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Make a Polished Knit Blazer with Upgraded Techniques

Try our tips for improving looks and longevity
Threads #221, Spring 2023

There are many benefits to the knit blazer—it’s a real wardrobe mainstay. Consider: It’s comfortable to wear, easy to care for, professional but not stuffy, convenient to take on a business trip, and, in many fabrics, a garment you can wear year-round. 

In recent years, quality ready-to-wear collections offered unlined blazer-style jackets made of sturdy knit fabrics. Examine these jackets and you’ll spot construction techniques that elevate this style. Pattern instructions do not always include these steps, but they are easy to emulate. 

Apply these tips for great results in your next—or first—knit jacket project. Some construction and finishing could be done on the serger for a fast project, but the methods that follow don’t require much time, effort, or special materials. Learn about patterns that lend themselves to knit fabrications, which areas are important to stabilize, stitching advice, plus counsel for more professional-looking hems. 

Select Fabric and Patterns

Consider how the fabric and pattern must work together. Even though it is a knit, in a blazer it still needs to behave like a tailored fabric. Ideal choices should be stable—with a 10 percent to 20 percent cross-grain stretch, and little lengthwise stretch.

tricot underlining
Assess your choice of knit: Underlining a knit can change its hand and make it more suitable for a jacket project.

Spring/Summer options

  • Ponte di Roma
  • Heavyweight interlock knits
  • Cotton/blend double knits
  • Non-knits with stretch

Fall/winter choices

  • Wool double knit
  • Boiled wool
  • Wool melton
  • Bouclé knits

Adjust the Hand

You may find many lovely knits that do not have enough stability or heft you want for a structured garment like a jacket. Here are two ways to “beef up” the fabric’s hand.

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