How far does knit stretch?

Here is a pile of knit shirts I bought on sale from Wal-Mart.  It isn’t easy to come by fun knit prints of good quality.  So when I ran across these I quickly put them in the cart.  I think they were about 2 dollars each. 

Then I turned them into these.  Sorry, it didn’t look this wrinkled when I took the photo! The button tab on the back was an after thought.   The thing I really love about sewing with knit fabric is that it is very forgiving.  However, as forgiving as it is it is NOT forgiving when you have to remove stitches.   When I was taking out some stitches in the back I accidentally ripped a hole in the fabric!  This was when I was 2 seconds away from being DONE.  So I just decided to add this button tab and now it is my favorite part of the skirt! This was definitely my favorite item of the three that I made.

This is another version of the skirt with built-in shorts.  Some how I forgot to take a picture so you could see the built-in shorts attached underneath and that was my second favorite part!  Bummer.

The bottom one I made up as I went along.  That is why it looks like I made it up as I went along:!:)  I was focused on using the leftover sleeves to make pockets.  It didn’t turn out like I wanted.  I’m not sure my daughter will wear this one out of the house but it did give me another idea for making a similar dress again using the sleeves as pockets.  It’ll just need a little tweaking!

Next I took one more shirt that I purchased that day and turned it into this.  I cut off the sleeves and used some extra knit leftover from the shirt to make a binding for the arm holes.  Then I gathered the fabric cut for the middle section of the dress and sewed it to the bodice that I cut out.  This dress turned out to be a weird length. It was almost too short to wear as a dress but not short enough to be a tunic.  I attempted to make some white knit Capri leggings but I made them a little too small.  I’ll have to try it again now that I have a better idea what size to shoot for so they won’t be too tight.  Leggings come together really fast so I definitely see making more of them in my future.  My daughter has worn this and we just paired it with some knit shorts to act as bloomers and it worked out just fine.

I have really gotten on board with the idea of making either knit shorts already sewn into a skirt or making them separately in different colors to be worn under skirts and dresses.  They are so easy to make and it is such a practical way for a little girl to wear a skirt for play.  I used a technique from this pattern to make the shorts come together quickly and it is the same technique I used to make the leggings that I mentioned.

All in all I am finding my self sewing with knit fabric more and being more satisfied with the results.  After all I think most of us find ourselves living in these materials more often than not in our day-to-day lives.  Knit fabric is one of the most comfortable fabrics to wear and I think this is especially so for children.  Now we just need a few more affordable, cute, and readily available options for finding knit fabric on the bolt.  Maybe fabric designers printing on knits will be the next big trend?

One thought on “How far does knit stretch?

  1. I see you are up to your clever tricks again. I would have never thought of using sleeves to make pockets. Genius! what do you think of using knits for pillow covers. It would be a nice soft fabric for a child’s room or maybe bean bags or ottomans in a TV room. Hmmmm . . .

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