First sewing class

January 9, 2008 at 12:24 pm 7 comments

Well, the dressmaking class was lots of fun.

Unfortunately, I was about 20 mins late, due to getting horribly, horribly lost on the way to college from the station. (Flipping 1960s town centres designed for flipping cars, so if you want to walk you can’t navigate from maps very easily and have to keep walking through dank underpasses and deserted shopping centres after dark, grrrrrr, ranty, ranty, ranty, moral highground, moan, moan, moan =) …)

Still, all I missed was the bit where people said what their experience was and what they wanted to achieve. Annoying that I don’t know people as well as they know each other, but at least I didn’t miss learning anything. We were shown how to copy a pair of trousers, and it really, really helped to have someone show me how it all worked! I’ve read a lot about making clothes, but it doesn’t make sense on paper. Now I understand sooooo much better. Yay!

As it was the first class and there were lots of beginners, nobody really had a ‘project’ to get on with, except a few people who’d done the course last term as well, so we all went and had a drink in the cafe and chatted for a bit. The teacher looked at my skirt and said, ‘Ooh, that’s lovely, you could make that!’ so we went back to the classroom and she made me change into the trousers she’d been using to copy, and the rest of the beginners and I all copied my skirt! So I now have a pattern, except she’s going to show me how to shorten it next week. Might see if I could get her to show me how to make it smaller round the waist, ‘cept I might get even more stick for being tiny….

I’m really excited about it all now. I was worried it was going to be all commercial patterns and fancy dresses, but a lot of the emphasis seems to be on copying clothes you already have and later we’ll be doing a tailored jacket and things, so working from measurements as well. Hurrah. Much more economical! There was also a girl who had bought a cheap coat, which she said didn’t hang properly, and the teacher said it was cos it didn’t have interfacing, and that she’d show her how to add it herself. Awesome! This is what I really want to be able to do – mend clothes, adjust them and snap up bargains in charity shops and make them fit me, but I need to understand how clothes work first, by making something from scratch.


Entry filed under: dressmaking course, sewing machine.

Sewing machine waffling Chicken talk…

7 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Mimi Jackson  |  January 9, 2008 at 7:56 pm

    What a fabulous way to teach a class – a problem solving approach is such a practical way to teach! Sounds like you found a great one. I’ll be interested to hear how it progresses.

  • 2. compostwoman  |  January 10, 2008 at 10:56 am

    That sounds a really well taught course!!

    I wish I had done dressmaking like that…..I just felt stupid and confused when we did it at school ( many moons ago!!) because I didn’t understand, so gave up on patterns.

    I can use my sewing machine, but only for altering, taking in etc.

  • 3. Mara  |  January 10, 2008 at 11:48 pm

    That sounds fabulous! Lucky you. 🙂

  • 4. compostwoman  |  January 11, 2008 at 12:42 am


    I came within a shade of getting one of these off Freecycle yesterday!!!

    and the ONLY reason I lucked out was because it was really late and I didn;t think it right to call the chap about it so I emailed instead….and the other person telephoned….

  • 5. Hamster  |  January 11, 2008 at 2:06 pm

    Hi, Mimi! Thanks for visiting and commenting. I have been browsing your blog, it’s really interesting. =)

    Will definitely be writing about my progress on here. Going to choose some fabric before next week’s class… There was some nice pink stuff on sale that I saw the other day. It’s just hard to imagine it as a skirt rather than a roll of fabric…

    Oh, no, CW, how awful to miss out on something because you were being polite and thoughtful. I suppose you can claim some kind of moral victory, but still… =( Could you put out a wanted ad on freecycle? They are often on ebay and freecycle, and I saw a hand-crank one in Oxfam a few months back, so I imagine there must be lots of people who have them sitting around not being used…

  • 6. welsh girls allotment  |  January 11, 2008 at 11:27 pm

    This sounds like a brilliant course – you will have to keep us updated and do tutorials of all your lessons !

    My mother is quite talented in crafty things unforyunately that talent skipped straight passed me so any info would be greatly recieved !!

  • 7. Natalia  |  March 10, 2008 at 1:18 am

    Hi everybody 🙂
    I’m trying to find a place here in New York City to take some sewing classes. I could go to FIT or Parsons and take some CE, but I have two problems: 1. I’m learning english, all those words are new for me and 2. it gives me panic that somebody shouts me again because I can’t understand what they are trying to tell me, trust me! I had an experience of: Don’t you understand me? once and I felt like… terrible… Some suggestion to begin? as soon as I feel confidence about what I’m doing I’ll go straight to FIT with a big smile. Please 🙂


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