Ask the Sewcialists: Do you take classes to learn new skills?

Graphic saying: Do you take classes to learn new skills?

There are so many ways to learn to sew: from a mentor, trial-and-error, YouTube, blogs, patterns, and classes online or in person! Today we’d love to hear from you: do you take classes to learn new skills? If so, why? And if not, tell us why too!

For myself, I learned the basics from my mom, and levelled up my skills through practice and reading blogs. I’ve taken a few Craftsy (now Bluprint) classes online, but I tend to get bored quickly. The only in-person class I’ve taken was a weekend intensive in bra-making, and it was well worth the hefty price tag for me because I found it such an intimidating type of sewing and fitting.

Nowadays, I’d rather spend money on materials or even kits than classes. It’s just how my brain works! Classes can be quite expensive, and I find myself thinking, “I could just figure that out myself, right?” I’m lucky to live in an area where I could take classes at a few locations within an hour drive, but even that distance becomes a barrier. That said, I’ve taught intro to sewing knits a bunch of times, and I think the students found it useful!

Personally, I figure classes are great if:

  • you are intimidated by a new skill and that is stopping you trying it on your own
  • you enjoy having someone on hand to explain how and why to do something
  • you appreciate the social aspect or it helps you set aside time to craft
  • the craft requires specialty equipment, like shoemaking, weaving, or 3D printing
  • you have a budget which allows you to maximise your learning time and chances of success

Classes might be harder for you if:

  • you’re on a budget: classes and workshops can be expensive individually, or add up over time (I hope you are enjoy our “Fitting with Gabby” series, which is basically a free class!)
  • they’re not accessible: either they aren’t offered in your area or getting to/from/around class is a barrier
  • online video classes don’t suit your learning style
  • you get more joy from digging in and trying things out experimentally

Do you take classes to level up your skills? Tell us why or why not in the comments below! And while you are at it, perhaps you could recommend your favourite classes face-to-face and online!

Gillian love sewing knits in bright colours and crazy prints, and blogs at https://craftingarainbow.com/. She lives in Canada and co-founded the Sewcialists in 2013.


Dear Reader: Our goal is to build community and make everyone feel welcome. We support crafting as an inclusive and welcoming space for people of all ages, abilities, ethnicities, genders, orientations and sizes. Regarding sewing challenge themes, we ask that you take each challenge as you see it fitting in your life, and express your involvement how you like, at the given time. Our challenges are for the pure enjoyment of participation and the love of community. Extended Mission Page Here.