Sewing knits / Video

Video: Five things I wish I’d knewn when I began sewing with knits

In this sewing video I talk about five tips for sewing with knits that I wish someone had told when I began sewing stretchy fabrics. Because I don’t think sewing with knits is easy, at least once you venture outside the more basic makes. I don’t mean to discourage anyone here, but I do want to keep things real. So even tough sewing with really stretchy knits is one of my specialties I still struggle all the time, especially since I always want to challenge myself with more and more complicated projects. So this video is all about understanding that knits behave different than other fabrics and why we need to adapt to these challenges when sewing knits. These are just five things and I would love to hear what your aha-moments and favourite tips are when it comes to sewing with knits. Please share in the comment section and have a great Sunday!


  • JenL
    April 9, 2017 at 5:37 pm

    Good points. My tip is to not abandon hand hemming. I almost always hand sew the hems on knit skirts. It is really the only way to have a truly invisible hem. On straight skirts I use thin lingerie elastic (like flattened fold over elastic) as a hem tape and that prevents the hem from stretching out of shape. Otherwise, I think the biggest challenge is finding fabrics with just the right amount of stretch and recovery for each project.

    • Johanna
      April 9, 2017 at 8:58 pm

      Yay for hand hemming! I love that you do that and I think it is underrated for knits. The great thing about hand sewing is that it has give and is supple, unlike many sewing machine stitches that are so rigid. And I agree that understanding the particularities of different knits is a big challenge, it is something I constantly struggle with. I wish there was a formula, but I guess it comes with experience.

  • Sandy
    April 10, 2017 at 3:11 pm

    I adjust the tension (lighter). And use a longer stitch.

    • Johanna
      April 11, 2017 at 2:19 pm

      I too have found that a slightly lighter tension works well with knits

  • Esther
    April 13, 2017 at 3:55 pm

    I totally agree with you about the serger being a must. I sewed for two years before buying one, and still doubted, but now when I see some garments I sewed then, oh well, they do look homemade on the inside!
    Now I have started thinking about buying a coverstitch,…. but that mus wait until at least I have finished the refurbishment of the room where I sew, and have found a place for it!

    • Johanna
      April 16, 2017 at 9:28 am

      Oh I can so relate to your serger discovery, for me it was the same way for a long time, but then it was no turning back 🙂 A coverstitch is a similar game changer, and the final piece of sewing knits puzzle. Even tough it feels frivolous to buy a machine that basically only sews one seam!

  • Angela
    April 16, 2017 at 10:10 pm

    Love your videos and blog! And definitely – things like a serger are so helpful!


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