10 October 2014

Behind the Scenes... Workshops in the Studio



This time last week I was busy arranging the studio for the sewing workshops we've started hosted. I've been designing and teaching courses for ten years now, but last weekend were particularly thrilling because they're the first I've ever run in my own space. Once I'd nailed the lesson plans, I got a bit (over?)excited making the other preparations...

sewing classes London
sewing classes London

Fiskars sent over an assortment of dressmaking scissorsrotary cutters and - best of all - these dreamy A1 cutting mats. Why so excited? Because they're not that standard shade of dark green, no. They're banana yellow! One of my two favourite colours! Sigh... they make me so happy...

sewing classes London
sewing classes London

Something else that makes me happy is having a MASSIVE THREAD STAND in the studio. The lovely people at Mettler brought this round this week, so in future workshop participants can choose a shade of thread for their project right here. Duncan from Mettler was quite excited that the studio is north-facing - apparently it means the light is perfect for colour matching. Not something I'd really thought about before!

sewing workshops London

And of course you can't have a sewing workshop without a goodie bag, and you can't have a goodie bag without sweeties. Stitchers need sugar sustenance! Mollie Makes sent over some mags for the bags too, so the participants would have plenty of creative inspiration (to go with their sugar rush) to take away with them.

sewing workshops London

We had a full house on Saturday, with eight lovely ladies for Learn to Sew 1: Make Friends with a Sewing Machine. Some of them had never used a sewing machine before in their life, others hadn't sewn in a while and were looking for a refresher. They all got stuck right in and we had such a giggle that some of them have now become friends after the class.

sewing workshops London
sewing workshops London

Once they'd got to grips with the (not so) mysterious art of threading a sewing machine, we moved on to sew a Brigitte head scarf and play around with decorative stitches. At one point the room went particularly high pitched when someone discovered the kitty embroidery stitch on the Janome DKS100. (Awwwww!!!) Cue eight kitty themed head scarves!

sewing classes London
sewing classes London

On the Sunday, four stitchers returned for Learn to Sew 2: Make Pyjamas. Even though I wasn't sewing myself, I found it the perfect way to spend a Sunday - cutting, stitching, chatting and drinking tea. Look at those grins - these ladies did themselves proud! We toasted their achievements at the end of each day with a glass of prosecco. You've gotta celebrate learning, haven't you?!


sewing workshops london

It was such a wonderful weekend and I'm looking forward to our next workshops already! Most of the workshops for the rest of the year are sold out, but we do have places still available on Learn to Sew 1: Make Friends with a Sewing Machine on Wednesday 12 November (6.30 - 9.30pm - for novice stitchers or those looking for a sewing machine refresher) and Learn to Sew 3: Make a Skirt on Saturday 25 October (10am - 5pm - for beginners who can use a sewing machine and want help starting dressmaking). And if you're desperate to do one of our sold out classes, just email hello at tillyandthebuttons.com and we'll put you on the waiting list and let you know as soon as we have new dates.

Hope to see you there!

33 comments:

  1. Good to see your Ikea cart is also a mess! Haha.

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  2. The workshops look very fun and relaxed! Look at all those beautiful colours of thread all lined up.... so exciting!

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  3. Congrats on the first classes! The yellow cutting mat.... swoooon. The usual green is so ugly!

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  4. Why, oh why can't I live in London and join you on Sunday afternoons?
    I'm swimming in a pool of old ladys, dusty fabric shops and snobbish sewing machines sellers right now in France...
    Sewing in the UK seems to be much more fun :)

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  5. Oh my gosh, these look like so much fun! The studio looks gorgeous.

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  6. Congratulations on the first workshops! The studio looks great too, so light and bright. I've just ordered a new sewing machine (can't wait for it to be delivered!) so will definitely be emailing you to go on the waiting list for future classes, especially the copying your own clothes one. Good luck with the next batch of workshops :)

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  7. hi tilly,
    where did you get that beautiful magnetic pincushion?
    and congratulations on yor first workshops & and on the studio, it looks so nice!
    unfortunately i'm in germany.

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    Replies
    1. The magnetic pin holders are from Amazon!

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  8. I love your space. I dream to create something like that here.

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  9. Your studio is looking absolutely stunningly beautiful! Congratulations on your first workshop at your new studio! I'm not so beginner but it still makes me want to take your pyjamas making workshop. It just looks like so much fun!

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  10. I love your studio. Looks everyone had fun!

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  11. That looks like so much fun. What a beautiful studio!

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  12. What a wonderful space you have Tilly. I'm afraid if it was mine I would never want to leave leave as its so beautiful. It's ok to sleep in your sewing room right?! I hope to attend a class of yours one day :)

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    Replies
    1. Soooo tempted to get a sofa bed for the studio ;)

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  13. I love your sewing workshop! What a great space for people to start their love affair with sewing, little do they know how addicted they will become! Well done Tilly xxx

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  14. Looks like you had great fun! It's so wonderful that sewing has now become something that is seen as fun and cool, and not something 'only grandmas do', or anti-feminist - which I always thought was daft anyway! I got your book a while ago but for various reasons, haven't got around to making anything yet (partly being getting on and finally fixing some clothes I haven't been able to wear for one reason or another, another useful sewing skill! but I have my eye firmly on the pyjama bottoms for lounging around in. You'll be pleased to know I have them planned in yellow (actually a brushed cotton sheet that I haven't used for yonks!) and some yellow cotton print for a bit of interest at the hem :) Looking forward to making them :)

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    Replies
    1. I totally agree - for me feminism is about celebrating, not disparaging, skills considered to be feminine.

      And yay to yellow PJs!

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  15. The participants in the workshops seem to have a great time! Nice!

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  16. Beautiful! Love the pictures and the happy faces! The studio is growing. Exciting :)

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  17. I am so excited for you! The studio looks fabulous. I would love to come to a workshop but will just have to tuck myself away with your book and create in my own craft room. I was introduced to those banana sweets last week on a holiday to Australia - yum! You have to have some goodies to keep energy up when sewing !!! You are such an inspiration xxxx

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  18. Tilly, this is so, so great! I wish I could be there. :) Thanks for sharing.

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  19. It's beautiful to see your success growing Tilly! Beautiful studio and great teacher, you rock girl!! Xoxo

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    1. Thank you so much, that's very kind :)

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  20. You've come a long way! It all looks amazing. So nice to watch your business grow over the years- well done!

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  21. Wow what a gorgeously creative space and everything is so new and shiny. Love the thread stand, in love with those colours. Thanks for being such an inspiration and for making me realise that success in doing something you love and believe in is achievable with a little bit of hard work and perseverance!!

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  22. SO SO JEALOUS! I wish I could come to your workshops, they look so fun and amazing and happy and oh god I wish I could go!

    http://whydidimakethat.blogspot.co.uk/
    https://www.etsy.com/shop/WhyDidIMakeThat

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  23. Such a great space, I love all the little pops of color. And that kitty stitch is super cute--meow!!

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  24. I would love to do your back to back learn to sew 1 and 2 next year. Are there any hotels &b&bs nearby? I've tried to check on google but there did not seem to be any.

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  25. What a lovely studio and those yellow mats are delightful! I also love the colour on your sewing machines! Glad your first workshops went well, and that you are all booked up!

    You were my favourite on the Sewing bee and I have enjoyed seeing what you have achieved well done! Hopefully might come along to a workshop soon.

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  26. Tilly! You are such an inspiration. I live half way across the world but if I ever visit, I would just have to come meet you in your beautiful studio.

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  27. I have to say that I find your blog so inspiring! To see how you're following your dreams gives me so much hope that one day I might get there. Thank you for sharing!

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  28. Hello Tilly

    I am so inspired by everything you do and adore your studio you are amazing and each day I read your blog it makes me feel a home. Congrats my lovie all the best!

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