Cotton / Modal Knits
by Shannon Gifford
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  • Cotton / Modal Knits

    If you are in the market for a medium-lightweight knit with a bit of strength, this is the fabric for you! Cotton modal knit has the comfort of cotton with the stretch of lycra. This fabric has terrific stretch recovery; it will hold its shape beautifully.


    Machine wash, cold water. Lay flat to dry. Do take the time to pretreat this fabric. There is a minimal amount of shrinkage in the first washing.

    Needles and Thread:

    Use size 75/11 stretch needles for this fabric. Cotton covered polyester or all polyester threads are the best choices for construction.

    Seams, Seam Finishes, and Hems:

    A short zigzag stitch, (2.0 length, 1.5 width) is recommended for most seams. Trim your seams to ΒΌ" when finished; this provides a more professional appearance, and eliminates the possibility of the seam showing through to the exterior. If you have a serger, use a 3 or 4 thread balanced stitch. Seams do not require finishes, as the fabric does not ravel. Use a twin stretch needle for topstitched hems; this needle will provide a neat finish on the interior at the same time as the hem is created. If you have a cover stitch on your serger, use this to create your hems.


    Lightweight knit fusible interfacing is recommended. Be sure to match the stretch of the interfacing to the stretch of the fabric when applying knit fusible interfacing.

    Pattern Suggestions:

    Tees, tanks, cardigans, pullover tops, camisoles, skirts, skinny pants.

    Creative Possibilities:

    Use your remnants to create accessories such as headbands or wristbands. This fabric also makes a fabulous trim for other knits; the recovery of cotton modal knits makes it perfect for neckline edges and cuffs.

    Additional Tips:

    This fabric lends itself to form-fitted garments; if you have been looking for a fabric with which to make a tank with a shelf bra attached, look no further! Use caution when pressing seams. Lycra and high heat do not marry well. Instead of heavy pressure, hover the iron over the seam and shoot steam at the fabric. Remove the iron from the vicinity and finger press the seams in place. Do fuse interfacing to the hem area of your cotton modal garments. This little bit of extra support will keep the hems looking fresh throughout the life of the garment.

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