Tag Archives: craftsy

Learning by video, musings

So I am curious to know what you think about learning with video?  It seems to be a growth area with both Tilly and the Buttons and Sew Over It embracing this more interactive approach for learning in their business offer.   While video is still a bit of a novelty in sewing blogs, who can bypass Karen’s Christmas message , and recently I have enjoyed Lisa’s Vlog (Behind the Seams) tremendously- you just know she is having so much fun behind that camera!  Rachel, our resident sewing muse, supports us bloggers with ‘posing tips‘ right here.

YouTube Preview Image

There is also the recent foray into video that Colette Patterns have introduced with Sarai’s video guides – here’s a link to the film  helping with buying knits  .  Don’t you love hearing the real voice of the blogger, and being surprised and knowing at the same time? Karen I think speaks as she writes- optimal word usage, with precision, style and always there’s a twinkling of amusement.  It should not have surprised me that Sarai’s got the most dulcet honeyed tones but being British I would have read the words from the blog in my own English voice , so delight in hearing her authentic Portland accent. And Rachel, the exotic enthusiastic warm hearted Brazilian, her vlogs bring bursts of sunshine.

So video is definitely a curiosity as a blogging medium, especially for me when it adds another dimension to what you think you know about the blogger.  But for learning, with Tilly’s online sewing class and now Lisa’s (Sew Over It) does this herald a swell in online learning ?

Craftsy of course have hours of friendly footage with teachers covering so many different crafts- some free, but most is paid.  If you do invest make sure to wait for the crazy deals in the sales that come around fairly frequently.  yes,  if you do invest, the Craftsy platform app is now even better with the ability to download for offline viewing which I really appreciate, frequently finding myself with dodgy wifi .  And the ability for replaying a 30 second loop when trying to understand and master a new step?  Much used in my current knitting project – the Artemesia sweater (more on that another time).

So both Tilly and Sew Over It already offer face to face sewing classes.  Video classes should bridge the gap between   written instructions, or step by step photos and being able to attend a face to face class,    Learn to Sew Jersey tops  by Tilly and the Buttons gives you a live view of what your sewing should be looking like whilst Tilly guides you through every step of the process.  And all the time getting a Tilly fix.  ( I remember hearing Tilly on an American podcast last year and the host being fixated on Tilly’s very English accent.  Plenty of that going if it facilitates your sewing experience- it’s the equivalent to my Portland comment above!!)   I have had a dip into this class, but am not giving a review, but can tell you that The lessons I’ve looked at so far are filmed around the construction process and are very cleanly captured- different angles provide the view that you need all the while Tilly’s demonstrating and providing guidance.  It is aimed to be used with the Agnes top, and you get a digital copy of the sewing pattern included.  But the principles for using a regular machine to sew knit tops can be applied to any standard knit top pattern you already have.  A proper confidence boost I reckon, launching you into making more with knits.  A good pattern / concept to start with?

But what provoked me to muse over video learning was the recent launch of the Grace dress online sewing class from Sew Over It.

Whilst I haven’t seen any of the lessons, the content looks more than just a video showing you how to sew the basic dress- as well as the expected lessons, steps include Lisa’s top tips for sewing an invisible zip and even when and how to do an FBA or an SBA.   Relatively complex procedures, but the things that will make the difference to get a more customised fit and polished finish.  By distance learning!  And judging by the video tutorials on the Vlog, (eg adding a waistband to the Ultimate Trousers) you will be in a pair of very calm, knowledgeable and safe hands.

So I am not reviewing these classes by any means, I’m just curious.    Youtube has so much free content- but I suppose it’s a bit of a lottery finding exactly what you need to know, and then how well the youtuber is explaining and filming it.  No guarantee on a. finding exactly what you need and b. quality.   Making an online video class must take such a lot of time, effort and investment – I hope that these online classes do well, I know how useful i am finding following a video knitting class, as I am such a basic knitter and this covers a whole load of new knitting techniques & I make soooo many mistakes.  I just wish someone else would do the ripping back for me!  What do you  think? Are you a video learner?  Is youtube a frequent port of call & what have your experiences been like?

and no, I am not writing this as any kind of market research.  And no again, I am not planning to stick myself in front of a camera and either make some parody of myself with an overdone Somerset accent or go through that trauma of hearing what you really sound like to other people. Too freaky for me!  I’m just musing …. What do you think?

Laura Lounge trousers with faux piping

Has anyone else bought the Craftsy class, Creative Serging with Angela Wolf??

Well, it has to be one of the Craftsy classes that I keep returning to, possibly because it is stack full of interesting techniques to try.  I have watched the sections on hemming with a coverstitch machine a fair few times, & went back again to the sections on “faux piping”.  I’m also intrigued by inserting a zip using an overlocker – you can bet that will be another technique I shall return to.  But back to piping.  Angela shows how your serger’s rolled hem function can be used to create a piping effect (actually bear in mind she shows you one effect in many different permutations!  Loads of design ideas too).

laura lounge trousers (2)One sunday, in a fit of creativity, I decided to let loose some fancy decoration using this approach for some lounge trousers.  The Maria Denmark Laura Lounge trousers.

I’ve made them before & they are a home-slobbing staple.  But with style, clearly.  And as they are destined for the eyes of family & the cat, it didn’t matter if I went a bit “arts & craft” on them I thought.

laura lounge trousers (3)

In the craftsy class, Angela also has a Babylock with a wave stitch that can be used to create a two-tone wave effect stitch.  This can be fancy-panced piping too!  I’d never used my Babylock’s wave stitch before, so I practised a bit with some red & green thread.  Then & worked out that the simplest way to create a piped side seam effect was to use this wave stitch to actually sew the side seam, with fabric wrong sides together.  Just like that.  No other seams, just attaching the two pieces together at the same time as creating faux piping.  Surely the quickest way to pipe a seam ever?

faux piping wave stitchI didn’t stop there.  I also wave stitched around a nifty pocket, because sometimes even when you’re lounging it’s useful to have a pocket, correct? (as long as there’s nothing in there that pokes into you as you lounge).

piped pocketI attached the pocket using the single chain stitch on my coverstitch.  I also used this stitch for the hems, but think I prefer the two thread coverstitch as a hem.  You gotta experiment though, right?  Otherwise you’d never know …

coverstitch hem

The fabric is some ponte knit that I bought from my local fabric shop, what used to be called Husqvarna studio but is now Mark Pickles Sewing Studio (I think).  It’s perfect for autumnal lounge trousers.

laura lounge trousers

And the trousers in full action.  What an intriguing shot of me reading …do you ever wonder what people are really reading on their Kindle?  They might say that it’s Wuthering Heights but for all you know it’s 50 shades of grey.  In this case the illuminating & entertaining Morrissey autobiography.

Anyway, I digress.  What I want to end on is this note.  What techniques might you fancy trying that you could incorporate into a nice simple piece of clothing?