Facebook Pictures of Campers

Hello!

I haven’t posted anything here for about a month but my Facebook page has been busy!  I have posted many pictures of the activity and finished projects of the sewing campers.  Every single one of them have learned so much!  Most had never even threaded a needle let alone run a sewing machine.  And all are so proud of themselves when they see what they made out of a simple piece of fabric.  So, go on over and check out the photos!  And if you are still looking for a camp week, check out the Summer Camp tab above.  I try to keep it updated.  But as of now, the following weeks have openings:

July: 10-13- Night Owl – 1 spot left
July: 18-21- Full
July: 24-27- Full
July: 31-Aug 3: a.m. Crafts – FULL

Aug: 7-10 – Teens – Circle skirts: 3 spots left
Aug: 28-31 – Garden Party- skirt, back pack, (optional applique and matching doll outfit.) 3 spots left

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Updates- Camp and Other

Camp registrations have been trickling in.  The first camp in Great Mills is full!!  And I am very excited to meet new students! I also made a little change to the Camp information.  Originally I gave a theme for every camp week.  I decided to allow the first camper to register for that week to choose the theme.  There are a few to choose from and will be fun for both beginner and experienced sewers.

I also would like to invite you to visit my Facebook page also.  I post more pictures of my students working on their projects and any other related ongoing activities in the sewing studio.  I hope that one day I will see you or your child in these pictures! https://www.facebook.com/stmaryssewingschool/

 

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This Week- A Deal on the same Sewing Machine as Class

Hello All,

You know I am always on the hunt for sewing machine deals – not only to upgrade my own machines for the sewing school but for you all considering on either upgrading yourself or gifting one to our sewists!
I found the same machines that we use in our classes online for $50.  ( https://www.overstock.com/Crafts-Sewing/Sewing-Machines/19182/subcat.html) Bear in mind that any machine under $100 are considered “throw away” machines because they cost more to repair than they are worth.  But that being said, they are great to start off if you are still not sure if your new sewer will continue wanting to sew or you just don’t have the budget yet for a higher quality machine with will last longer.
And here is my note to you to also consider if your pocket allows.  I started with an old 1955 Singer 99k.  I love the whole vintage thing about it.  It also came with all these special presser feet for more elaborate “frills” you can create on a garment.  I got it for $30 on Ebay.  However since I was an inexperienced sewer without anyone to consult at the time, I didn’t know how to deal with hiccups, tension, etc.. which means that when I was sewing something, if it came out sloppy, I thought it was me.  And at one point I almost quit because I thought I just wasn’t “talented” to sew.  Then I tried a different machine.  A new, modern, high quality machine.  WOW! I didn’t suck after all. (excuse the word. I just couldn’t find a better one at this point)  My stitches were straighter, I didn’t have all those thread tension problems and it gave me a second wind.  Now not only do I love it, (hence the desire to share my enthusiasm with kids) but now that I am taking custom couture sewing classes I have discovered a hidden passion in drafting custom patterns!
My point is that if you can afford it and you think that your child may want to pursue this new craft, go for a better machine.  BUT do your homework.  Talk to the different sewing machine dealers in So. Md.
 Viking/Husqvarna & Pfaff Machines: Lexington Park
 Elna, Janome, Necchi : Calvert Quilt Shop, Prince Frederick
Brother Dealer machines: Michelle’s Quilt shop, Hughsville http://www.michellesquilts.com/
Michelle’s has great customer service, super nice-won’t push you to buy, and has affordable prices on quality Brother machines that you cannot find in the retail stores nor online. – I highly recommend a visit to her shop.  Other shops may pressure you into thinking you are losing a deal.  Walk away.  And really think about it.
I am always and still learning.
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New Sewing Projects Finished

Since it is easier and quicker to post pictures on Facebook, I would like to direct you there until I have the time to do it here.  A couple of my students finished there projects.  One did a peasant shirt with sleeve variation and another student finished her peasant dress in which she wanted to add an empire waist.  We briefly tried it out with a ribbon.  She like the look so we will complete the alteration in the next class.  I will take pictures and update.

And for those still on the fence about joining a class or camp, I invite you to come and see us in action.  Get a chance on one of my sewing machines and give it a whirl.  Hope to see you here.

https://www.facebook.com/stmaryssewingschool/

https://www.facebook.com/stmaryssewingschool/

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Contact Page-Technical Difficulties

I have been made aware today that I am not responding to the contacts page – where I am directing everyone to register.  Well, Thank You!! Because I had no idea!  No wonder I have not received any messages for a long time!! So, please be patient.  I am trying to get that fixed.  In the meantime you can email me with the same information: stmaryssewing@gmail.com

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TEENS: Discover a Hidden Talent

School is winding down, sports practice and games are almost over.  How about a break from the heat one week in the summer and have fun learning a very practical skill?

If someone would have exposed me to what I have only discovered in mid-life, I would have had a rewarding career where I had a natural ability to do but never knew.  Why? because we are NOT exposed to so many things in school.  Yes, we learn very important information and I can go on about the value of education.  I went to college, earned my B.A. in Social Sciences. But I left without knowing what I was innately good at, not necessarily what I was interested in.  We can be interested in many things but not be skilled, talented or even desire to work in certain professions or industries we like.  I love watching detective shows, but I don’t want to work as a detective.  I love spy movies.  Nope, do not want to work for the CIA. And I was never interested in fashion or fashion design. Yet I LOVE constructing, pattern-making (drafting with rulers and compasses) and sewing! Yeah, I know, its weird.  Or is it? Who knows? I could have been working behind the scenes with the artisans of Chanel, Versace, or Christian Dior. Again, it is not about the fashion.  I just enjoy the process of creating something new from a string or a bead.

But I digress.  The point is that if you are not exposed to everything, how do you know what you are good at doing?  Where do your hidden talents lie?

It is unfortunate these days that kids loose a lot of self-esteem if they are not good in a certain subject at school or academics in general.  Maybe the interest of learning has been zapped because they can’t see the application that some of what they are learning can be used in life outside of school.  So here is a challenge.  TRY IT.  Its only 3 hrs a day for 4 days.  I haven’t known anyone who doesn’t walk away feeling good about something they made by themselves.

I have added 2 themes for a summer workshop – Jeans: Re-fashion/re-purpose. And the other one I am really excited about is Workshop 2 – Intro to Couture Sewing! If you haven’t already gotten a hint of what couture sewing is, here is the definition from the dictionary: the design and manufacture of fashionable clothes to a client’s specific requirements and measurements. See also haute couture. The term is french and essentially means sewing or dressmaking.  However, now its about nice, fine, tailored clothing.  If you do a YouTube search for ” Inside Haute Couture” you will find a fascinating world of artisans behind the scenes.  

Sew… this is what we will be doing and I hope to see you in my class:

Teen Workshop – option 2 – Intro into Couture Sewing
In this workshop students will be learning all the same techniques as option 1 except that instead of using a set pattern they will be creating  their own pattern according to their personal measurements (which we will do in class) for a circle skirt and half circle skirt according to the techniques from top European Fashion designers.
The option 2 workshop is part of what I have been taught.  And it is a steal learning it from me.  My mentor, Ella Pritsker charges $595 for the same amount of time I will be spending with you teens!  And if my tidbits aren’t enough, about 2 hours north of St. Mary’s County is The Maryland Center of Fashion Design (link below) where you can attend more classes.  Ella is a high end fashion designer who makes evening gowns and wedding dresses for prominent people in Baltimore.  Here is her bio. – http://ellapritsker.com/about/

 

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New Theme Added to Summer Camp – JEANS!!

JEANS! Re-Fashion/Re-Purpose Old Jeans

Pocket Organizer
Don’t throw out those torn or worn out jeans. There is so much you can do with them! Below are a few examples to choose from and there is so much  more:
-Utility Aprons (not just for the kitchen)
– denim sport balls
– tote or purse
– fashion a skirt/shirt with multiple pieces or make into a pencil skirt
– pot holders and trivets
– bag tags and key chains
– hanging pocket organizer
– Jeans cushion
– tablet or phone holder
– Sandals and slippers
– the list goes on…

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Sewing Camp travels to Front Royal, VA

A good friend is hosting me and graciously offering her home for a sewing camp week in Front Royal, VA! This is exciting! Spreading the joy and practicality of this dying craft.

Mark your calendar: Jun 5-8, 2017
10a-1p: kids 6-12
2p-5p: Teens 13+

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Project Sewing Draw-string Bag Complete

Happy faces enjoying the fruits of their labor!  These kids just can’t get enough.  Most of the students have completed their bags which introduced basic sewing skills: following written instructions for constructing and sewing a simple pattern, learning fabric terms like right side “pretty side” and wrong side, selvages, straight of grain, straight stitching and zig-zag stitching.  They have been practicing how to re-thread the machines, wind bobbins when they run out of thread (they love this part) and even changing a dull or broken needle. Now they are allowed to pick any of the pattern projects in their book. One is starting on cutting and construction of a blouse and others on skirts.  One of my youngest students, a first grader, is already halfway finished with her skirt!  I am so proud of these kids.  I never thought how much they would love coming to sewing classes.  So, if you are out there wondering, come and check out a class.  All introductory classes are complimentary. Here is a picture of their first completed projects. (this is just one class)

Look what we did!

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Which Sewing Machine Should I Get?

Some of you have asked about sewing Machines and which would be a good buy now that their kids have thoroughly enjoyed (understatement) their sewing classes and want one now. Here are my thoughts.
1) depends on your budget and how long you want it to work.

2) ** DROP IN BOBBIN** – careful that the machine you see for that great price may have a Front loading bobbin case which is extremely frustrating for a beginner to deal with.

3) If you think your budding sewer will be really into making crafts or continue learning dressmaking skills, go for a machine that will carry on to intermediate sewers. THEY DON’T NEED BELLS AND WHISTLES for dressmaking, although they are nice but not necessary.

4)Mechanical vs. Computerized? – personal choice.

5) Here is my list for you: (not in any particular order)
a. Brother Project Runway CE7070PRW is a great value because it is priced under $150 and it has many, many features, accessories, and options. This is a perfect machine for beginners.
b. Brother CS6000i – When I replace my machines, I will either get this one or the project runway Brother
c. Janome Magnolia 7318
For more:
http://sewingmachinesview.com/best-computerized-sewing-mac…/
http://sewingmachinesview.com/10-best-sewing-machines-money/
http://sewingmachinesview.com/best-mechanical-sewing-machi…/

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