I love fall.
I love the golden light of late afternoons, I love the kaleidoscope of colors as the leaves begin to change, and I’m an absolute sucker for all things pumpkin spice. As soon as the calendar page flips from August to September, I’m ready to pack away my breezy linens and bright florals, and pull out anything with deep colors and rich texture.
Liv, of Fenceline Fabrics, asked me if I’d like to make something with one of her new organic knits, I jumped at the opportunity to try out Birch Organics’ Brick Ribbed Knit. It’s deep rusty orange perfection that reminds me of red kuri squash, the glowing embers of a bonfire, and the bricks in my freshman dorm as light streamed in.
This fabric has a nice medium weight to it and is fully opaque. Like most cotton jerseys, it’s stable and doesn’t have a lot of drape. It was a breeze to sew – even without a walking foot (usually recommended for sewing ribbed knits) – I used a regular zig-zag stitch and ballpoint needle for sewing and a stretch twin needle for hemming. The fabric has good recovery and launders beautifully! I haven’t noticed any fading, pilling, or shrinkage.
As soon as I laid eyes on this color, I knew I wanted to make a classic layering piece that would carry me through late summer, fall, and early winter. I chose the Indigo Bodysuit by Laela Jeyne. The pattern features inclusive sizing for bust sizes 31-59 inches and cup sizes A-E, three neckline options, and three sleeve options. I chose short sleeves so my bodysuit would be wearable in the warmer months and the henley neckline because it looked like a fun challenge. My measurements are 54”/51”/59”, so I cut a size 3x E-cup at the bust, graded to a 4x at the waist and hips. The pattern called for 1.5 yards of 60” wide fabric. Since the Birch knits are only 44” wide, I ended up using closer to 2 yards of fabric.
This was my first time making a bodysuit and working with a ribbed knit, and the one thing I forgot to account for in this project is the vertical stretch of my fabric. (If you’ve done a lot of garment sewing, you know where this is going, right? Wedgie city!) The pattern calls for fabric with 50% horizontal stretch and notes the fabric should also have vertical stretch, although it doesn’t specify how much. The Birch ribbed knit has about 20% vertical stretch, which wasn’t quite enough for this project, so I ended up cropping it into a t-shirt hemmed with a twin needle. Tucked into one of my favorite skirts, the fit is more relaxed than a bodysuit would have been. This tee has quickly become one of my go-to wardrobe staples – the fabric is so comfortable and perfectly worn-in – and I’m excited to play around with layering it up once the weather cools down!
I think the Birch Organic Ribbed Knit would work well for patterns like the Seamwork Ace tee, the True Bias Nikko top & dress, and the Allie Olson Kila tank. The scraps would also make great ribbing for cuffs and neckbands — in fact, I think I might use my scraps for the cuffs on a pair of True Bias Mini Hudson pants for my daughter.
What would you make with this ribbed knit? What are your favorite colors to wear in the fall? Let me know in the comments below!