Knit Scout Tutorial

Grainline Studio | Knit Scout Tee Tutorial

Are you guys ready for the knit Scout Tee instructions? I’ve made this tutorial using a serger for a majority of the construction but if you don’t have one, or just don’t prefer to use one, you can use a regular machine. If you are using a sewing machine rather than a serger, my recommendation would be to either use a straight stitch with a walking foot and stretch slightly as you sew or use a small zig zag stitch.

Grainline Studio | Knit Scout Tee Tutorial

Step 1 | Lay out your pattern pieces. For knits, since both the front and back pieces are cut on the fold, I like to fold the selvedges to the center creating two folds rather than the standard folding layout which only creates one.

Grainline Studio | Knit Scout Tee Tutorial

Step 2 | Mark and cut your pieces. You can use a scissors or rotary cutter, whichever you prefer. Don’t cut the bias neckline piece, we’re going to use a different method for that a few steps down.

Grainline Studio | Knit Scout Tee Tutorial

Step 3 | Sew your shoulder seams together, press seams towards the back of the shirt.

Grainline Studio | Knit Scout Tee Tutorial

Step 4 | Set your sleeve. I place a pin at both edges and at each notch to make sure the sleeve stays lined up properly while serging.

Grainline Studio | Knit Scout Tee Tutorial

Step 5 | Side Seams! Line up the sleeve edge and hem as well as the underarm seam and serge along the side of the garment. Press this seam towards the back of the shirt.

Grainline Studio | Knit Scout Tee Tutorial

Step 6 | Now for the neckband. Unlike the regular Scout Tee pattern, you’re going to want a shorter neckband binding that isn’t cut on the bias. Cut a strip of binding 1.75″ wide along the cross-grain of the fabric. The length will depend a bit on the stretch of your fabric. For fabrics with a lot of cross-wise stretch you’ll want the neck band to be around 2/3 the length of the neck edge, for fabrics with less stretch you’ll want the ratio to be closer to 3/4 the neck edge. Sew the two edges together to form a circle.

Grainline Studio | Knit Scout Tee Tutorial

Grainline Studio | Knit Scout Tee Tutorial

Step 7 | Align your neck binding and serge around the neck edge. Press the seam allowance and shirt away from the binding. You can optionally stitch around the neckline to keep everything in place. On a RTW t-shirt this is where a coverstitch would be used but I just use a walking foot and stretch the shirt slightly as I go.

Grainline Studio | Knit Scout Tee Tutorial

Grainline Studio | Knit Scout Tee Tutorial

Step 8 | Press up the hems of the body and sleeves and stitch in place. Again, traditionally you’d use a coverstitch for this but I just use a walking foot and stretch slightly as I go. I also find it helpful to lengthen my stitch a bit longer than I would for a woven.

Grainline Studio | Knit Scout Tee Tutorial

Step 9 | I like to trim off the extra fabric above the hem stitching but this is totally optional.

Grainline Studio | Knit Scout Tee Tutorial

Hope you found that helpful! The knit version is a really quick project that gets a lot of wear in my wardrobe. You can find this fabric and the fabrics for all the other Scout Knit Tees I’ve been making on my Scout Mood board here. Don’t forget that the kind people at Mood are offering 10% off your order for my readers until 8/30/13 with the code GRAINLINE at checkout. Perfect for stocking up on those knits!



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44 Responses to Knit Scout Tutorial

  1. gingermakes says:

    Cool! Thanks so much for sharing all your tips!

  2. Brilliant! I would love to try sewing my own t-shirts, and I have the scout pattern idling, but do you have any tips/suggestions for doing this without a serger? I’m definitely not ready to invest in more equipment right now, but I still want to try knits!

    • If you’re not using a serger I’d recommend using a walking foot on your sewing machine with either a stretch stitch or small zig zag stitch. You can zig zag over the seam allowance to imitate a serger or just leave them raw. Since they’re knit they won’t ravel much.

  3. liza jane says:

    I just made two knit scouts, my friend! And I love them. Hopefully will blog about them soon.

  4. Cat says:

    Curious about the changed pattern layout (creating two selvedges instead of one) I do this with a knit dress pattern I have and it reduces the overall yardage requirement. Does it do the same for the scout tee?

  5. Olga says:

    Jen! Thank you so much for posting this. Despite having a serger (and a zillion cuts of knit fabrics) I am always hesitant to sew with knits, but your tutorial and the scout pattern are giving me new confidence. Quick question: do you use three-thread or four-thread overlock stitch for this t-shirt? Thanks again!

  6. sullivan1970 says:

    Great tutorial. I bought the Scout pattern a while back but have been working through my fabric stash before buying more and none of the woven ones I have seemed to be right for a Scout. I have a knit that will work perfectly though so this has jumped to the top of my “to sew” list!

  7. Joy says:

    Does the pattern sizing change for knits? Really cute pattern with
    many possibilities.

  8. Jess says:

    THANK YOU! I’ve been wanting to make the Scout Tee in a knit for such a long time, but I wasn’t sure how to go about the neckline! I can’t wait to give it a shot.

  9. Lauren says:

    Ahhh, I’ve been waiting for these instructions! I made one on my own using a walking foot and a small zigzag, but I wondered how you did the topstitching with the collar and the bottom hem!

  10. Chris says:

    Can’t wait to try this…
    I’m also wondering if the pattern sizing would change. Use a smaller size for the knit fabric?

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  13. Erica says:

    Thanks so much for this..! would you mind me asking what serger you use? I’m looking for one myself but there ar so many out there so I’m a bit bamboozled..! do you have any advice? 🙂

  14. Julia C. says:

    Hi Jen, could the same method be used to make a knit Tiny Pocket Tank minus the pocket?

  15. Kathleen says:

    Hi Jen, I am about finished with my first knit Scout. Any tips for the neckline when the edges of the neck strip roll like crazy? I got it on and pressed it out, but it wouldn’t hold up to a close up examination:S Any ideas?

  16. Shar says:

    Thank you so much for posting this tutorial and the Hemlock Tee pattern and tutorial. Last night I made a Hemlock Tee and the previous night I made a knit Scout Tee. I never need to buy another tee shirt again! I have a feeling that these are going to be like potato chips where you can’t have just one!

  17. I’m doing that knit in a dress! And…your tutorial is a good one for those new/afraid of knits. I just sent it to a friend, as she’s terrified of them. Me…I like a good tee too much to be afraid.

  18. Steph says:

    Hi Jen, thank you for the tutorial!!!

    Although, I do have one question: when using knit fabrics, do you still have to machine baste the two rows for gathering on the sleeves? Sorry, I know this is very beginner of me! Also, I do not have a serger, not sure if this makes a difference…

    Thanks so much! And I look forward to making the new long sleeve tee you posted!!!

  19. Shayne says:

    LOVE my scout shirt! I made my first one out of rayon challis and I love it! I just got a serger and am super excited to make a knit scout!

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  24. laura says:

    Thanks for this tutorial! I’m in the middle of making my knit scout, in a super soft green bamboo jersey. But I’m stuck at the neckline. Why is the neckline band so much shorter than the neckline of the shirt? And how the heck do you line it up and sew it properly with such a huge size variation?

    • Amy Peck says:

      I am having the SAME exact issue! I ruined a shirt already, so I hope we get advice from Jen about this! Did you solve your issue?

  25. Amy Peck says:

    I have been struggling with this knit version with the neckband. No matter what I do it doesn’t fit! It’s too small. I ripped two necks out already and am going to give up as the fabric is pretty much trashed. Do you have any tips? I really love this pattern and want to be successful. My fabric is very stretchy but even when I cut it to the exact size of the regular neckline binding it didn’t seem to fit. HELP! 🙂 Should I do a stabilizing stitch on the garment neckline first? Even if I stretch out the neckband to fit it just doesn’t work.

    • Jen says:

      Hi Amy-

      You want it to be too small because otherwise the neckband will bow out and not lay flat. I’m confused as to why the original neckband piece wouldn’t fit in a knit but would in a woven? For the knit you’ll want to cut it on the cross grain so that it stretches, so the strip you cut will run perpendicular to the selvedge. I honestly have no idea what could be going wrong to prevent it from fitting without more information on your fabrics, etc – this is a totally standard method. You might try checking my Hemlock Tee tutorial or Deer & Doe’s free Plantain pattern, they both have the same instructions but perhaps written in a way that may make more sense? I also think either Knit N Bee or Gillian Crafts might have some sort of additional tutorials on their sites, though I know they do the same thing I did. Again perhaps a different explanation?

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  29. Linda says:

    Do you recommend making a smaller size when using a stretch fabric?

    • Sarah says:

      Hey! We sent you an email with our suggestions. We always recommend making a muslin first before cutting into your final fabric. The Scout is designed for woven fabrics. So when change things up you need to do a test run 🙂

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