Aunt Norie’s Sewing Room
Sewing with knits is very different than sewing with woven fabrics. Once you get acquainted with the actual difference, many think it is actually easier. A few simple rules can help.
You don't need any special attachments or special machine. You will find that always using cotton wrapped polyester thread helps. There are several good brands on the market. The 100 percent polyester is less expensive but not nearly as good because it itself is very apt to fuzz, snarl and break at the needle.
Secondly, you need to use a ballpoint or all-purpose needle. I like the ballpoint best; they actually come sized for heavy, medium and fine points for use with the different weight knit fabrics.
Check out your machine. Make sure the bobbin area is free of lint, etc. Any and all sewing flows along so much easier with a clean and oiled machine. When your needle becomes dull, discard it.
Of course one of the most important steps is to make sure your pattern is sized for knits. That's almost a must. Each pattern, of course, comes with a list of recommended fabrics and believe me there is a good reason.
Remember that old adage: "Practice makes perfect." If you are just learning to sew with knits this is where it really pays off to use some of the scraps you've cut away or, better yet, a worn out or discarded garment of like weight and weave. Usually you will use a longer stitch and stretch the fabric just a little as it goes under the needle - that's almost a must. Knit garments do stretch, so if you use a longer stitch and then stretch the fabric just a little as it goes under the needle your garment seams are going to stretch and give as you move your body around. Your machine may have a stretch stitch feature, most older machines do not.
Get in the habit of leaving your needle down in the fabric as you pause, turn, etc. So fit your garment pieces together pinning them as you would any fabric, then stretch or pull just a little (as you've practiced) as your fabric goes under the needle. Soon you to will love to sew with knits.
Bye now, and god Bless
For those of you who call, I have a new phone number (913) 369-8606. Have a wonderful summer, Aunt Norie, P.O. Box 265, Tonganoxie 66086.