Tea dress class at Ray Stitch

February 16th 2013katie

Sewing class at Ray Stitch

I was VERY excited to get an email from darling Islington sew shop Ray Stitch, asking if I’d like to try out one of their new sewing classes. Ray Stitch is the loveliest little shop: a cave of beautiful fabrics, notions and supplies alongside a little cafe with excellent coffee and cakes. They now offer evening classes which cover the whole gamut of sewing, from beginners’ machine skills to pattern cutting, quilting and soft furnishings.

Sewing class at Ray Stitch

I took the Tea Dress class as I already know my way around a machine but wanted to learn how to cut and follow a pattern having never done it before. The dress also has some little details like bias binding, an elastic-channel waist and peter pan collar which I thought would be great techniques to learn and apply to other projects.

Sewing class at Ray Stitch

The course was spread over two Friday evenings, in a small class of 5-6. Last Friday we did a lot of prep to get started: measuring each other to ensure we picked the right size, learning about ease, and figuring the best way to cut our pieces to avoid too much fabric wastage. I love the Liberty Lawn fabric I picked (on sale at sewbox.co.uk), and I even have a bit left over for another small project.

Sewing class at Ray Stitch

We tackled some of the trickier parts of the construction first, like sewing the bias binding to the keyhole neckline, under the watch of instructor Gen. I loved how the class was informal without any demos, yet Gen was on hand to answer any questions and keep an eye on everything. There was a bit of homework between the two sessions on the easier sewing tasks like the sash and shoulder seams. In the second session we finished the details: sewing the puffed sleeves on and creating the elasticated waist, then finally sewed the whole dress together.

To be honest, one of the most exciting parts was being let loose in Ray Stitch after hours, breathing in all the heavenly sewing goodness..

Sewing class at Ray Stitch
Sewing class at Ray Stitch
Sewing class at Ray Stitch
Sewing class at Ray Stitch
Sewing class at Ray Stitch
Sewing class at Ray Stitch

I spent this morning doing a bit of handsewing final touches – and here’s my finished dress!

Miss Mozelle dress
Miss Mozelle dress
Miss Mozelle dress
Miss Mozelle dress
Miss Mozelle dress
Miss Mozelle dress

OK, it’s not 100 per cent finished as I still need a button for the keyhole neckline, but I am impatient. My very first from-pattern dress is a billion miles from perfect, but still so pretty, totally wearable and fits well – and it’s really comfy. Plus I’ve leant so many new skills that I can put to use on my next sewing project. I’ve already eyeing up what I want to make next… a Peony dress perhaps.

Sewing class at Ray Stitch

Thanks so much to Ray Stitch for the fantastic class! You can find out about all their upcoming events here.

Comments (14)

  • travelknitter

    February 16th 2013 at 2:37 pm

    Oh my word, that dress is gorgeous! I love Ray Stitch, and really need to do one of their classes. I have a sewing machine just gathering dust, and it needs to be put to use. Thanks for the post!

  • Cicely W. Stone

    February 16th 2013 at 10:47 pm

    It’s gorgeous! Well done. And the pattern is sooo pretty.

  • Diane

    February 17th 2013 at 4:29 am

    The dress looks lovely Katie – yay for sewing clothes!

  • Joanna

    February 17th 2013 at 9:23 am

    Oh wow! This is stunning! I’m very impressed and loving the pattern and all those lovely shots from Ray Stitch! Happy sewing! Jo :-) x

  • Charlotte

    February 17th 2013 at 10:18 am

    That looks just lovely! Ray Stitch is just the cutest – I’ll have to look into their classes x

  • carolyn

    February 17th 2013 at 8:37 pm

    The dress is so pretty and I love the fabric you chose. I’m dying to learn how to cut and follow a pattern… it must be so satisfying wearing something you made yourself and I am finding it hard to find clothes on the high street i actually like these days… Hopefully I can find a course like this one to sign myself up on soon.

  • Cate Holst

    February 18th 2013 at 12:22 am

    Wow, I would love to visit that lovely shop! Cute little dress too

  • Vanessa

    February 18th 2013 at 1:35 pm

    Perfect timing– I was just thinking last night “Where on earth can I take a sewing class in London?”. This looks lovely. Might do the quilting one myself :) Can you buy fabrics in their shop?

    1. Katie

      February 18th 2013 at 4:16 pm

      Yes, they have loads of gorgeous fabrics – and you get 10 or 15% off when you take a class!

  • Michelle

    February 18th 2013 at 3:55 pm

    A great dress to get you into the swing of spring. Such a gorgeous little shop too.

  • Jess

    February 19th 2013 at 11:08 am

    I can’t believe you handmade that dress – it’s brill!

  • Japanese Girls advertise on their thighs and Ryan Gosling tea towelLaura La Rue

    February 25th 2013 at 9:05 pm

    […] at the Tate Modern – Isabelle OC * Get ready to be jealous – Miggy likes the internet * Learn how to make a tea dress whilst drinking tea – What Katie Does * Genius idea to take photos next to a magazine kiosk – Jou Jou […]

  • Bonkers About Buttons

    February 26th 2013 at 7:54 pm

    oooh… let me at those buttons!

  • How did you start sewing? | What Katie Sews

    August 8th 2015 at 12:15 pm

    […] sewing shop Ray Stitch, asking if I’d like to try one of their sewing classes to review on my other blog. I took them up on it – it was a two-part class to make the Miz Mozelle dress – and […]

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