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Four Gorgeous Wrens + a $50 Gift Certificate from Harts

We are seriously blown away by the response to Wren Faire. You guys all shared such amazing and creative tips for sewing knits. Cutting on a pool table? Who would have thought? Sewing with wine? I think some of my past projects could have benefited from that.

Today, in celebration of Wren Faire we have three awesome businesses sharing their Wrens and fabric recommendations.

Ray Stitch

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The gals over at Ray Stitch made not one, but two incredible Wren dresses.

What is your favorite thing about Wren?
We chose two fabrics for Wren. The first is a 100% printed cotton Jersey. We’ve recently had a new range of really lovely prints in this fabric and Wren came out at just the right time to try them. This single stretch fabric has a lovely weight and drape and is fairly stable to sew so worked perfectly.
The second fabric is a classic double stretch, 100% bamboo Jersey. We absolutely love this fabric, it’s gorgeously drapey and very comfortable and flattering to wear. Again, the fabric worked perfectly and gave the dress a more slinky evening look.

What did you find the most challenging when sewing Wren, and how did you approach the challenge?
Wren is one of those great patterns with a huge versatility, working with different fabrics as either casual or smart day wear. The sleeveless option also gives other dimensions – sun dress, evening dress, layered overdress… It’s also easy to construct and doesn’t require lots of fabric.

What are some other fabrics from your store you would recommend for Wren?
We’d also recommend our striped cotton jersey or plain melange cotton jersey The options are endless!

Harts Fabrics

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Dani from Harts sewed up an adorable floral Wren. We have been swooning over her gorgeous fabric choice.

What fabric did you use to make Wren? Why did you pick this fabric?
I used a Nicole Miller Scuba Knit Floral fabric It’s a poly spandex blend that has a fun bounce to it. I chose this fabric because I usually like a heaver knit when making dress to not show all of my (ah-hem) imperfections ;) 



What is your favorite thing about Wren?
I’m a larger gal, with a larger chest area so usually wrap style garments end up making me feel very exposed. The way this wrap worked, it hit at the perfect part of my bust. I think it is flattering, a bit sexy but not scandalous. I can easily wear this dress with tights, a sweater and flats for the office or dress it up with a cute pair of heels and wear it on date night. It’s a really versatile transitional piece to add to your wardrobe. 



What did you find the most challenging when sewing Wren, and how did you approach the challenge?
The most challenging part of this dress was attaching the skirt to the bodice, but I think it was my fabric choice more so than the pattern. The scuba knit bounces back to its shape very easily so gathering it was a little challenging. I just took my time, and lots of deep breaths, and it turned out just fine. Other than that I found it to sew up quickly and the instructions were very clear. I opted out of the sleeves on this dress because I felt it would be too much pattern, but I can’t wait to try them on the next one! 



What are some other fabrics from your store you would recommend for Wren?
When I make the full skirt version again I would make it out of Art Gallery’s Wonderland Owly Boo Knit
I’m in love with this fabric, and I think it would make a cute, comfy casual dress. The knit has a nice weight, not too light but not too bulky for the gathered skirt. Any of our bamboo knits would be amazing too. They are soft and comfortable to wear and drape so beautifully.

For the more structured skirt version I would use one of our Ponte Knits and I’ve been eyeing this Flocked Velvet Cheetah Double Knit. Wren may be the reason that I finally buy some of this fabric and get to sewing with it haha!

The Cloth Pocket

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Melissa over at The Cloth Pocket made a gorgeous Wren out of an Art Gallery Knit

What fabric did you use to make Wren? Why did you pick this fabric?
I chose Art Gallery’s Winged Plumage, which is this beautiful coral color. I love Art Gallery knits, they’re super comfortable and not too heavy for these long Texas summers.

What is your favorite thing about Wren?
It’s I incredibly easy and fast to make. I love sewing knits, so making this dress was fun.

What did you find the most challenging when sewing Wren, and how did you approach the challenge?
The most difficult part would be sewing in the elastic, especially on the larger sizes. This is a difficult task for anyone, not just beginners. I practiced and tried different little tricks. Practicing helped to get me into the groove.

What are 1 – 2 other fabrics from your store you would recommend for Wren?
We have some lighter weight knit that I want to try. I think this will make sewing the elastic easier. I’ve also been wanting to make this dress out of this awesome mermaid spandex. It’s pink mermaid scales, who doesn’t need that dress?!

Pattern Review

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And last but certainly not least, Deepika of Pattern Review made Wren with a fitted gored skirt.

What fabric did you use for your dress?
I used an abstract print ITY knit.

What is your favorite part about sewing with knits?
Where do I begin? I love the fluidity. The fact that the fabric moves (and stretches ;) ) with me is hands down why I sew with knits. I love the bright colors and the vibrant prints available in knit fabrics. The fact that they are easy to sew and care for is just an added bonus. If you look at my projects on Pattern Review, you’ll see 80% of my wardrobe is knits. Can you tell I love them?

What do you find most challenging about working with knits, and how do you approach the challenge?
I actually don’t find knits challenging. I guess I’ve had enough practice. I don’t, however, enjoy cutting them. Sometimes it takes longer to straighten the grain and cutting the pieces accurately than actually sewing the garment. But I do take my time to smooth out the fabric and then use my rotary cutter and mat to cut out the pieces. I have a large cutting table, but sometimes I prefer to cut on the floor because I don’t want the fabric to get distorted if too much is hanging off the table.

I find that people shy away from sewing with knits because they don’t have a serger. Don’t! you are missing out. I sewed on my machine for years before I bought my serger. I still do sometimes. Just make sure you use a new stretch needle for every project. Years ago I wrote an article for Stitch Magazine which has tons of tips on sewing with knits.

If you are new to sewing with knits, try Ponte knit. It’s also one of the recommended fabrics for this dress.

What was the best thing about sewing Wren?
I loved the gored fitted skirt and the gathered neckband. It’s such a lovely design detail and even though they kind of get lost in my print, I think they do give my dress a lovely shape.

To read more about Deepika’s Wren, see her blog post over on Pattern Review.

Now for a giveaway…

Do you want to win a $50 gift certificate from Harts Fabrics or from The Cloth Pocket? Of course you do! Harts is an amazing fabric store located in Santa Cruz, CA. Their online shop features a gorgeous selection of fabric, perfect for your next project. The Cloth Pocket is located in Austin, TX and offers beautiful modern fabrics.

To win just comment below with your favorite knit fabric, and why you love to sew with it.

Haley Glenn

Editorial Director

Five years ago, Haley left the apparel industry to join the world of home sewing. She has been empowering women to sew ever since – first through years of in-person teaching at Sew LA, and now through her writing at Colette. Haley writes tutorials and articles on our blog, teaches sewalongs, and writes and edits for our magazine, Seamwork.

Comments

Laura

October 28, 2015 #

I’ve liked sewing with ponte knits so far since they’re so stable and less liable to show every little lump!

Cindy

October 28, 2015 #

I’ve just begun sewing with knits, but am finding that they are fun to work with. So far, I’ve enjoyed the patterns I’ve made with cotton/spandex jersey to have been the easiest to work with and to wear.

Tiffany

October 28, 2015 #

Like many others, I’m still fairly new to sewing with knits, though I’m really enjoying them in my projects lately. Mabel was my first successful knit project (I had a few failed attempts before) and since then, I’ve really only used ponte and cotton-spandex jersey. I really enjoy the thickness and ease of sewing with ponte, but I’m also excited to try out a wool jersey because I’d love a dress with some warmth since we’ve hit the part of the year where I’m cold all the time.

rose

October 28, 2015 #

Since we are going into the cooler season I really like the woolen knits. I like that they are a little heavier, but still flow lightly.

Elena

October 29, 2015 #

I generally like to sew with hefty and substantial knits like interlock and Ponte. Reading through the comments I’m encouraged to look into other mentioned knits.

Natasha

October 29, 2015 #

I love sewing with Merino. I haven’t yet had any difficult experiences with it and it is so lovely to wear.

Ellen M.

October 29, 2015 #

I like a ponte knit because it is a little firmer which I feel makes it a little easier to sew. Thanks for sharing there beautiful dresses with us – very inspiring!

anastasia

October 29, 2015 #

I love knits!!! My personal favorite is ponte because I love making leggings :) Just imagine— spending a Saturday in your soft, stretchy leggings curled up with your favorite sewing book :)-

Amanda

October 29, 2015 #

I love sewing with and wearing merino jersey. It’s so cozy and breathable, travels well and has a lovely sheen -my favorite!

Ledys

October 29, 2015 #

Beautiful makes, ladies! My favorite knit is Ponte knit. I love how crisp and vibrant it looks, and I find that it gives me the most professional-looking results with my home sewing equipment, still looks great after a few washes, and keeps its shape very well. I love it!

ParisGrrl

October 29, 2015 #

Cotton jersey is my favorite–it handles well and feels great on.

Sandy

October 29, 2015 #

I actually haven’t done much with knits – mostly cotton jersey. I did once make a top from a slithery poly/rayon jersey, and NEVER AGAIN (aside from I cannot wear polyester in any but the coldest climate). One great thing about cotton interlock jersey? NO BIAS! Yeah, it’ll stretch and distort, but it does so about equally in every direction, and then only if it’s hanging off the edge of the table. Unlike woven wool challis and crepe, which I love for wearing but which are anything but stable to cut out.,

Claire Ross

October 29, 2015 #

I am quite new to sewing with knits so I am sticking to ponte and stable knits at present as they are less challenging to sew with x

Lissa Brooks

October 29, 2015 #

If you haven’t already done so, get yourself an evenfeed foot. It makes thinner, less stable knits SO much easier to sew with.

Brenda

October 29, 2015 #

I love the drape of rayon spandex, Also it’s easy to find in some nice prints.

Kristin H

October 29, 2015 #

I love ponte de roma – it’s a dream to sew (the quality stuff) and is so very comfortable.

Lissa Brooks

October 29, 2015 #

I have some ponte di Roma, but haven’t sewn with it yet. When I bought it online, I had nightmares of the horrible double knits and ponte from the 70s, but it’s not like that at all. It’s so soft and sturdy, so it seems like it will be easier to sew with than a lot of knits.

Lissa Brooks

October 29, 2015 #

I like sewing with stretch cotton knits. Ever since discovering the miracle of an even feed foot, I haven’t had problems sewing knits and cotton just feels so good against my skin. However, I am dying to try some wool jersey, I just haven’t been able to afford it yet.

Hilde

October 30, 2015 #

I haven’t sewed knits yet, but I want to try a ponte first!

Abby Olmstead

October 30, 2015 #

My favorite new knit to sew with is the double knit Corsage fabric from Nani Iro. It’s gorgeous and soooo soft. I would only caution that the width is 31 inches, which does limit the patterns it works with.

Kristin V.

October 30, 2015 #

I’ve never sewn with knits before! I’m really looking forward to diving in and making my Wren! Looking to make both a solid black or purple & a fun knit!

Sandra

October 30, 2015 #

Cotton jersey. It’s so comfortable!

Dana

October 30, 2015 #

I love working with ponte. It has a bit more shape to it, goes through the machine easily, and tends to hang a bit nicer on my body instead of clinging. And it comes in so many colors and patterns!

Laura

October 30, 2015 #

French terry all the way!

RavenNemain

October 30, 2015 #

I made a Moneta from an organic cotton/soy jersey that was to die for. I wish I had bought the whole bolt, because it is one of the nicest fabrics I have ever sewn with. Soft and drapey, but still holds its structure.

Allison S

October 30, 2015 #

I love French terry because of its texture–so soft!

Trinity Esola

October 30, 2015 #

Haven’t done much sewing with knits, but I do love petting all the bamboo knits in the Hart’s store!

Marsha N

October 30, 2015 #

So far I have only sewn a pointe knit which was quite enjoyable and fits well. I have a bamboo knit ready so I can see up the wren and I can’t wait to make it.

Melise Gerber

October 30, 2015 #

I haven’t had enough experience with knits to know which ones I like the best. I do know that I hate that tissue weight stuff that stretches out of shape when you even look at it.

I love patterned knits–Hart’s Fabrics has some really cool ones: abstract/geometric (like Art Gallery Succulence Abundance Knit Monsoon or Birch Bear Camp Organic Knit Bear Bois Blue); or mid century modern images (Birch Circa Space Organic Knit Cream). If I could find a knit with a non-floral-y flower pattern ((like Kaffe Fassett’s Lazy Daisy prints or Art Gallery Winged Nesting Blooms Cool quilting cottons) I would jump for joy!

Kathleen

October 30, 2015 #

I am a big fan of Ponte knits since they are so stable and easy to sew with, but I also enjoy cotton / lycra as long as they are a good weight. Sewing with knits is my favorite!

Deb H.

October 30, 2015 #

I love sewing with cotton jersey knits. I love how nicely they drape and give a very flowing look. Although after reading this blog, I am very anxious to try some bamboo knits.

Joanne Roberts

October 30, 2015 #

I’m still learning to sew knits but 1 trick I use helps. I find that using French seams helps keep my seams from shifting.

Rowena W

October 30, 2015 #

I love merino knits – last winter I found a sweatshirt merino knit, which made the warmest, most snuggly knit dress for winter.

Kettle Yarn Co.

October 31, 2015 #

Just started testing out the wool jersey and it is definitely my new fav! Fantastic!

jules

October 31, 2015 #

Ponte knit always comes out the best for me with more fitted garments (like the Laurel dress) but bamboo jersey in a beautiful saturated color wins for drape and sexy fit.

Kate

October 31, 2015 #

rayon cotton jersey blends (with a bit of spandex, of course)

Melanie

October 31, 2015 #

I really like jersey, mainly because its so comfortable to wear. In some ways, knits can be a little easier to work with. They are forgiving and don’t require the same attention to seam finishes. I love the shape of this dress and look forward to my patterns arrival!

Sylvia

October 31, 2015 #

Love that sleeveless version and wanting that owl fabric ;)!
My favorite so far has been a very bouncy stretch jersey with four way stretch that I bought at joanns – beautiful drape and a great learning experience. Thanks for the draw!

fenna

October 31, 2015 #

I like a good cotton/spandex! :)

Sherry

October 31, 2015 #

Anything soft and breathable….prefer natural fabrics…prints can sometimes help with figure flaws…;)

Ali

October 31, 2015 #

I’m new to jerseys so I’ve only tried a few so far….cotton jersey. So, I’m forced to say that cotton jersey is my favourite so far!

Shari

October 31, 2015 #

So far, the only knit dress I have made is the Moneta and I have made 4 of these! I used a ponte knit for two of the them and liked this better than the jersey knit, so I will say, i like the heavier knits better! Can’t wait to try the Wren

Shannon

November 1, 2015 #

I’ve not sewed with many knits, but I love cotton jersey. It’s comfortable, easy to care for, and easy to fit, and since I’m sewing my own clothes, I can make it so much more interesting than an ordinary T-shirt.

Caroline

November 1, 2015 #

I love organic bamboo knits!

Talia

November 1, 2015 #

Ponte ends up being my go-to. It’s so flexible! I can use it with woven patterns because it will hold a dart fairly well, or I can make my favorite knit looks from it and still maintain some structure.

Marsha

November 1, 2015 #

I’m sorry to say that I’ve never actually sewed with any knit fabric! I’m still a novice sewer and have found knits somewhat intimidating.

Karrie Smith

November 1, 2015 #

I really love the AGF knit fabric!! I’m just starting out, so unfortunately I haven’t sewn with knits yet. It’s something I’m dying to try!! I start back to work this week as a sub teacher after having a VERY frustrating month off due to their incompetence with paperwork. It sounds great, but all thst means is one more month of waiting for a paycheck, until I’m caught up in bills to buy fabric. (And this pattern!!) thanks for the chance at a win!!

melissa evans of mahlicadesigns

November 1, 2015 #

I like ponte, because of its woven like stability and stretch of a knit.

Briar

November 2, 2015 #

I love knitting with Art Gallery knits because their prints are so much fun!

Michelle E

November 2, 2015 #

I would LOVE to win some bamboo knit or ponte from Harts! It’s funny… my Mom used to work there… a looooong time ago.

Jane

November 3, 2015 #

For summer, I love rayon/lycra blends because of the the bouncy drape. I made up a version of Moneta this spring in floral rayon/lycra blend that was my go to dress for summer travel. For cooler weather I love wool jersey for its elegance. I agree with others that merino is the softest, though if I could find an alpaca jersey I would definitely choose that! For those who have struggled with knits, try a small zig zag stitch seams and as Deepika recommends always use a stretch fabrics needle.

Ruth

November 4, 2015 #

I haven’t done much in knit, and not any lately that comes to mind.
I would love to have the opportunity to give it a twirl with a dress like this!