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Beginner Sewing Tips

Many of you had asked for some tutorials on building basic sewing skills and techniques. There are so many great tutorials out there already that I wanted to share a roundup of those links, rather than try to re-do what has already been done so well. I’m going to concentrate on tutorials involving vintage lifestyle/vintage sewing only. Those are coming shortly! πŸ™‚


One of my favorite learning platforms is Craftsy. I’ve purchased and worked throughΒ manyΒ Craftsy video classes for myself, as well as a number of free classes offered, and I highly recommend them when looking to invest in your sewing education.

Two of those FREE classes that are perfect for the beginner sewer are Mastering Zipper Techniques and Bag Making Basics. The bag making class is awesome if you know your way around a sewing machine, but haven’t really “made” anything yet. A tote bag is the sewing project that most beginner classes will teach, and it’s an excellent place to start, especially if you want to ease into accessory/garment sewing. For the record, I still refer to that zipper class all the time!


If you love the free video classes, check out the longer full length classes and see if any of them are for you. Craftsy offers classes on everything from pant fitting techniques, to drafting your own A-line skirt,Β bust adjustments, and more! I recently finished the A-line skirt class and I loved it!

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Another amaazzzing resource is the Tutorials, Tips, & Tricks archive on the Colette Patterns blog. You’ll find every thing from bias tape tutorials, tips for french seams (all kinds of seams actually), piping, cording, alternative types of pockets, setting in a sleeve, you name it! Use the search bar at the top of the page if you’re not willing to scroll through all the the previous posts. But! If you do have time to scroll through all the archives, I bet you’ll find yourself reading about something you didn’t know you needed to know! Awesome stuff there.

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Tasia of Sewaholic patterns also has a fantastic libraryΒ of sewing terms and how she’s used them in practice. She pretty much covers a little bit of everything you could possibly want to know!

Both Sewaholic and Colette have frequent sew-alongs where they walk you through every step of the sewing process for a particular pattern. Sew-alongs are great for those who want to get into garment sewing but need a bit of visual hand holding throughout the process, and that’s okay! Sew-alongs also get you involved in the sewing community and help you make new friends online. I can’t wait to bring Sew For Victory back in the spring! (That’s a 1940’s themed sew along for those of you who missed it last time.)


I hope these references will help you on your way to becoming a better seamstress.
Stay tuned for more vintage/40’s specific sewing tutorials soon πŸ™‚



  • Thanks Rochele, I completely forgot to try Colette

  • I could never find all of these resources without spending days/weeks looking for them if then. Thank you for your time, effort and inspiration.

  • Thank you so much for this post! I’m going straight on to craftsy to learn more about zips. Can’t wait to take part in the Sew For Victory sew along next year

  • Stine

    Thank you for these links; this is awesome!. Now to make a cup of tea and get reading!

  • Thank you for sharing these resources! Any specific sewing machines you favor that seem to work well for vintage patterns?

    • Rochelle

      My sewing machine right now is about as modern as they come. I use a lot of modern tools that make vintage sewing easier. Working with old patterns can be difficult enough, so anything else I can use in the process to make my life easier, I do it! I have a late 40’s Domestic Rotary Electric sewing machine in a cabinet but it hasn’t been restored yet so I’m not sure how she works. I’ve heard that any sewing machine that’s black and was made before WWII is worth restoring and sewing on πŸ™‚

  • Seriously fantastic! Thank you very much for sharing these great starting points for brand new and beginning sewers.

    β™₯ Jessica

  • misscrayolacreepy

    I LOVE the Craftsy classes so much! And even though I have a few projects under my belt I can’t stop making those tote bags.

  • ina

    Thank You for summarizing And looking forward to more