Claire's Threads

News and New Workshops

  • Anniversary Open Day

    This Friday (15th July) I will be celebrating one year since opening The Midhurst Sewing Room.  Time has flown by and it has been lovely to see so many people coming along to workshops and so many beautiful clothes being made.


    I will be holding an Open Day on Friday between 1pm and 6pm and it would be lovely if you could come along, there will be lots of tea and cake and you will be able to find out about NEW workshops.


    I will also be launching the Dressmakers Portfolio, a 6 month foundation for those wishing to focus on making a handmade wardrobe.

    Bloomsbury Square Fabrics who are next to the sewing room will also be open on the day with lots of beautiful dressmaking fabrics for you to browse.

    Hope to see you on Friday :)

  • Exciting New Workshops & Open Day

    Thank you if you came along to the Cocktails & Couture talk a couple of weeks ago, It was lovely to see so many of you keen to learn about Couture Sewing. Several people have mentioned they were sorry to have missed it - I would be very happy to do it again, I love talking about Couture, so if you did miss the talk and would like to hear about my trip and learn a bit about Couture sewing (and have a cocktail or two) please do let me know.  There are several dates on the website for one day workshops Introduction to Couture Sewing and a 4 day workshop in October to make a Couture Jacket.


    I have also added lots of NEW workshops to the website - right up to the end of the year - click here to have a look.

    The lovely Sue Cotten has been working on some new bag workshops and there are two dates for the Orla Kiely Bag.  On this workshop you can chose to make a tote bag, town bag or big bag.  All the materials are included in the cost of the workshop and everything will be cut out so you can just come along and sew.


    In July there are still spaces on a few workshops, come along and make a T Shirt Dress, a Linen Dress or a Tokyo Jacket or recreate your favorite garment on Copy It, Make It.


    Work Experience
    This Autumn I will be teaching at 4 shows and I am looking for some help putting kits together and getting organised.  This will be an unpaid roll, 1-2 days a week through the Summer.  As a thank you there would be an opportunity to attend a couple of workshops where space is available.  Lunch and lots of tea and biscuits would also be provided as well as tickets to the shows.  If you or someone you know would be interested please send me an email with your details and availability. Applicants will need to be over 18 and have there own transport.

    Finally - it has been nearly a year since I started The Midhust Sewing Room - time has flown by!!  To celebrate I will be having an Open Day on Friday 14th July from 1pm - 6pm.  Come along for tea and cake and find out about new workshops.  I will also be launching The Dressmakers Portfolio - a six month foundation for students wishing to build a portfolio of techniques and a handmade wardrobe.

    One last thing - if you follow me on Facebook and you have enjoyed a workshop with me it would be great if you could leave a review - just click on the link here

    Thank you so much :)

    Enjoy the sunshine and sewing

  • Cocktails & Couture

    I have just returned from a fantastic week of Couture Sewing in Palm Springs with Claire Shaeffer.  I have come back inspired with lots of ideas for Couture Sewing Projects and Workshops.

    If you would like to hear more about my Californian Adventure, as well as plans for future workshops, I will be giving a talk, Cocktails & Couture, on Tuesday 30th May.  For more details and to book a place click on one of the pictures below


    I have already added two dates for Introduction to Couture Sewing - click herefor more details.

    Three more workshops that have been added are are The Linen DressThe Margo Playsuit and The Raw Edge Jacket (only 2 places left) - click on the picture for more details


    For May there is just one space left on the Half Term Sewing School, In June there are a few spaces left on Monday Evening ClassSummer TrousersDuster Coat Shirt Dress - for details of these and other workshops click on pictures below


    On the 3rd of June I will be heading to Brighton as I have a stand at Sewmance Festival, this is an Independent Community Sewing Festival with lots of stands, demonstrations and talks.  Bloomsbury Square Fabrics will also be there - for more details click below.

    Just a reminder that the SPECIAL OFFER on Janome Sewing Machines ends on 4th June - if you would like any more information please let me know

    I am now busy writing Autumn workshops and will hopefully have it all together by the talk on 30th May, lots of exciting plans

  • May In Midhurst

    I have just returned from teaching at The Knitting & Stitching Show in Edinburgh, which was great fun, I taught lots of workshops and met so many lovely people.  Now I am back I thought I should update you with all the news and what is coming up.


    Before I went up to Scotland there were lots of workshops at The Midhurst Sewing Room including two weeks of Sewing Schools where students made many beautiful garments, from dresses to trousers, tops to jackets.  There was also a workshop making a Leather Jacket.  The pattern was The Raw Edge Jacket from The Maker's Atelier book The Essential Collection.  Students chose leather from a wide range of colours from GH Leathers and made wonderful jackets as you can see here


    The next Raw Edge Jacket workshop, in May,is now fully booked so if you would like to make this jacket in Leather or Boiled Wool let me know and I will put in another workshop date

    On Thursday  I will be heading off to Palm Springs to attend a sewing workshop with Claire Schaeffer. The workshop is called Chanel and That Jacket and focuses on Chanel, her life and contributions to fashion: the House of Chanel and the Chanel suit. I am really excited and look forward to learning lots of new techniques and bringing back ideas for future workshops

    While I am away the lovely Sue Cotten will be running some workshops.  The first is Creative Textile Techniques where you can learn to manipulate fabric, fabric origami. applique and perfect piping, after making samples you can turn your pieces into a bag or cushion cover.


    Sue will also be running a Stash Busting Day, use up some of your fabric stash and make a fabric tub, metal frame bag and fabric covered note book with hand stitched spine


    On 13th May Jenni will be teaching how to make Beautiful Fabric Flowers - these could be used in a corsage, bouquet, to decorate a hat or make a fascinator - click on the pictures below for more information.


    The SPECIAL OFFER on Janome Sewing Machines will continue until the end of May - if you are thinking of upgrading your machine now is a really good time - the offer includes £70 off of the Sewing Machine and includes an accessories kit worth £119. I will also give you an hour tuition on how to set up and use your new machine.

    You may remember that earlier this year Frances Tobin from The Maker's Atelier gave an inspiring talk here in Midhurst, you can read all about it in the May edition of Etc Magazine

    Other Workshops in May are The Linen Dress on 16th & 17th May, Favorite Machine Feet on 20th May and Fitting & Finishing on 24th May - for more details on these workshops click on the pictures below


    There are also some new workshop dates on the website to see all workshops coming up click here

    I am off to pack for my trip - you can follow me on Facebook and Instagram while I am away, click on the links at the bottom of this newsletter

    More News when I return, until then Happy Sewing

  • Sewing Machine News

    I am excited to say that I am now able to supply Janome Sewing Machines.  If you are thinking of buying a machine or upgrading now is a really good time as there is a very special offer for Spring.


    As well as a £70 saving you will also receive an Accessories kit worth £119.


    I will also offer 1 hour tuition at The Midhurst Sewing Room to get you started with your new machine.

    I have put two of the available machines on the website - the DXL603 which is the machine I have at The Midhurst Sewing Room and the QXL605 which is the upgraded version - exactly the same but with an added thread cutter.

    I am able to supply any of the Sewing Machines & Overlockers from the Janome Range so if you would like to find out what else is available or if you would like a price for a particular model please let me know.

    Also, a quick update since last weeks newsletter - I have put in a new date for The Maker's Atelier Raw Edge Jacket - Saturday 27th May.  Click on one of the pictures below for more details.


    More News Soon, Happy Sewing

  • Spring at The Sewing Room

    Last weekend I had a lovely time teaching with Jennie Rayment & Wendy Gardiner, at the Creative Sewing Weekend at Dunford House, which is just outside Midhurst.  I had 14 students all learning Copy It, Make It - by the end of the weekend they had a pattern and a toille, some had even started on their finished garment.  It was so lovely to spend the weekend with lots of ladies (and one gentleman) who are all passionate about making - to find out about future sewing retreats click on the picture below.  If you would like to try Copy It, Make It there is a class in July.


    I have been making samples for workshops coming up and am really happy with my leather jacket, it is made with a lovely soft leather and is so nice to wear.  The Raw Edge Jacket workshop, which uses the pattern from The Maker's Atelier book, is now fully booked, if you would like me to put in another date please email me.


    There are still a few spaces on this months workshops.  This week you can learn to do Origami with fabric and create a cushion with Sue, on Overlocker 2 take your overlocker knowledge to the next level practicing different decorative finishes and making a pretty box bag with a zip.  There are also a couple of spaces left on the Tuesday Evening Class starting on the 18th April and the three day Sewing School starting on the 19th.  One place left on the Tuesday Afternoon School starting on the 18th April.


    The Vintage Sewing School in June sold out really quickly so I have put in another date in July.  Choose to make one of 3 dresses or how about the new pattern from Til The Sun Goes Down - the Beach Pyjamas.


    I have added a few other new workshops dates - to see everything that is coming up click here

    More News Soon, Happy Sewing

  • Sewing Update

    I am back from teaching at Olympia and enjoying running lots of lovely workshops in Midhurst.

    A bit of a catch up since I last wrote - we had a lovely Open Day when Frances Tobin of The Maker's Atelier gave an inspiring talk about how she started her brand.   We then had a chance to look at (and try on) lots of samples from The Maker's Atelier book, The Essential Collection - here are a few pictures from the day, click on the picture to find out about The Maker's Atelier workshops that I will be running.


    The Knitting & Stitching Show was great fun, I ran lots of workshops and met lots of lovely people.  It was really nice to see so many familiar faces and thank you to everyone who came along to be an Angel, your help was greatly appreciated and I hope you enjoyed the show as much as I did.  I didn't have time to do any shopping but did come away with lots of inspiration for new workshops - look out for these fab patterns


    Congratulations to Sue Cotten who many of you know from Midhurst - Sue had to stand in for a tutor who couldn't make it to Olympia and had to learn a whole new skill to teach a full workshop.  As well as this Sue did a demonstration to 30 people in the Creative Theatre for the first time!

    I am now getting ready to teach at a lovely sewing retreat in a couple of weeks then I will be off to The Knitting and Stitching Show in Edinburgh - you can find out about where I will be teaching on the Out and About page, including details of The Great British Sewing Bee Live - click below for more details.


    There are lots of workshops coming up at The Midhurst Sewing Room this month, this week you can make a Pencil Skirt & Top from The Maker's Atelier Book, on Saturday Sue will be running her popular workshop on how to make Fabric Covered Coiled Pots. You can also add to your Sample Portfolio with Tailoring Techniques which includes bound buttonholes and pattern matching.


    Next week is the Seam Detail Dress and there is a day for Beginners where you can gain confidence with your sewing machine and make a Simple Kimono Jacket.  Jenni will be teaching a workshop on how to make Beautiful Fabric Flowers on the 29th March, learn to work with different fabrics, bonding and manipulating to create corsages, broaches or head pieces.


    More News Soon, Happy Sewing

  • Sewing For Spring

    I hope you have had a lovely weekend.  We had and inspiring talk by Frances Tobin of The Maker's Atelier at the Sewing Room last weekend - It was a great afternoon with lots of sewing chat and we got to try on samples of garments from The Essential Collection - the fabulous new book by Frances

    There have been some busy workshops at The Sewing Room recently with lovely Origami & Wrap dresses and Tokyo Jackets being made as well as shirts,dresses & coats made by students on Evening Classes.  By popular demand I will be running the Tokyo Jacket again on 15th July, to see details click on the image 

    I will be heading up to London next week to teach at The Knitting & Stitching Show, do come and say hello if you are visiting the show - I will be in the Dressmaking Studio most of the time :)

    There are still workshops at the Sewing Room next week - with a few places on A Taste of Colour which will be run by Sam, learn how to combine colours as well as how to wear this years Pantone Colour of the Year - Greenery.  Sam will also be teaching a short course on how to Crochet the week after.  If you would like to learn how to make Beautiful Fabric Flowers have a look at this new workshop by Jenni - For details of these three exciting workshop click on the images below


    There are lots of NEW workshops on the website - dresses, trousers, a duster coat and even swimwear as well as new dates for Evening Classes and Summer Sewing Schools - to see all that is coming up click on the images below


    More News Soon, Happy Sewing

  • Book Signing & Open Day

    Just a quick reminder that next Saturday (18th February) Frances Tobin creator of The Maker's Atelier will be giving a talk about her inspirational brand and her new book The Essential Collection.


    I was lucky enough to go to the launch of this beautiful book last week, and I have to admit to making up a couple of the garments already.  If you would like to hear how Frances started her brand as well as having a chance see samples of the garments from the book then come along next week. Signed copies of the book will also be available.  Tickets are limited and are available HERE

    After the talk, from 3pm - 5.30pm, it will be Open House so if you can't make it before do come and join us for tea and cake and see what else will be coming up.  Lots of NEW WORKSHOPS including some from The Maker's Atelier book.

    Online fabric store - Bloomsbury Square Fabrics - who are in the same building, will also be open with lots of lovely dress fabrics to browse

    Lastly, thank you to all of those who applied to be Angels at The Knitting and Stitching Show - I will look forward to seeing you there

  • News & How to be a Sewing Angel

    February has started off as busy as ever :) as well as running workshops at the Midhurst Sewing Room I am getting ready to teach at The Knitting & Stitching Show at Olympia at the beginning of March.  If you are thinking of coming along to the show why not be a class Angel.

    These are volunteers who get a VIP pass in return for helping out in the classes.  In return for helping set up classes for 15-20 mins each time, for half a day, you will get the rest of the day to do what you like at the show. The VIP pass entitles you to quicker access, a dedicated cloakroom and lounge with easy access to coffee/sandwich station plus a little VIP gift and free catalogue.  If you would like to be an Angel let me know asap and I will let the organiser know.

    This week I have been making samples for the Vintage Sewing Weekend in June.  The patterns are The Lane Tea Dress and Ritz Pleat Dress by Til the Sun Goes down.  Both dresses have lovely bodices and bias cut skirts - click on  the images for details about the weekend.


    There are a few places left on workshops next week.  If you have ever wondered what all those different sewing machine feet are for then book onto Friday's workshop for lots of tips on getting the most from your machine and its accessories.  You will get to practice with about 20 different feet all together and take home lots of samples.

    If you you have been practicing with you overlocker and would like to learn what else you can use it for then Overlocker Part 2 would be perfect. On the workshop you will learn decorative stitches including using wool, fishing line and wire as well as inserting a zip and making this lovely box bag

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