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  1. #1
    Missouri Star

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    Jun 2013
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    Default Garment sewers help!! Fabric frustration

    I want to try and make simple t-shirts. I figure it can't be that hard right? (right? please?) But I can't figure out what kind of fabric to buy. All the t-shirts my husband has say 100% cotton. But when I hit up the fabric store NOTHING says 100% cotton. And nothing feels like t-shirt fabric.

    Can anyone give me any advice? A place to start?

  2. #2
    Prairie Pointer

    Join Date
    Mar 2015
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    north central indiana
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    Default Re: Garment sewers help!! Fabric frustration

    A lot of it depends on the style of t shirt you want. For regular tees cotton lycra (aka spandex) is good. It's nice and stretchy and stable. If you want something like a tee that has drape (some are bigger around the waist and hips, for example and drape over those areas) or one with any gathering, you want something more drape-y like rayon spandex or bamboo. Regular cotton lycra would make a top like this too tent-like. Some like double or single brushed poly, which is nice and soft and drape-y but can be hot in the summer.

    At Joann's they have a line called Doodles that is mostly (from what I've seen-our Joann's is far away so I don't go often) cotton lycra. Otherwise I've seen the lighter knits in the apparel fabric section-it's hit or miss because they don't seem to organize it by anything other than the fact that it's apparel fabric. I prefer to shop online but I'm not sure if it's okay to post links to the stores here. They don't sell quilting cottons at the websites where I shop.

  3. #3
    Missouri Star

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    Jun 2011
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    Default Re: Garment sewers help!! Fabric frustration

    No help here, just commiseration. I quit garment sewing when I could not find appropriate fabric. Maybe you might have luck googling T shirt fabric.

  4. #4
    The Guild President

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    Nov 2017
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    Default Re: Garment sewers help!! Fabric frustration

    Any lightweight knit that will stretch about 3 inches is workable.

  5. #5
    Missouri Star

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    Oct 2014
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    Default Re: Garment sewers help!! Fabric frustration

    Do you have a serger? Those are what make the nice finished seams in t-shirts. I don't know how much experience you have in garment sewing but from my personal experience I wouldn't start with knits. When I tried it it stretched so much under the presser foot that the seams got goofy. Or maybe it was just me

  6. #6
    Prairie Pointer

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    Mar 2015
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    Default Re: Garment sewers help!! Fabric frustration

    If you do facebook there are several very helpful groups for making clothing. And a few have free tee shirt patterns for members. If you want a list send me a pm and I can get one for you.

  7. #7
    Missouri Star

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    Default Re: Garment sewers help!! Fabric frustration

    Don't forget that if they are for you, you can make tank tops out of any cute quilting cotton. I don't think your hubby would like them for himself though.
    ATTITUDE IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN AN ORDEAL AND AN ADVENTURE

  8. #8
    The Guild President

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    Mar 2017
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    Default Re: Garment sewers help!! Fabric frustration

    Crafty Gemini has some basic beginners tutorials that are pretty good. I'd recommend you give her a try.

  9. #9
    Missouri Star

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    Jan 2016
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    Southern CA
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    Default Re: Garment sewers help!! Fabric frustration

    My oldest grand daughter only likes to sleep in maxi tank top type nighties. That 3" stretch is a good piece of advice. Last summer I picked one print that was super light weight and very stretchy (more like 6"), thinking it would be light and airy for her. It was a sewing nightmare for me, and I used a serger even. But she loved it. This summer... back to normal knits. I much prefer quilt sewing over garment sewing more and more these days.

  10. #10
    Missouri Star

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    Default Re: Garment sewers help!! Fabric frustration

    Cotton lycra.. finally a place to start. Next time I'm near JoAnns I'll pop in and take a look. Thank you!

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