My daughter spends less on a T-shirt than I did 30 years ago. Now, that makes you think doesn’t it? It’s so wrong on so many levels. Maybe that’s why I stopped making clothes, they became so cheap. I don’t know when I stopped making most of my own gear. Maybe after I left art college. I made clothes all through my teens and 20’s, I had to. I’m an 80’s and 90’s kid and if you wanted a certain “look” you had to make it because buying it was too expensive and no high street shop made anything I wanted to wear.
Over the years I’ve done a bit of dressmaking and I certainly never stopped sewing but as an adult my makes have developed into being small, quick and effective. Plus, I mainly adapt clothes rather than make them from scratch. Often I will buy something knowing that I can make it work better for me. Maybe make it shorter, or perhaps it needs taking in or sometimes I’ll add a pom pom For me the excitement is the transformation not the process. It’s the transformation that gives me a buzz, they are what make me tick. I like upcycling fabric and am particularly interested in sustainability and the circular nature of sewing.
When I started my sewing classes I was keen to design a syllabus which enabled folk to complete an item each week. I purposely avoided making a garment as they can take a few weeks of two hour sessions. Everyone in class talks about their scary sewing teacher at school who would check every seam and how they would spend a whole term making an apron. Talk about draining all the fun from the joy of sewing. I wanted to smash down that preconception.
My classes focus on inspiring people to sew, to take the plunge to achieve something small and to gain confidence. They may move into dressmaking (I do run a class on how to read a pattern) but I like to think people come to me for some sewing creativity, the art of sewing, to give themselves permission to carve out some time for themselves and to make something nice to be proud of. I choose great fabrics, colours and products. I find things to make that have effective wins and I love products that have an ah ha moment.
My proudest moment is when someone has taken the confidence I’ve given them and walks into class either wearing or using something they’ve made on their own. Every person I get on the sewing wagon is my finest hour and as my sewing community grows I continue to look for fab makes that can kick start people to get their machine out and sew. After all, happiness is a full bobbin.
You can checkout my sewing classes via this link here