Friday, August 5, 2016

Craftsy Class Review: Sew Better, Sew Faster: Advanced Industry Techniques

I've been interested in Janet Pray's "Sew Better, Sew Faster" classes on Craftsy for a while, as I am always looking for ways to make my sewing easier, more professional, and faster.  So I picked up this "Advanced Industry Techniques" class in a recent sale.  I chose this one, rather than her more basic class hoping I would have more to learn from an advanced class.

Well I have to say this is probably to best Craftsy class I've taken.  I've taken some really useful ones in the past on specific subjects (alterations, serging) but this one covered so much useful information on basic sewing techniques.

The teacher, Janet Pray, has a long history of working in the garment industry and teaching garment industry sewing.  I never realized how different techniques really were from the garment industry to home sewing, assuming it was mostly machinery and repetition that made industry sewers so fast.  But Janet explains that home sewing techniques have mostly been passed from generation to generation and originally came from hand-sewing techniques, while garment industry techniques are about what actually works best and is fastest.

Topics covered in the class are cutting, marking, sewing without pins, interfacing and pressing, zippers, waistbands, buttonholes, and seam finishes.  You can see these are all basic and frequent sewing tasks, and I think I learned at least one really useful thing on each topic, and usually many things.

Janet also covers topics such as tools and ergonomics.  I've already gone out and bought myself a board to make a custom extension for my sewing machine bed since it's vintage and doesn't sit down into my table.  I found myself taking notes throughout the class (which luckily Craftsy makes easy to do within their interface.)  That's something I've honestly never done for any other Craftsy course.  I find myself really eager to try out all the techniques from the class. I put off this review until I had a chance to try out what I learned from the class in practice.  I was able to do that when I made myself some board shorts recently.  I'll admit the idea of sewing without pins was daunting.  I found myself still using one or two pins in places to line things up.  But overall, I found her methods really worked!  I was able to stitch without pins, or using only very few.  I followed some of her advice on topstitching to achieve a more professional looking result.  I was able to cut multiple layers of stretch fabric at one time without it shifting AND without pins.

I think it's safe to say that this class has had the biggest effect on my sewing habits of any I've taken, and I highly recommend it.

Oh and just for the hell of it, here are the board shorts I made.  I used this pattern, which includes built-in swim bottoms.

1 comment:

  1. On your recommendation, I bought the class, and I'm finding lots of interesting tips...thanks for sharing it!