The Perks of Sewing with Knit Fabrics

Image of three t-shirts on a white table: a black one, a blue one with white cats, and a gray one with black cats.
Knit Tees

I am sure that you’ve heard this somewhere: Sewing with knits is a pain. It requires special equipment. You must be an experienced sewist before you ever attempt to sew a knit garment. Sewing with knits can seem intimidating, but it is no more difficult than sewing with wovens. And while some knits can be quite a handful, so are the more finicky types of woven fabrics like chiffon or satin. 

I invite you to look  past the list of “horrors” associated with knits and focus on the many perks of sewing with knit fabrics. They might just change the way you sew.

Forgiving Fitting

Image of a dress form with a mauve knit fabric draped over one shoulder
Stretch=Easier Fitting

One of my favorite things about knit fabrics is that they are so much more forgiving when it comes to fitting. Because of their stretchiness, you may be a bit off here or there, and the stretch will hide such imperfections. This is why knit fabrics are great for beginner sewists who are still trying their hand at the perfect fit.

No Need to Finish Raw Edges

With most knit fabrics, you don’t need to worry about finishing the raw edges. Knit fabrics don’t frail, so you will save a ton of time and thread. Just sew, clip, press, and you are done!


Since you are not finishing raw edges, finishing a knit garment is faster than a woven one. You will also save time since most knit clothing does not require zippers, buttons, or other closure types.


Detail image of black Ponte knit fabric with white polka dots
Polka Dot Ponte Knit, An Example of Stable Knit Fabric

Knit fabrics get a bad rep as too slinky or stretchy, but the truth is that many knits are stable enough to face off against wovens. If you don’t feel ready to work with the stretchier kinds, go for Ponte, scuba, double knit, or sweater knits. Just remember that the more stable it is, the less forgiving the knit will be.


No, you don’t need a serger to sew knit fabrics. And no, you don’t need a coverstitch to hem them. As long as your sewing machine can sew a zigzag stitch and you know how to switch the needle in your machine, you are ready to hit those knits! You will need a jersey or ballpoint needle for construction and a double needle for hemming, but these can be easily purchased at any sewing store.

Still Fear the Knits?

If you still feel a bit uneasy around knits, I’d love to invite you to join my very first online sewing course, The T-shirt Workshop. Fill the form below, and I’ll keep you informed of when the course will be live.

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