My first sewing teacher taught me that the inside of a garment should look as good as the outside. I was graded on it! Today I know that everything you do, or don't do, on the inside affects the way a garment looks on the outside. So I still carefully finish seams, trim, grade and clip threads. Neatness counts.

My first job in the sewing industry as a sample seamstress taught me the importance of accuracy. I had to sew accurately to test the integrity of a pattern draft or grade. Today I know that aiming for perfection may cause you to slow down, baste or rip out some stitches along the way. Just remember, it's the aiming and not the perfection that's most important.

Years of being a custom dressmaker and teaching fitting workshops with Pati Palmer taught me how much a few small changes to a pattern can affect the fit of a garment. Fit is one of the biggest frustrations for so many sewers. Today I know that searching for the perfectly fitting pattern isn't the answer. Knowing your body shape and learning how to alter any pattern to fit it is.

40 years of sewing classes and studying clothing, patterns and books taught me techniques. I have learned from many wonderful teachers over the years - each one with their own unique twists and variations of the same techniques. Today I know that having a wide repertoire of skills - knowing more than one way to do anything - construct a welt pocket, insert a lining or make a buttonhole is invaluable. You will have the ability to make the best choices for each fabric you choose; for each garment you make.

Years of training with couture expert Roberta Carr taught me how to sew in my head, to think through the process, to anticipate and solve problems and to visualize the finished garment. I learned that this process, as much as having the sewing skills, leads to couture quality garments. Today I know that couture sewing is truly an art and

"it's all in the details..."
Copyright 2017 Marla Kazell
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