Dressmaking Classes

Dressmaking classes for the beginner and beyond. Technique workshops, classes and courses. We can add you to the waiting list, use the contact form below to let us know what class(es) you would like to join.

A right of passage on your dressmaking journey! – the humble pj’s.  Make them for yourself! Make them for your friends and family (great for gift giving).    With very little fitting, you’ll get to grips with the basics and master them in no time!

BEGINNERS DRESSMAKING : PJ’s ~ 6 hour class (full day). £85

Beginners to dressmaking  BUT you must be able to use a sewing machine, or have attended any of our previous classes. Please speak to us if you’re unsure. CLASS SIZE: maximum 3 people. TUTOR: Louise. DURATION: 6 hour session.

  • Learning sewing language – understanding the instructions.
  • Taking your measurements,  to decide which size you are, grading between sizes, if necessary.
  • Adjusting pattern length, if required.
  • Placing pattern in the most economical way on your fabric, to lessen wastage.
  • Cut out fabric, and finish off the seams to help prevent fraying.
  • Constructing your pj’s
  • Standing back and admiring each other’s fabulous creations!

What is included?

Paper pattern & instructions. If you are intending to make it for yourself, you have to check that the pattern fits you.

The paper pattern size range is from Waist 22″ / Hip 31″ to Waist 42″ /  Hip 51″.  We also have a pdf printed version, for up to size W 53″ H 61″.

A box of glass headed pins and bobbin.  Yours to keep.

Use of  sewing machines and tools.  If you do wish to take your own pins/pincushion/scissors etc please feel free to do so.

We’ve chosen a wardrobe staple, the simple skirt, to begin your dressmaking journey and it’s has pockets!

BEGINNERS DRESSMAKING : AVA SKIRT ~ 2 x 4 hours sessions (usually a Saturday & Sunday. £120.
  • Making the Ava skirt by Sew Over It, a simple shape with pockets!
  • Taking your measurements,  to decide which size you are, grading between sizes, if necessary.
  • Placing pattern in the most economical way on your fabric, to lessen wastage.
  • Cut out fabrics.
  • Learning sewing language – understanding the instructions.
  • Constructing your skirt.

What is included?

  • A copy of Sew Over It, Ava Skirt  If you already have a copy please let us know.
  • You have to let us know your waist and hip measurements, at the time of booking, so we  can allocate you the correct pattern (A or B) and inform you of the amount of fabric you require.     Pattern A:  from Waist 24″ / Hip 34″ to Waist 38″ /  Hip 48″ .        Pattern B: from Waist 38″ / Hip 48″ to Waist 50″ / Hip 60
  • A box of glass headed pins and bobbin.  Yours to keep.
  • Use of machines and tools.

DRESSMAKING ~ Become Pattern Confident.  We are thrilled to have Louise take this class, her years of experience and knowledge, as well as her passion and patient manner, will bring you more confidence in your sewing abilities. Reading your pattern instructions as you sew along is fundamental to your learning, to help you understand the terms and recognise the process for your future making.

BECOME PATTERN CONFIDENT : for learning basic skills : 5 weeks of 3 hours sessions. £150. (This class also runs as a shorter 3 week option too)

Is this class for you?

  • have you tried making garments from patterns unsuccessfully
  • unable to decipher what the pattern and instructions are asking you to do
  • unconfident in choosing a size and the fabric for patterns
  • would like to learn basic skills to achieve greater results
  • have sewn for years but first time (or getting back into since school!) trying your hand a dressmaking
  • need the dedicated ‘me-time’ to complete project(s) the 5 weeks of 3 hours

What you need to take:

  • The pattern you wish to make.  For learning you are advised to make a simple pattern, nothing over complicated or couture, so we can manage expectations, enabling you to learn the basics, gaining confidence and building the foundation of your dressmaking.
  • Required fab

A sewing pattern is only a guide, a blue print, and will not be a one size fits all.  It shouldn’t be disheartening that you have to make alterations, this is the beauty of making your own clothes and not buying ready to wear. 

FITTING MASTERCLASS : 2 sessions of 6 hours, £210.00

Your Tutor: Helen Boor, who is a designer and pattern cutter, will be holding your hand through the complete process of dressmaking.  Giving you the confidence to pick up a pattern, trace your size, sewing up a practice piece, fitting your pattern to your shape, learning alteration techniques and transfer the alterations back to your pattern.

Helen’s new class is over 2 sessions, a couple of weeks apart to give you time to do your homework.  It means that more time in class is used productively with your fitting issues and the garment sewing is mainly done in your own time at home,  in between sessions.  Please make sure you allow time throughout the 2 weeks to construct your practise garment Helen will give you pointers to construct in less time than if you were making a finished garment.

Scope of learning:

  • Accurately take your measurements
  • Personalising your pattern
  • Basic alterations you need to make before cutting out
  • Grading through sizes
  • Pattern markings / balance points
  • Tall and small alterations
  • Altering necklines
  • Bust adjustment
  • Raising or lowering darts
  • Shorten or lengthening dress / bodice
  • Broad / Narrow shoulder adjustments
  • Adaptations, of sleeve length / biceps
  • Removing excess fabric for a better fit
  • Transferring all your adjustments back to your pattern pieces
  • AND so much more! … as the course is for 3 people you will be hearing about each other’s adjustments, increasing your knowledge and confidence.


  • For the class, bring a selection of patterns with you that you’d like to make and we’ll go through them with you, NOT TROUSERS – we wouldn’t recommend trousers at this point, because of their complexity, this will be a class in future.  (Do not pre-cut the patterns!).
  • Why do I have to take a selection of patterns? To help you get the most out of the fitting class, we will discuss the possibilities of each pattern.  Choosing a shapeless pattern offers little learning.


  • Tracing paper
  • Practice fabric (curtain lining or calico)
  • Use of tools and equipment
  • Box of glass head pins (for you to keep)

Skill Level: Confident beginner, meaning you will have been expected to have sewn a couple of garments.  (If you have spent your time (and money) sewing your new garment(s) and are disappointed with the fit after construction, then this class is for you.)

In this technique class you will be sewing 4 samples of zip insertion.  Learning Louise’s techniques of preparation, and execution for success.

ZIP TECHNIQUE CLASS : 2 Hour session, £ 45

Everything is provided for you, including notes with photographs, you just need to turn up.  Throughout the session you are more than welcome to make your own notes too, writing on your sample pieces, on your instructions and taking photographs to help you.

  • Standard zip
  • Concealed zip
  • Lapped zip
  • Open ended zip

Sewing Level:

  • Comfortable using a sewing machine

We often rush through the hem, being the last step between you and your finished garment.  BUT this is where you can really UP your skill level and have the insides as beautiful as the outside.

PERFECTING YOUR HEM : Technique class, 2 hour session : £45

Louise will be guiding you through different ways to finish your woven fabric seams from the basic to the beautiful.

  • Single fold, with overcast/edge finishing
  • Faced hem
  • Bound hem
  • Machine blind hem

Sewing Level:

  • Comfortable using a sewing machine, including beginners who are looking to advance their skill set.