Tag Archives: how to use your sewing machine

How to use your Sewing Machine for Dressmaking

Last Sunday five students arrived at MIY Workshop armed with new sewing machines that they were determined to get to grips with!

After a few hours practicing some basic techniques and generally getting more familiar with their machines, here’s what they thought of the day:

“A brilliant course if you’ve got a new machine and you need to learn the basics.  Takes the fear out of sewing!” Jayne

“I thoroughly enjoyed the class.  Perfect for beginners who need to get to know and make friends with their machine :o)  Now I can practice these new skills to help me get ready for other classes!  Can’t wait to come again.  Thank you Wendy.”  Jess

“Demystifying – I can go home and actually use my machine now!”  Karen

“Really useful workshop – I’m no longer scared of sewing machines!  Definitely gave me the basics and inspiration to start some projects.  Thanks!”  Harriet

“Wendy was great!  She explained sewing in a simple, easy-to-understand way.  It doesn’t seem so scary now!  I’m ready to experiment with sewing.”  Serena

If you’ve been thinking about buying a sewing machine, have a read of my guide to which one to buy: http://wendyward.wordpress.com/2011/03/17/which-sewing-machine-should-i-buy/

And if you need a few basic sewing tips to get you started, there are lots over on the MIY Collection website, including:

I will be running this workshop again later in the year.  If you’d like to get a chance to pre-book before the workshop is advertised, you can join my priority mailing list by contacting me (Wendy) at post[at]wendyward.co.uk

Happy sewing!

How to Sew Neat Seams – use your seam guides!

Ever wondered what those mysterious markings were by the presser foot on your sewing machine?

They’re seam guides and can help you to get neat accurate seams, here’s how to use them:

seamguidesinfographic

 

If your machine doesn’t have any seam guides – place a strip of masking tape on your machine the correct distance from the needle!

Sunday Workshops for July to December now booking…

collage-studentwork

If you fancy making something like this one Sunday, here’s a list of the Sunday workshops I’ll be running between July and December.  I’ve included in the descriptions whether each workshop is suitable for beginners or not.  Hopefully there is something for everyone!  They’re already filling up, if you’d like to book a place or have any questions get in touch by phone on 01273 693451 or 775951 or email post[at]wendyward.co.uk

Sunday 14th July – Summer Frock Making                                          Fancy making a unique summer dress to take on holiday or just to waft around town?!  Come along to this workshop where I’ll have a choice of dress patterns for you to use to whip up a new frock by the end of the day.  Specific sewing techniques covered will include pockets, zips and facings.  Just bring your fabric and matching thread.  Suitable for beginners and those with a bit of sewing experience.                                                                                                                                              •    Class size limited to 5 people  
•    10.30am to 4.30pm  
•    £45

Sunday 18th August – Pattern Cutting – Dresses                                 Tired of buying dresses that don’t fit properly?  Try this one day intensive workshop to have a go at pattern cutting and draft the perfectly fitting dress block.  At this workshop you will draft a basic dress and sleeve block and pattern and make a toile (sample).   This workshop is only suitable for people who have made clothes from patterns and are confident using a sewing machine.  It is NOT suitable for those who have never done any pattern cutting.                              •    Class size limited to 4 people  
•    10.30am to 4.30pm  
•    £45

Sunday 15th September – How to use your Sewing Machine for Dressmaking                                                                                         Another date for this popular workshop. The day is aimed at beginners to find your way around a sewing machine including; different stitches, changing the tension, the different settings, cleaning, changing needles, changing feet, threads, using different fabrics and of course threading and sewing!                                             • Class size limited to 5 people            • 11am to 3pm             • £35

Sunday 29th September – Skirt Making                                               Want to learn to sew? Fancy a new skirt? Want to make a present for a friend?
Come to this one day intensive workshop and learn some sewing basics whilst making an A-line skirt. This workshop will teach you the basics of reading a pattern (pattern provided, no need to buy one!) and using a sewing machine.
  Suitable for beginners and those with a bit of sewing experience.
  See what previous students have made at this workshop here.                                                           • Class size limited to 5 people            • 10.30am to 4.30pm               • £45

Sunday 6th October – Sewing with Knits                                           Sewing with stretchy jersey fabrics can be tricky on a domestic sewing machine, so at this workshop I’ll show you the best ways to cut and sew knitted fabrics.  I’ll provide you with a choice of patterns specifically designed for jersey fabrics for you to whip up something to wear by the end of the day. All you need to bring is some jersey fabric of your choice and matching thread.  This workshop is not suitable for complete beginners.  See what previous students have made at this workshop here.                                                                                                                                      •    Class size limited to 5 people  
•    10.30am to 4.30pm  
•    £45

Sunday 20th October – Pattern Cutting – Dresses                              Tired of buying dresses that don’t fit properly?  Try this one day intensive workshop to have a go at pattern cutting and draft the perfectly fitting dress block.  At this workshop you will draft a basic dress and sleeve block and pattern and make a toile (sample).   This workshop is only suitable for people who have made clothes from patterns and are confident using a sewing machine.  It is NOT suitable for those who have never done any pattern cutting.                              •    Class size limited to 4 people  
•    10.30am to 4.30pm  
•    £45

Sunday 10th November – Cushion Making                                    Cushions don’t have to be boring! Cushion covers can be a great first project for beginner sewers and provide a blank canvas for more experienced sewers to explore new techniques. At this workshop you’ll learn the basics of cushion making and we’ll move on to ways of making them a bit more interesting by adding piping, using recycled fabrics and customising. Great for presents or to add a splash of colour to your own place.  Suitable for absolute beginners and those who have just started sewing.  See what previous students have made at this workshop here.                                                                                                                             • Class size limited to 5 people            • 11am to 4pm             • £40

Sunday 8th December – Sewing with Knits                                       Sewing with stretchy jersey fabrics can be tricky on a domestic sewing machine, so at this workshop I’ll show you the best ways to cut and sew knitted fabrics.  I’ll provide you with a choice of patterns specifically designed for jersey fabrics for you to whip up something to wear by the end of the day. All you need to bring is some jersey fabric of your choice and matching thread.  This workshop is not suitable for complete beginners.  See what previous students have made at this workshop here.                                                                                                                                      •    Class size limited to 5 people  
•    10.30am to 4.30pm  
•    £45

Sunday 15th December – Pattern Cutting – Trousers                         Tired of buying trousers that don’t fit properly? Try this one day intensive workshop to have a go at pattern cutting and draft the perfectly fitting trouser block. By the end of the day you will have drafted a basic trouser block and pattern and made a toile (sample). You will get the most out of this workshop if you have previously made clothes from patterns and are confident using a sewing machine.
This workshop is suitable for those new to pattern cutting & those who have done a bit of pattern cutting.                                                                                               • Class size limited to 4 people            • 11am to 4pm             • £40

“How to use your Sewing Machine” workshop – it works!

I had a lovely email last week from a student who attended my “How to use your Sewing Machine” workshop last Sunday.

She’s kindly let me share her comments:

“Hi Wendy, just thought I’d let you know that ‘Me and My Machine’ understand each other now and we’ve started a wonderful relationship !
 
Seriously though, I took your advice as soon as I left the workshop on Sunday, set up the machine and threaded it up.  It sews like a dream and have already taken up a pair of ‘stretchy’ trouser hems with that special stitch.  My husband’s most impressed and is calling me his domestic goddess as I have recently embarked on jam making for the first time ever, am knitting a jumper for him, which I hope will be ready for Christmas and now I have my basic sewing machine skills !
 
Thank you for an interesting workshop, I shall be returning for more with you.”

Well, what can I say?  Job done and one less sewing machine languishing in its box at the back of a cupboard, hooray!!