Using Knit Fabrics for the Pendrell Blouse

A couple of you asked whether the Pendrell blouse would work in a knit fabric, so I went fabric-shopping! I bought two lovely knit fabrics at Fabricana to test out Pendrell in a knit fabric. It’s research, right? I have to find out the answer!

The first one’s a 90% viscose, 10% spandex floral print. I’m planning to test this one in the draped sleeve version. I do worry a bit about pilling with viscose knits, but I just love the print!

The second one is a 95% cotton, 5% spandex heathered grey t-shirt knit. It will be like an athletic grey tee but so much more feminine and fitted!

The key to choosing the right blouse-weight knit is finding a fabric with drape. Hold it in your hand and form pleats or gathers with your fingers. How does the fabric pleat? Imagine the pleats on the shoulder cap and decide whether it gives the right look.

Now, for me, this is out of the norm. I avoid sewing with knits! I like working with fabrics that are stable and firm, not stretchy and shifty. But I can’t say yes, this blouse will work in a knit if I haven’t tested it first myself. Go figure, now I’m excited to make these up! I think the softness of the t-shirt knit will be lovely and wearable, and I love the autumn floral print of the viscose knit.

I also bought jersey needles for sewing with knits. Look for the knit Pendrell blouses coming soon!

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10 Responses to Using Knit Fabrics for the Pendrell Blouse

  1. Funnygrrl September 12, 2010 at 7:32 am #

    I am curious to see the results. Could be a super feminine comfy “t-shirt with a twist”.

  2. Catherine September 12, 2010 at 7:59 am #

    That print is gorgeous! probably a bit beyond me as a beginner but I look forward to seeing how it turns out! x

  3. Karin van D. September 12, 2010 at 8:02 am #

    Gorgeous colours. I look forward to seeing the result of your experiment!

  4. Alexandra Mason September 12, 2010 at 8:39 am #

    Can’t wait to see how they turn out!

  5. Jessica September 12, 2010 at 12:10 pm #

    I love that print! They had it at one of the online shops I frequent, but it sold out before I could talk myself into buying it. I’ve really been into sewing knits lately – they’re quick, and I find that I wear them a lot. But it took me awhile to get used to the ways they are different. Can’t wait to see them!

  6. Catherine September 12, 2010 at 5:55 pm #

    I’m grateful you’re trying this with a knit – I was wondering how that would turn out too!

  7. Sue September 13, 2010 at 3:20 am #

    The fabrics are lovely and I think both styles will work in a knit. I remember seeing on a Sandra Betzina video on knits – her saying that the way to work out how a knit fabric will drape on you is to hold it in your hand, off the floor and then gradually drop it onto the floor. If it pools in a small area then that is how it will drape on your body, very drapey and slim-fitting. If it pools or stays quite firm/stiff then that’s how it will look on your body, quite boxy and not slim-fitting. I think the knits you’ve bought will work wonderfully with your patterns.

  8. Becky September 13, 2010 at 5:17 am #

    I’m really admiring your dedication to your customers already, with your willingness to test these patterns out in a knit–twice, even! Looking forward to seeing the results.

  9. Celkalee September 13, 2010 at 12:00 pm #

    You are a super designer, testing the knits for us is wonderful. I sew with knits often and I think your choices for fabric are a good representation of what is currently available in the market place. I have a piece of jersey that is labeled as “tissue weight” and it needs a project. Let us know.

  10. Tasia September 14, 2010 at 7:32 pm #

    Thanks, everyone! I’m glad you’re interested and excited to see how this turns out. I don’t like knits myself, but I know that a lot of people really like working with them and even prefer them to woven fabrics. So, I will report back soon!
    @Sue: Very good points about picking a knit fabric! Both of these would puddle nicely on the floor – the viscose one more than the cotton one. Thanks for sharing!
    @Jessica: Oh thanks – you’ve had great success with knits recently! This would be lovely on you with your hair colour.