Kelly French Terry

Cotton Lycra Blend

Heather and the rest of the Girl Charlee Fabrics team are here to fill you in on the characteristics of different kind of knit fabrics. You’ll now have the (knowledge) power to select the best knit fabric for any project! Girl Charlee Fabrics specializes in knits, with unique selections of the highest quality cotton lycra, spandex solids, cotton jersey, rayon blends plus other specialty knits. They also offer their own designs in the Girl Charlee Fabrics Collection, a wide variety of patterns, specialty woven fabric, twill and denim fabric, vegan leather and more!

Do you have tips for selecting the right knits? Add your thoughts in the comments! Looking for a project utilizing knits or for sewing advice about working with knits? We have it all!

The most common question we receive from customers over email and across social media is, “What knit fabric is the best for my project?” If there is one thing we know well at Girl Charlee Fabrics, it’s knits, so we are always happy to help provide assistance for selecting the most suitable knit fabric for the intended use. There are a lot of guides out there on what knit fabrics are, how they are made and how to sew them. In this post we are going to concentrate on the characteristics of the different kinds of knits, and based on their distinct behavior how to use them best.

There is a wide range of knit fabrics available that are perfect for sewing up many different everyday wardrobe items. T-shirts, sweaters, hoodies, dresses, tops, pants, bathing suits… Even underwear! Below you will find the most popular types of knit fabrics, their characteristics and the best projects for each type of knit fabric. Enjoy!

Cotton Spandex Knits:

Also known as cotton lycra, cotton spandex knit is a knit fabric that has a greater amount of stretch due to the spandex or lycra fiber content blend. These types of fabrics usually have a four-way stretch, making them excellent for “bottom weight” applications due to their stretch and recovery properties. Cotton spandex knit fabrics also come in blends with rayon and other fibers that give a more loose, drapey hand while still providing good stretch and recovery.
Cotton spandex knits are very versatile for use in sewing both tops and bottoms, including leggings, undergarments, socks and so much more. When selecting the right cotton spandex knit for your sewing pattern it is very important to pay attention to the amount of stretch required for the pattern. If the fabric has too much stretch you will not get the desired result from your garment, and too little stretch will also cause problems.

Hacci Sweater Knits:

Sweater knits, also known as Hacci, vary by having a more loopy, open-knit texture than regular cotton knit fabrics, to being almost the same feel and characteristics as regular jersey knits. This makes them very versatile. A lot of people hear “sweater knits” and assume that they are like a wool sweater, but Hacci knits are usually made of blends of cotton, polyester or spandex. Best of all is that they are wrinkle resistant, and sew up just like regular knits!
Hacci sweater knits of the more drapey and open weave variety are excellent for making sweaters, cardigans, scarves, hats, gloves, socks, as well as trendy flowing tops, skirts and dresses. Use Hacci sweater knits of tighter, jersey style weaves for anything you would use a jersey knit for!

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