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If you read this blog, you probably noticed that it’s about ‘sewing, learning & teaching’
Sewing is very obvious and today I wanted to talk a bit about the learning part.
I’m very curious by nature. I love learning new things and when I take interest in a certain thing I want to learn everything I can about that thing.

However, between work, house, family, friends… learning easily disappears into the background. Yes, you buy Craftsy classes that you forget about, read 500 blogposts on how to do a certain technique. Read the first 2 chapters in a new book on tailoring… and then it falls by the wayside…

So since September I decided to approach my learning in a more conscious way.
First, I’ve signed up for a two year lingerie making program. Every Monday evening I go to school and learn about making lingerie. I’ll post an update about this soon, but we’ll be finishing the module on undies in two weeks and I want to review that as a whole 🙂

I also decided to block out time in my planning to actually learn things.

I’m a visual learner: I learn by observing & by reading. So, I decided to go to my Craftsy * account, check all my classes and start watching them. The first one I completed was “Sewing Lingerie: essential techniques” by Alison Smith. Alison Smith is a great teacher and I love watching these videos. There are some things I already knew (such as sewing bottom to top on a bias cut seam to prevent stretching) but there are also a lot of very intesting little tips & techniques that make all sewing – not just lingerie – a lot easier!

Currently I’m enrolled in ‘The Iconic Tweed Jacket‘ by Lorna Knight to refreshen my memory on this subject. I’ve made similar jackets before, but for this project I’m working on, I wanted to do it the ‘right’ way. It’s great to have video to refer to! I’ll post a full review of that class when I’m done watching!

The third one I’m rewatching simultaneously is “Essential Guide to Tailoring: structure & shape” which is also by Alison Smith. I’m working on a tailored jacket for a client and I love to have this class with me as a guide. I have done a couple of tailored jackets before and learned the basics in school, but if you don’t have to get out your tailoring skills often, it’s nice to have a reference in place!

Do you also have this thing with classes: if you like one teacher, you start watching every single class they filmed? The way someone teaches is so important for a good learning experience! Something I try to keep in mind when I’m teaching sewing and art myself!
The most important thing about these classes I’m currently (re)watching is that I get to implement them immediately. There were times when I watched classes, (like other people watch series, I guess) and didn’t get to implement them. Practicing what you learn is so important to make it stick!

craftsy overview

 

Another way I love learning is by reading books. Books are a source of inspiration, but also my favorite source for a quick refreshing of my memory.
One of my favorite books is ‘Pattern Making for a Perfect fit‘ by Stefani Lincecum. This is actually more of a “how to on how to copy all of your favorite garments and accessories”, but I love it.
I often get clients who are in love with one of their garments, but the garment is falling apart and they can’t find the exact same thing. That’s where I come in: I take their garment and copy it, without taking it apart.
The methods in the book describe how to do just that in a very detailed way. If you have a favorite garment that’s no longer good to wear, this book might help you out!

Below is a picture of me copy-ing a pair of pants for a client who ordered a modern + funky pantsuit!

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After coming across a lot of praise for ‘Fit For Real People’ by Pati Palmer, I decided to order that book too and delve into it. I’d love to learn fitting beyond the basic things I’ve learned so far!

I feel that making time to learn more about my craft & implementing the new knowledge in my projects makes me a better sewer and a better business owner.

So tell me: how do you learn? Books, video’s, blogs? Do you have a particular source you recommend? Let me know in the comments!