The Perfect Fall Fabric: Brushed Waffle Knit

Hi guys! You’re not going to believe this, but I actually made something for myself! (Yes, please look out for flying pigs today. Lol).

The Madison Cardigan 

This particular project had many firsts:
1. First time sewing and completing a garment for myself.

2. First time sewing with brushed waffle knit

3. First time photographing myself and 

4. First time blogging about it. 

It was a fun experience and I thought I’d share with you a few things I learned sewing with brushed waffle knit.

But first, let’s understand what a waffle knit is.

Waffle knit is a woven fabric whose pattern runs either vertically or horizontally or both that creates somewhat of a square design, hence the name waffle. It’s very absorbent, fast drying, light weight and the squares are like little pockets that hold in heat which makes it the perfect fabric to use when transitioning to cooler months. Not to mention, this particular waffle knit is BRUSHED, so its super soft and luxurious on BOTH sides. When I tell you its luxuriously soft, I’m not lying – TRUST ME! Here are some tips that may be helpful to you:

TIP #1: Definitely Pre-wash but without using fabric softener.

Like all knits, you want to prewash your fabric to eliminate any shrinkage, smells, dust or to keep colors from running. I’ve found that using just a small bit of detergent MINUS fabric softener does the trick. It keeps the integrity of the fabric, and color doesn’t fade. What I like most about pre-washing though, is that it prepares the fabric for immediate wear once its fresh off the sewing machine; it removes chemicals from the manufacturing process, it removes excess dyes, it relaxes the fabric and best of all, it removes the embedded first fold of the fabric – that can be such a pain to iron out. 

TIP #2:  Use the hottest washing and drying settings.

Because knits do shrink under heat, use the hottest water setting and dryer setting when prewashing to eliminate maximum shrinkage. Even after doing this, the waffle knit was still very soft and there was no pilling.

TIP #3: Do not stretch while sewing.

Even though this delicious waffle knit has a 4 way stretch the recovery is not as excellent as a ponte or a spandex knit. Using a walking foot here is ideal, but if you don’t have one, basting the edges you don’t want to stretch like neck line, armholes and sleeves is a good idea. 

TIP #4: Use a twin needle for a beautiful finish.

Twin needles are like the cherry toppers of icecream sundaes; they really do finish off knit garments in a beautiful way. Just note, while using twin needles you must adjust your tension settings; how tight or how loose will depend on the type of waffle knit you are using, and because all machine types are not created equal, this is just something you’ll have to experiment with. 

Now let’s talk about the pattern that made me so excited, I had to sew it for myself! 
This is the Madison Cardigan from Style Sew Me. (ranges from size Sizes included XXS – XXXL – covers sizes 0 – 26 US)

My favorite thing about this pattern is the feminine cut.  Most cardigan patterns have a solid back, but this cardigan calls for panels, that result in a nice curved silhouette; which makes its super feminine and flirty. 

For a place like California, this brushed waffle knit fabric is the perfect fall fabric! It’s soft, cozy, and lightweight. I have plans to make the Madison in more colors, but more importantly my kids LOVE LOVE LOVE ALL THINGS SOFT (especially the boy) and so I’ve already bought more of this super soft brushed waffle knit in these colors for each of us!



Heather Grey

So if you’re looking for a super satisfying, cozy sew I say you need to grab yourself some waffle knit – I promise you won’t be disappointed! xoxo – Candice 

Candice Ayala, from Sewing Portfolios

Wife. Mom of 2. Sewing Blogger & Owner and Creator of

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