Sewing Tips + Tricks: Creating a pattern from your garments

Introducing our newest blog series, Sewing Tips + Tricks, where we will share with you various sewing secrets and techniques for the absolute beginner or the more experienced. Starting off the series is a method for creating a pattern to replicate your favorite garments!

Our sewing student, Akari, had a sari top that she adores and she wanted to try and copy the top in her sewing lessons. Jennifer started teaching her how to copy the sari top by using the draping method. The draping method is an excellent and friendly way to gather the intricate details of your garment and create a pattern. It is typically done using muslin. 

To begin, you drape muslin over the top while it is on a dress form. Then, you build in all the darts, seams, and design lines. You can use a pen or pencil, and some sewing pins here. This is where you want to be as precise and meticulous as possible in order to truly capture the original garment. Take your time and try to mark every detail of the garment. After, take the muslin off the dress form and turn your muslin copy into a pattern. And.. Voilà! You are on the way to successfully replicating the pattern of your favorite garment. 

The next step in replicating your garment will be cutting out the pattern in fresh muslin and sewing it up as a test garment. Afterwards, you will be creating your final garment. We will share more sewing tips + tricks on this process as the project progresses with our sewing student Akari. Stay tuned for more! And have a go at creating your own pattern in the meantime!

Sewing Lessons at JOA

At JOA we are passionate about sharing our love for sewing with the community. We believe there are so many wonderful benefits of sewing that can transfer to all areas of your life. Check out our previous blog aboutthe benefits of sewing here. The fun part about learning how to sew is that anyone can do it! As adults, we often lose the pleasure of learninga new skill or hobby. Sewing is the perfect solution to experience the feeling of learning something for the first time. It is so rewarding and satisfying!

One of the joys of teaching others how to sew is getting to see all of the beautiful things they create afterwards. Our past student, Meshay, created a whole collection of handsewn items as gifts for her family. Check them out below!

Words from Meshay about her experience with her sewing lessons:

My sewing classes with Jennifer were so much fun! I went into my first class not knowing much at all and in just a few weeks, I had completed the cutest twirling dress for my daughter. Jennifer was a fantastic teacher! She was encouraging and guided me through the entire process, answering any questions that I had. Since my classes, I’ve sewn many treasures for my family and friends. Hand made gifts are my favorite and I’m thrilled to be able to pour love into the gifts I give! Thank you, Jennifer, for being such an amazing instructor! “ – Meshay Christiansen , Sewing Student

Master Dressmaker, JenniferOberg, offers private sewing lessons at JOA for the beginner and intermediate level, ages 10-17 and 18+. If you are considering private sewing lessons, please get in touch with us. We would love to share our passion for sewing with you! Send us an email at love@jenniferoberg.com or call (808) 757-5915 to book your sewing lesson appointment! Visit our Shopify to purchase your private lessons. Mahalo!

10 Reasons Sewing Makes Your Life Better

There are so many great life skills to have or to learn. Learning to cook, to do your taxes, to ride a bike, to make your own bread, to iron, etc.. One valuable skill that often comes in handy is learning how to sew! A button falls off of your favorite shirt or your pants get caught on an edge and rip or maybe you just want to make your own clothing design from scratch. The possibilities are quite endless. Nonetheless, it is so practical and fulfilling to be able to sew.

Apart from being incredibly useful to be able to sew, it is also great for your health and wellbeing. Checkout the 10 reasons sewing can brighten up your life:

  1. Body, Mind, & Spirit Connection – Sewing is a fulfilling exercise of connectivity between your body, mind, and spirit. Satisfying creativity, using your hands, and staying focused on your sewing project. Plus, you feel great once you’ve completed your project, knowing it was created by your own two hands!
  2. Improves memory – By memorizing many different steps, patterns, and techniques you begin to improve your memory in a fun and engaging way.
  3. Presence + Focus – Sewing is very meditative and peaceful. It can allow you to truly be engaged in the present moment, simply focused on whatever you are sewing. This can be hard today in our busy, busy world.
  4. Creativity – Sewing allows you to find another medium of creativity and self-expression in the clothes or items you wish to sew. The styles, patterns, or techniques you use can bring out a whole new side to your creative expression. Perhaps you design a whole new wardrobe designed by you! 
  5. Environmentally-conscious – Being able to sew allows you to recycle clothes more easily and to keep clothes longer by fixing up any wears or tears. Much of the clothes available today are produced by fast fashion companies who produce clothing that is not made to last. 
  6. Ethical Thinking – Once you begin sewing your own clothes you start to become more aware of WHERE your clothes or other products come from. It truly helps you cultivate mindfulness about shopping in general, ensuring what you buy is ethically sourced.
  7. The Perfect Fit – When you can alter and hem your own clothes, you finally can begin to appreciate clothes being able to fit your body perfectly, because let’s face it, our bodies were never meant to only fit into 4 different sizes.
  8. Screentime Detox – It’s difficult to avoid our screens, especially now that so much of our lives have gone virtual. Sewing is the perfect way to take a break from your screen and reconnect with the present.
  9. Finger Dexterity – Develop improved finger dexterity and fine motor skills through the nuances of learning to sew. Sometimes we take this skill for granted but it is so important for musicians, dentists, surgeons, and in a number of other careers. Sewing is a great way to improve this skill.
  10. Patience – patience is becoming lost in our world centered around ‘instant gratification’. This is truly a skill to practice and exercise, and sewing requires patience and a willingness to learn–both wonderful skills to carry with you!

Just some of the ways sewing brightens up our life! We hope you can find the same joy in it as we do at JOA. We offer private sewing lessons at the Atelier in Makawao. We would love to share this wonderful life skill with you! Get in touch if you would like to schedule a lesson. Email Jennifer at love@jenniferoberg.com. Mahalo!