Yesterday I took a class at my local Joann’s called Learn to Sew (Find a class near you here). The class was $35 and had a list of supplies required to bring to the class. I definitely suggest bringing your own sewing machine so you can learn the machine that you’ll use at home, instead of learning how to use a machine they have.
I went on a sunny Sunday afternoon for the class that was scheduled for 2:00-4: 30 pm and arrived at my local JoAnn’s about 1:45 so I could pick up the supplies I hadn’t bought yet from the list. Luckily, the instructor was there and informed me that I don’t actually need all the items on the list for this class but I should have them if I want to continue sewing.
For one of the items (tailor’s chalk), she suggested a different option than the one on the list because she felt it was more universal than the white tailor’s chalk. My instructor is a quilter, and quilters follow different sewing rules than you would follow for crafts or clothing so many recommendations were with that bias. If at all possible, I recommend checking with your instructor to see what the real requirements for the class are regarding fabric and notions so you don’t spend money you don’t need to.
I ended up being the only person who showed up for the class which was disappointing for the teacher, but great for me since I got a personal teacher to show me everything I wanted to know with no distractions. We started with a tour of the store which sounds like an advertisement for JoAnn’s, but it’s not officially part of the class and she really just wanted me to know where to find all the supplies I would need for sewing. She showed me what tools JoAnn’s had for me to find what I wanted and how to pick out a pattern. The next sewing class requires you to pick out a pattern and if she hadn’t shown me all the information that is on a pattern, I definitely would have bought something wrong.
She went over all the parts of my machine (this one) and started with how to thread the machine. I had watched about a zillion YouTube videos on this and hadn’t mastered it so I was really excited to get good at this very basic sewing ability. Having someone show you in person how to thread your machine is so much more helpful than watching a video or reading the diagram in the user manual.
We did a few practice stitches where we increased stitch width and length on the machine to see what kind of difference it would make and she showed me how to make a ruffle with a zig-zag stitch with length and width at the highest setting. This was mostly to make sure I got the hang of using the machine before I did a simple pillow but I will do more practice stitches next time I sew just to keep practicing and try out all the stitches on my machine.
Now it was time for the main event: making the pillow. Using all the skills I had learned in the past 2 hours I was able to complete the pillow all on my own and walk out of the store with my achievement. I went home proud of my pillow and now I want to sew things for our whole house. Realistically, I’ll start with hemming all my clothes, but then I will venture into home décor.