewing that cause me anxiety. ha! with knit, it just adds another layer of “ugh” to the whole laying out and cutting process. :P otherwise, i love sewing with knits. :)

    can’t wait to read the interviews! :)

    happy new year to you! :)

  5. Shannon hit the nail on the head with her question(s). How best to work with knits on the cutting table is a big question for me!

  6. Yay! I, too, love knits, but am skeptical about sewing them. One of the Christmas presents I made this year involved do a pseudo-applique with a knit fabric letter cut out onto a woven fabric pillow cover. My savior? Prudent Baby! They have a How to Sew Knits 101 post that was incredibly helpful. The pillow turned out better than I could have dreamed – it was my 5th ever sewing project & first attempt at sewing with knit fabric :)

    The post is at http://www.prudentbaby.com/2011/09/how-to-sew-knit-fabrics-sewing-with.html if you want to check it out.

  7. This is great! I downloaded your instructions for your “Angel Top” a while back, but have been too scared to try it with knits, so I’m excited to see what everyone says and hopefully get some confidence to try it out!

  8. Really looking forward to this series! I have sewn a few knit projects, but they have never turned out quite the way I saw them in my head. One thing I would love to see is a post with some tutorials for knit clothing – it’s so nice to have lots of things to look at in one place. Thanks for doing these interviews!

  9. I love knits, they are perfect in my humble view, for a new sewer. You gain confidence because your item isn’t fiddly as with cotton patterns. Using knit scraps is a lot easier as well, kids love track pants with cuffs or trims made from left over pieces from another clothing item. Patterns are also well explained, Kwiksew is one of my favourites, their sizing is spot on (usually), but like all patterns, look past the drab boring fabrics they usually use on the front of the packets, and visualise something a bit brighter and more up to date. I have had wonderful experiences with the http://www.thefabricfairy.com/ . If your scared of using knits, face your fears, I can guarantee, you will be come eager to create more family items, and you will wonder why unearth you never did it before :)
    (sorry to have waffled).

  10. Great idea for a series. I can’t wait to read. I’m in the market for a serger, so I’m particularly interested in what folks have to say about purchasing one.

  11. Hurray! Can hardly wait for the postings on knits! My mom was FANTASTIC sewing with knits… but she passed away over 27 years ago and my boys were young so I wasn’t much into sewing the clothes I now want to make for myself… AND my granddaughters!

  12. Oh my gosh, THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!! This could not have come at a better time! My sweet hubby got me a serger for Christmas but I still have not used it, even though I’ve been wanting one for years! I am too scared of threading it and knowing how to use it, so this is PERFECT! Thank you so much!
    P.S. I do have a lot of questions about knits, but most of my questions are about my serger. Hopefully you will have some serger hints in the Kniterviews!

  13. Rae, this is a great idea! I’ve always been curious about sewing with knits, but am TERRIFIED of them. This series is one I will definitely be reading. Thank you!

  14. Very much looking forward to this! Here are my questions: knit prep before cutting – washing, ironing, etc and basic info on different types of knits- I’m clueless and dying to know what is used when and where! I’m also echoing the cutting questions too! Thank you!

  15. I love these posts. I am a fan of knit too. Its so forgiving of mistakes. Using a stretch needle is important and I am sure a walking foot would help but I have a cheapy machine with a regular foot and it works just fine.

    I would love to see the charlie dress sewn up in a knit!

  16. thank you, thank you, thank you for doing this series! i too love wearing knits (who in their right mind would say no to stretch?) but have had some hideously bad experiences with sewing them involving puckering and ugly stretching in the wrong direction. my perfectionist self has given up out of sheer frustration before i threw my machines across the room. here’s hoping this series gives me courage. thanks a million rae!

  17. i was petrified of knits until i saw Patty Young’s knits… they were too cute to resist and they’re a good quality which makes them easy to work with… cheap knits are MUCH harder.

    • so true — I’m finding more and more that that is true for almost everything sewing related — if you can pay just a little more for x (fabric, machine, thread, patterns) it makes everything SO much easier!

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