Tuesday, 18 June 2013

More Knits - Sewing Class Review

I loved Sarah Veblen's Understanding Knit Fabrics class on PatternReview.com so much I immediately enrolled in her follow-on course More Knits.
I couldn't wait for the kit to arrive in the post. The kit contains swatches of 28 different kinds of knits. Better than a box of chocolates!

This course uses the same format as the first one, but uses different fabrics and covers different sewing techniques.
The fabrics in this kit include natural fibres like silk, bamboo, linen, organic cotton and wool. There are also some performance fabrics, as well as several ornamented fabrics (sequins, sparkles etc) and mesh. There are some "eco-friendly" fabrics including Tencel. I thought Tencel was something jeans were made out of in the 1980s! If I see a Tencel knit in the right colours - I'll be snapping some up!

The lessons go through each fabric with in-depth notes on the manufacturing processes, laundering, needle choice and garment possibilities. Having the swatch to hold and feel while you read about it really helps you to understand the fabric and imagine what you could do with it.
Once all the swatches have been covered, the lessons move on to making a small-scale tank top using fold-over elastic. This is another product I hadn't tried (and still haven't as you can see - but I will!) and seeing Sarah demonstrate how to sew the tank top straps gives me the confidence to give it a go sometime soon. I'll also have the video to refer back to. The videos are to the point and show techniques like sewing over sequins and in fabrics like mesh which have "holes".

Sarah is a very good teacher who encourages her students to experiment with fabrics and design. My knit sewing has most definitely improved since taking these courses, as has my confidence to add my own touches to garments and make major design changes to commercial patterns.

Now, to find some of that gorgeous silk jersey.....

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