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Fabrics with 50% Stretch

 A customer emailed: “I’m new to stretch sewing so unsure of the type of fabric I should be looking for. My pattern calls for a knit with 50% stretch”.

One of the attractions of sewing with knit fabrics is that you can be flexible in matching fabric and pattern.

For example, a pattern may be designed for low stretch knits. You can actually use the pattern with medium and even high stretch knits – all it means is that you may need to try on the garment before hemming, and run it in if it’s a bit loose. We do this all the time.

We even use patterns that Kwik Sew says are designed for woven fabrics. We use low stretch knit fabrics like our Knitwit Ponti and Knitwit Monaco for example.

And at the other end of the scale, where a pattern is sized for a high (50%) stretch fabric, we frequently use medium or even low stretch fabrics – we simply cut out a size bigger than normal, and run the garment in if necessary.

But getting back to the question, type “50%” into the search box above.

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What are Dry Handle Knits?

 A customer asked: “I see the description ‘dry handle’ in some of your fabrics and wonder what it means”.

A dry handle knit handles differently from a normal polyester knit.

A dry handle knit has a very fine surface texture; a normal polyester knit is smoother and softer. This means that the dry handle knit often feels less “synthetic” and more comfortable against the skin. If you were to handle the two fabrics at the same time, the difference would be immediately obvious, and for want of a better way to describe the difference, you would probably come to the conclusion that the one has a drier handle.

Care of dry handle knits is exactly the same as for any polyester knit – both are very easy care, virtually uncrushable – and the use of the word dry has nothing whatsoever to do with dry cleaning.

PS If you want to see what dry handle knits we have in stock from time to time, use our search box and search for “dry handle”.