How to Sew with Knit Fabric Panels

fabric panels

I love sewing with knit fabric panels! It’s a great way to get a store-bought yet completely custom look.

Sewing with knit panels

So what exactly is a knit fabric panel???

Panels come in lots of different sizes so make sure you read the dimensions carefully before purchasing. You can view all of the panels I carry here. Panels generally have a larger graphic designed to be the focal point of your project.

A fairly standard size panel is 14″ wide and 18″ tall. Here’s an example:
knit fabric panel

I also offer a lot of double-wide knit fabric panels which are my personal favorite 🙂 These give you enough room for the front AND back of your project. This panel is 20″ tall and 28″ wide.

A panel is used just like any other piece of fabric. If you’re worried about getting the graphic centered, trace out your full pattern piece on freezer paper or tracing paper.

Then lay it over your fabric so it’s centered and cut. I don’t generally take the time to do this but if the graphic just barely fits  it’s a great idea to take the extra time and get it perfect.

This is the newborn size Lullaby Line Bodysuit

What can I use a knit fabric panel for?

Anything you want 🙂 This is your chance to be creative! The most basic option is to use it for a t-shirt, pj top, dress bodice, etc.

knit fabric panel


What if my panel is too small?

You can find great tips for making it work here and here


Another great option is to start with a pattern that already includes color blocking.

The Boardwalk, Maui Muscle Tee and Twist & Shout already include color blocking and work great with panels! My kids are small enough that I don’t need to color block panels to make them work but I like to anyway just to mix things up a bit



Need some more ideas? Make sure you join the Peek-a-Boo Fabric Shop Facebook Group 

Here’s a few inspirational photos to get you started on thinking outside the box with panels!





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One Response

  1. Thanks for the tips! My kids want some variation in the clothes that I make for them, but I’m used to using plain fabrics to make their clothes. I like your suggestion to start sewing with a pattern that includes color blocking. That will make sewing fabrics with block panels much easier.

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