“No Fears, No Failures” Beginners’ Sewing

This is an adult class for complete beginners aged 16+. Alternatively, if you already have a little experience with a sewing machine and are available during the week, you might enjoy my new 12-hour (4 x morning) “Kick-start Dressmaking” course. More experienced sewers may be interested in my “Sew Professional!” workshops.

New Miltown Malbay venue for 2019. Dates and details coming soon.

6 x Saturdays 
10am – 4pm 
Small groups (max. 4 people)

“… I learned more about sewing in two days than I did the whole year I spent in college. Thank you so much, it has given me the confidence to sew again. “  (BK, Ennis)

Butterick B5926 - new for 2018, an easy-to-sew jacket, made in a moderate stretch fabric.
Click image for full pattern details

To book, contact me direct using the form or call me on 087 669 3331. You need only pay €50 deposit to secure your preferred dates. The balance can be paid in instalments, as and when convenient. Further dates may be added, subject to demand.

This course is aimed at complete beginners who want to learn to make their own clothes. The focus of the course will be confident use of a sewing machine and dressmaking using a commercial pattern. You will first practice using the machine by making a useful tote bag from pre-prepared fabric sections, then progress to making your own garment from a choice of carefully-selected quick and easy commercial patterns, using your own choice of fabric.

Essential sewing skills

The course will cover

•    Threading a sewing machine, bobbin-winding, correct tension, stitch selection, basic maintenance
•    Body measurements, basic pattern alteration
•    Pattern layout and notation
•    Essential sewing techniques and garment construction
•    Finishing and fastenings (as required)


Sewing machines are available in-house. However, you are welcome (encouraged, even) to bring your own, if you have one.

B6186 dress pattern
Click image to see full pattern details

For the first 2 classes, you don’t need to bring anything with you at all. For the dressmaking project (3rd session), you will need:

  • Dressmakers’ shears (for cutting out)
  • Sewing or embroidery scissors (small sharp scissors for snipping threads and detailed work, buttonholes, etc.)
  • Pins and (recommended) pin cushion
  • Tape measure (60″, non-stretch, printed both sides)
  • Seam ripper (sometimes called a ‘quick-unpick’)
  • Needles
  • Tailors’ chalk

If you have all of these things at home, all well and good. Otherwise, everything you could possibly need is available on this site. Buy now, and pick up in class.

Butterick dress pattern B4443
Click image to see full pattern details

The fabric and other materials required for the tote bag are included in the course fee. This is a ‘no fears’ project, the principal aim of which is to produce an attractive sewing or craft bag under the pretext of learning to use a sewing machine.  In order to progress as quickly and as confidently as possible, the pattern pieces will have been pre-prepared and every step will be thoroughly demonstrated.

The course fee includes the pattern for your first dressmaking project.  You will need to buy your own fabric, along with any linings. However, interlinings, zips, and other ‘notions’ (haberdashery items) as listed on the pattern envelope are available from this store.

Butterick shirt pattern B5538
Click image to see full pattern details


Registered participants also benefit from a 15% discount on sewing supplies from www.sew-irish.ie, and continued support for your own sewing projects. Graduates from this course are able to book a day’s sewing during future beginners’ courses, where there are less than three people booked for the day. While this won’t be a tutored class, as such, I will be available to help you with any aspects of your pattern that you are having difficulty with. Or

For all enquiries,  contact me direct using the form or call 087 669 3331. Individual class sizes are limited to 4 people and fill quickly. Book early to accommodate any existing diary commitments. You need only pay €50 deposit to secure your preferred dates.