Thanks to the internet, there are now huge numbers of tutorials available at a click for people wanting to learn to sew, master new techniques or advance their skills. But sometimes it’s overwhelming, and can be even more so if you’re curvy or plus size and need more specific guidance – with the exception of the Curvy Sewing Collective, relevant and high quality information can be hard to find.
That’s why I think there will always be a place for plus size sewing classes, whether online or in person. Sometimes a few hours of tuition can help more than years of tutorials that don’t quite meet your needs. Plus, if you are able to attend one in person it can be really wonderful to meet women with similar sewing and fitting experience to swap tips and war stories!
Today I’m doing a round-up of the plus size and curvy sewing classes and workshops available – and if you know of any more, do leave a comment and share.
Plus Size Sewing Classes: In Person
Currently, there aren’t many plus size sewing in-person classes out there, but that is slowly changing!
There are two upcoming weekend Appleton Wrap Dress workshops for beginners or sewists new to working with knits – and I’m teaching! (Jenny Rushmore of Cashmerette Patterns). We’ll be getting into fitting for curves, how to grade between sizes, and how to sew a non-gaping neckband. The classes are suitable for anyone a sewing size 12 (store size 8) up to 28.
The first workshop is at WORKROOM SOCIAL in Brooklyn, NYC on May 14th & 15th (click here for more info), and the second is at the brand new Stitch Sew Shop in Alexandria, VA (just outside D.C.) on June 4th & 5th (click here for more info).
Brooks Ann Camper Couture
Brooks Ann Camper offers sewing classes in Hillsborough, NC, and while they’re not specifically plus size they are focused on drafting and sewing for your specific body type. She also has small enrollment interactive on-line classes available on her website.
In addition, there are sewing classes, events and conferences that don’t currently focus on plus size sewing, but could be of interest, particularly if there’s a lot of opportunity for one-on-one guidance or the teacher has experience sewing for plus sizes.
In the U.S., these include Camp Workroom Social in upstate NY, Susan Khalje classes in Baltimore (focused on couture sewing), A Gathering of Stitches in Portland, ME, Palmer Pletsch workshops in locations across the US, and Sewing Retreats with Sandra Betzina in San Francisco. For U.K. classes, check out this great directory. (Do you know about classes in other countries? Mention them in the comments!). There are also often classes at local fashion colleges – just bear in mind that these almost always focus on sewing for very small sample sizes, and to date I’ve never heard of any that cater to, or really even understand, plus size fashion.
If you wish more of these events would offer plus size-specific classes, you should let them know. I know from experience that there is skepticism about how much people are looking for these types of classes, and it’s only if people ask that the demand becomes clear!
Plus Size Sewing Classes: Online
Craftsy currently has two online sewing classes aimed at plus size sewists, and we’ve already reviewed them below so you can learn more before you buy. Craftsy classes often go on sale so it’s worth joining their mailing list so you hear about the latest deals.
- CSC Review: Plus Size Pattern Fitting & Design with Barbara Deckert
- CSC Review: Plus Size Pant Fitting with Kathleen Cheetham
In addition, these other classes that aren’t plus size specific but could be relevant:
- CSC Review: Easy Fitting the Palmer/Pletsch Way
- CSC Review: Sewing Bras: Designer Techniques
- CSC Review: Pant Fitting Techniques
- Adjust the Bust with Kathleen Cheetham
- Fast Track Fitting with Joi Mahon
- Pattern Grading for Sewers with Kathleen Cheetham
Burda has one plus size specific course, taught by CSC editor Mary Danielson Perry: Pattern Grading for Plus Sizes. It’s a great option if you want to sew patterns that don’t come in your size range, such as vintage patterns.
Pattern Review doesn’t have any specific plus size sewing classes at this time, but they do have one class on bust adjustments that could be interesting to you if this is something you have to do a lot!
Have you taken any of these classes? Or do you know of more? We want to make this post a resource for all plus size sewists, so let us know!