Dressmaking Skills

Ref: C3528367

Develop your sewing skills to create garments which fit while understanding how to alter a commercial pattern to fit you. A range of patterns will be available to suit your skill level while you gain confidence. Previous students of Suzanne will be able to apply their learning to carefully choose and provide their own patterns based on their known sizing if they wish. Those prefering to pursue craft items using remanant fabrics are also encouraged and supported.

Course aim

To encourage and extend further skills and confidence in the use of a sewing machine to create items of clothing or craft.

Who is the course for?

Intermediates and beginners are welcome to create garments which fit or craft products.

What topics will this course cover

How to use a commercial pattern and why they don't fit most people! Measuring for fit and checking the pattern, simple pattern alterations to create a better fit. Sewing demonstrations and guidance eg to fit an invisible zip. Please note this is not a pattern cutting course but adaptation of a commercial pattern is included.

What will it be like?

WEA classes are friendly and supportive. You will be encouraged to work together with your fellow students and tutor. You will be asked to share your ideas and views in the class and work with the group to give and accept feedback in a supportive environment. The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you to be actively involved in your learning. You may be asked to undertake work to support your course outside of your class.

By the end of the course I should be able to:

Understand how to use a paper pattern Take measurements and check the pattern sizing Allow for necessary pattern alteration Cut and Sew the item Create a quality end product

How will I know I'm making progress?

On- going guidance and demonstration. Questions and answers throughout. Support of others within the group where appropriate. Group and one-to-one support.

What else do I need to know, do or bring?

Basic sewing equipment to include; small and large scissors, pins, needles, thread, tailors chalk, tape measure, sewing machine with optional feet. Patterns and sample fabric will be provided.

Reading and information sources

No. A basic level of sewing is required as is the ability to thread a machine.

What could the course lead to?

Other WEA crafts courses and higher level learning eg at Plymouth College of Art.

Download full course outline

Dressmaking Skills Course Outline

Is this course right for me? Request more information

This course has been cancelled.


You can if you meet all of the following requirements:

  • are paying the standard fee or are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • are paying with a credit/debit card or are not paying a fee because of a qualifying benefit
  • have a valid email address
  • have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2016
  • have read and accept the standard terms and conditions
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