Sewing Knits : The Monroe Turtleneck

Posted by The Tall Mama
I am so pleased with how well the Designer Jade 35 handles all different types of knit fabric.  I’ve really put it through its paces, and it has performed beautifully each time!  This make, the Monroe Turtleneck (a free pattern from Tessuti Fabrics) was no exception.
I made this top using a Bamboo knit which is beautifully soft and drapey, but I was a bit worried that it may be hard to sew.  Thanks to the Designer Jade 35’s built in the stitch selector it was a breeze to sew!  I used the recommended stretch stitch for the seams and the overcast stitch for knits too.  Although knits don’t really fray (they can unravel a bit) I still like to overcast the seams to give my garment seams more strength and a neater finish.
Here are a few tips for sewing knits with your sewing machine:
  • Use a good quality needle for stretch fabric. 
  • Use good quality thread.
  • Practice on scrap fabric first; I did a test run of both the stretch stitch and the overcast stitch with a scrap leftover from cutting out my top.  Each knit is different so always use a scrap from your current project.
  • Start sewing a little way in from the edge so your fabric doesn’t get stuck in the machine, laying down some tissue paper at the start of the seam will also prevent the fabric from getting stuck.
  • Use clear elastic or cotton tape in the shoulder seams to prevent your top from stretching out of shape.  I like to sew mine in with the overcast stitch to the wrong side of the seam.
This free pattern from Tessuti Fabrics was really fast and easy to sew.  It is a loose fitting top with a drop shoulder (I made the smallest size and it’s still very roomy) and long or ¾ sleeve options.  I added length to the both the sleeves and bottom of the top because I’m tall.  I like that the turtleneck isn’t too tight and despite the body of the top being roomy the sleeves are more fitted.  I will be making this top again!
Happy Sewing!
Xox Allison

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