Tag Archives: make an a-line skirt

What a Brilliant Skirt Making Workshop!

Yesterday was a super productive and successful day at MIY Workshop.  I had five students for my Skirt Making workshop, who each turned up a little bit unsure, clutching bundles of lovely fabric that they were afraid of making a mess of.

Six hours of focussed hard work later, look what they produced!

skirtworkshop-sept29

Five perfectly fitting, finished skirts ready to wear home and to work the next day.  From left to right, Romy in a very autumnal skirt in a beautiful soft wool from Ditto, Alison’s skirt uses a lovely floral print on a lovely quality cotton/linen fabric from Ray Stitch, Kerry made a lovely Parisian print skirt, Claire went for polka dots which will look great for work and Taruka used a soft lightweight denim.  Three of these students have only just started sewing and these are the first garments they have made.  I think they will be the first of many…!

All five students seemed surprised by what they could achieve in a day and the standard of their finished skirts.  I don’t know why, what else did they expect?!

Here’s what they all thought of the day in their own words:

“I was really impressed with the skirt making course – Wendy is a great teacher and although I was nervous as a beginner when I arrived, by the end of the day I felt very proud with what I had achieved and had a lovely skirt to take home with me.  I would definitely recommend this course!”  Kerry

“A really fabulous day which re-ignited my love of dressmaking.  I love my skirt, thanks very much!”  Alison

“A really great day, I feel so much more confident to sew at home now and have overcome my fear of zips!”  Romy

“I have never sewn for myself and have learnt a lot of things.  I really enjoyed learning and would like to come back again, thank you!”  Teruka

“Thank you Wendy!  I’ve learnt some new skills and made a lovely new skirt – all in a day!  what a great way to spend a Sunday.  Looking forward to having a go at more on my own.”  Claire

More dates for this workshop will be coming in early 2014.  If you’d like to be able to advance book I can add you to my mailing list.  Just contact me (Wendy) on 01273 693451 or email miyworkshop[at]gmail.com

This skirt pattern will also soon be available to buy from MIY Collection.

A Skirt-tastic Sunday at MIY Workshop

5 people, 5 different fabrics, 1 A-line skirt pattern and look at what can be produced in a day!

april13skirtworkshop

We had tweedy, stretch cotton, a tiny floral print, an elephant print and a comic strip print!  All finished, all fitted and three of these students hadn’t used sewing machines since school.  They were also all first-time zip sewers, all of which were inserted beautifully.

Here’s what they thought of their day:

“Great fun, relaxed and friendly workshop and a fab skirt to take home at the end of it.”

“Thoroughly enjoyed it.  It’s really good to have something to wear at the end of the day!  Will definitely be back for more workshops.”

“Wonderful day.  Lovely to have a finished product!  Never made to feel stupid as I was a beginner.  Wendy is very patient and makes a great cup of tea (!)”

“Really useful workshop – individual attention when needed, really pleased with the result!”

“Very satisfying finishing a skirt for myself and Wendy kept me going with cups of tea!”

Note – I’m a northerner, it’s obligatory to be able to make a good cup of tea!  My grandma got me in training from a very early age.

The next tea fuelled Skirt Making workshop is on Sunday 29th September.  Booking is now open.

Inspired by the Great British Sewing Bee?

great british sewing bee

So, after many years of waiting sewing has finally made it onto prime time national TV.  The last time I remember this was when I was inspired as a teenager by the Clothes Show with Selina Scott, Jeff Banks and Caryn Franklin!  Those of us working in the world of sewing have seen a renewed interest in making gathering pace for a few years now, but finally the nation has caught up and realised that there is an alternative to baking and the cutesy perfect world of Kirsty Allsop.

I have to admit I was anticipating the programme with equal amounts of excitement and dread; while over the moon that sewing has made it onto national TV I was also envisaging myself ranting at the programme for presenting the subject in either a patronising or “oh it’s just so easy anyone can do it” way. Thankfully this didn’t happen and I was very pleasantly surprised!!

The mix of presenters works – Patrick Grant will make sure the twee is rationed and is a fabulous bit of eye candy (!), May Martin has super high standards of which I approve and while I thought that having a sewing novice in Claudia Winkleman as a presenter wouldn’t work, I actually think that her lack of knowledge adds to the show – she asks the questions that any sewing novice would ask, but maybe would feel too afraid to ask.  As I always tell my students; there’s no such thing as a stupid question, it usually means that I haven’t  explained something thoroughly enough.

As for the contestants, well, they’ve got in all the stereotypes haven’t they?!  I think they come across really well and there (so far!) appears to be no ruthlessness and they seem pretty supportive of each other.  I did feel for them though, the pressure of some of those tasks was not nice and having to do it all  while being filmed and trying to look your best and occasionally being interrupted by the presenters was no mean feat!  Impressing me the most last night were:

Ann – an amazingly accomplished sewer, who tackled every task perfectly because she absolutely knows what she’s capable of and knows how long things take (the hardest lesson of all to learn in sewing!).

Sandra – who managed to recover from a silly mistake and didn’t crumple under the pressure of it.

Lauren – impressively aware of her abilities, she managed to show off her skills without trying to do too much.  I also loved the fact that she still has the first bit of sewing she ever did!

I did feel very sorry for Michelle.  I think she was let down by her fabric choice in that dress and nevertheless managed to overcome it, admittedly with a dress that wasn’t a perfect fit, but it wasn’t the worst gaff made on the show and  I don’t think she should have left.  Nope, I’m not going to reveal who I think should have gone!!

Judging by the activity on Facebook and Twitter on the subject last night and this morning, I’d say the show is a hit and hopefully they’re already working on series two.  I’d encourage any of my students to apply.  The book is already out: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Great-British-Sewing-Bee/dp/1849492875/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1364978516&sr=1-1 and you can catch up any missed episodes here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p0165nj8

Maybe we should have a MIY Workshop Great British Sewing Bee day……now there’s an idea………

Last but not least here’s our very own A-line skirt success from last night’s class!

alineskirt

Naz came to my “How to use your Sewing Machine” workshop as a complete novice at the start of this year and in 6 subsequent classes has made 2 cushion covers and this gorgeous skirt that fits like a glove.  Having said that she did make me laugh last night when the skirt was almost finished by asking me if there was much more to do and “is there light at the end of the tunnel Wendy?” !!!  She then assured me that she really was enjoying herself!

If you fancy having a go at making your own A-line skirt the next date for my popular Skirt Making Workshop is Sunday 28th April, full details here: https://miyworkshop.co.uk/sunday-workshops-with-wendy/