Different types of knit fabrics

Michael Cain

1. Jersey

Jersey is the most common type of knit fabric. To make this textile, both knit and purl stitching are put together using a single needle. Thus, this fabric is also called the single or plain knit. Among the types of knit fabrics, this one is easy to distinguish because of its unmistakable right and wrong side of fabric.

Jersey knit fabric is a common textile used for making basic T-shirts. It is also perfect for draped garments like dresses and tops. It can come in any fiber, we stock wool, hemp, bamboo, and cotton. We also stock tencel, modal, rayon and a little polyester. 

Jersey Knit Fabric Features To Remember:

  • lightweight
  • not so stretchy unless the material has an amount of spandex in it
  • distinct right and wrong side of the fabric
  • edges curls up easily when pulled

2. Rib Knit

Rib knit or sometimes called ribbing has raised vertical textured lines. This textile is created using a double bed knitting machine that has two needles with vertical textured lines. This type of knit fabric is also easy to identify because of its vertical ribs. There are 2 basic types of rib knit fabric based on the sequence of knit and purl stitches. The 1×1 rib has a sequence of 1 knit and 1 purl stitch, while the 2×2 rib knit has 2 knit and 2 purl stitches sequence.

Since Rib knit fabric is more stretchy crosswise and lies flat on one side, this fabric is perfect for making turtleneck clothes, bottom edges of sweaters,  cuffs,  and necklines on clothes. It is also excellent in making mats including rugs and other home furnishings. It can come in any fiber, we stock wool, hemp, bamboo, and cotton. We also stock tencel, modal, rayon and a little polyester. 

Rib Knit Fabric Features To Remember:

  • heavier compared to Jersey
  • generally very stretchy among the 3 basic types of knit fabrics, but the 1×1 rib is more stretchy than the 2×2 rib
  • almost identical right and wrong side of the fabric
  • not so smooth unlike Jersey knit
  • edges don’t curl up when pulled

3. Interlock Knit

Interlock knit is similar to rib knit. Some experts say it is a variation of ribbing because the fabric is created using 2 needles too. It also looks like 2 layers of single knit piled on top of each other. Thus, this type of knit fabric is also called double-faced rib.

When you want to sew pants, skirts, tanks, the best type of knit fabric to use is the interlock fabric. It can come in any fiber, we stock wool, hemp, bamboo, and cotton. We also stock tencel, modal, rayon and a little polyester. 

Interlock Knit Fabric Features To Remember:

  • heavier and thicker than jersey
  • not too stretchy compared to Jersey
  • reversible type of fabric, there’s no right or wrong side of the fabric
  • among the 3 basic types of knit fabrics, interlock is more stable.

 4. French Terry knit

French Terry fabric is a knitted terry cloth fabric that features loops and soft piles of yarn on one side, (usually the inside of a garment), and a smooth, soft surface on the other side. The result is an absorbent, light-weight, moisture-wicking material that's super comfortable to wear any day of the year. It can come in any fiber, we stock wool, hemp, bamboo, and cotton. We also stock tencel, modal, rayon and a little polyester. 

 

5. Fleece Knits

Fleece Knit Fabric is a durable, warm, and stretch fabric with a thick, deep pile. Fleece Fabric dries quickly, making it perfect for active wear. It can come in any fiber, we stock wool, hemp, bamboo, and cotton. We also stock tencel, modal, rayon and a little polyester. 

This is just a beginning to the explanation of knit styles. There are so many, they can have spandex added and that changes the fabric behavior and uses.