Back to Sewing School!

It's Back to Sewing School time at Sew You Studio!

We're excited about our new schedule AND our new studio! We've moved next door into a larger studio space and we can't wait to have you join us in all the sewing, crafting, and party fun!

Our Fall 2014 schedule has been updated with sewing classes for both kids and adults. Most of our classes are offered as a series for the best skill-building and learning! 

Here's our Fall 2014 line-up for kids and adult classes:



Find a class you like and register directly on our siteWe look forward to sewing with you!


A Fab Pattern Sale and a Giveaway

There's a great pattern sale going on at The Southern! It's called The Sew Fab Pattern Sale: Spring 2014 and it's a great deal for a bundle of 19 different sewing patterns. There's a good mix of projects that will keep you busy sewing for yourself, your kids, or someone you love! Hurry, though! This sale ends on May 13th!

The other exciting part of this pattern bundle sale is the giveaway! There are 2 prize packages to be given away; each filled with great goodies! I have made a cute zip pouch and some pretty bias trim (3 yards of each!) that are included in one of the prize packages. 

Zip Pouch and Handmade Bias Tape by Claudia

For the chance to win 1 of 2 prize packages, go to the Sew Fab Pattern Sale post on The Southern and enter! You can enter the giveaway as many times as you want using the Rafflecopter widget and there is no purchase required to win! Best wishes and happy sewing!

Sew Giving April: Baby Bibs

The Sew Giving project for April was baby bibs for a local crisis pregnancy organization: The Gabriel ProjectThis center is committed to supporting pregnant mothers by offering emotional, spiritual, and material assistance. These bibs were lovingly made by my students and we hope they bring smiles to their recipients.


Sewing bibs was a fun project! The girls who participated were able to practice stitching skills along with construction skills. They worked hard and with each completed bib it was very apparent that their skills were developing and improving.

Making a bib at Sew Giving

Sew Giving is open to all Sew You Studio students, past and present! i hope you can join us in May--date and project to be announced soon. 

What's the Most Practical Thread Color When Sewing?

QUESTION: Do you have to match the color of the thread to the fabric?

ANSWER: No, not necessarily. (See below)

neutral thread color gray

In my opinion, colored thread is best used when you want to accent a seam, be artistic or camouflage the stitching. I don't think it's always necessary to match the thread to your fabric. In fact, it's usually more practical to have a good supply of neutral-colored threads on hand because they'll get you through most projects--off-white, black, tan, and gray. 

My favorite color of thread is gray; it's subtle and pretty all at the same time and seems to be a chameleon color as well. Don't get me wrong, I love color! But when it comes to sewing with colorful thread, I reserve it's use for topstitching or any visible stitching. I especially like colored thread if I want to add an accent to my work but most often I use neutral colors. 

So, if you're looking for practicality, go with gray!

You can now purchase classes directly on the Sew You Studio site!

I've been working on updating the Sew You Studio website. You'll find a few new changes, like the class options categorized into Classes for Kids and Classes for Adults. There's also a section for Special Events offered by Sew You Studio. Go check it out!

The most exciting change is that you can now securely purchase your class selection directly from the site! Just visit the class you're interested in and select "ADD TO CART"! I look forward to sewing with you!

Tutorial: How to Make Small Bean Bags

Bean bags have many uses. They can be used as weights, for playing games, as markers on a sports field, and even for therapeutic purposes*. Not all bean bags are filled with beans; there are many things that can be used as filling. Some examples include rice, feed corn, sand, dried lavender, beads. Let's learn how to make bean bags!


Sewing Bean Bags - tutorial

Finished size is about 3" x 3".

1. Gather your materials.



2. Cut the fabric to the desired finished size and add 1 inch to each side for a 1/2 inch seam allowance. Example: to get 3" x 3" finished bean bags, cut fabric 4" x 4". You will need 2 squares for each bean bag.


3. Place 2 squares of fabric right side to right side (RS:RS) and sew all the way around leaving a 1.5 inch section open. This opening will be used for turning the bean bag right-side-out and also for filling the bag.



4. Clip the corners to reduce bulk. Turn right-side-out.



5. Using the funnel, fill the bag with the filling. How much? That depends on how you choose to close the bean bag. If you want to sew the hole closed with the sewing machine, then leave enough space to flatten the edge and get it under the presser foot. If you choose to close by hand sewing, you can fill the bean bag completely leaving no flat sections and sew it closed using the slip stitch.



6. When sewing by machine, use a straight stitch to sew the whole edge that has the opening--make sure to backstitch at the beginning and end. Optional: After sewing the straight stitch, sew a zigzag stitch along the edge to reinforce it and give it some character.


The bean bag is finished!

*These bean bags were the project in March for our donation program Sew Giving. They will be used by the therapists at the Mount Saint Vincent Home.


Here are some ways for using bean bags in the sewing room:

  • as weights to hold down patterns or to hold open a book
  • as markers on top of a pile of fabric or paper patterns to help organize a project
  • as air fresheners when filled with dried lavender flowers (also know as sachets)
  • as neck warmers to sooth a stiff neck after working on a sewing project (if filled with rice, warm the bean bags in the microwave)

Sew Giving March: Bean Bags

The Sew Giving project for March was bean bags for the Mount Saint Vincent Home. This is the same organization that we donated to in February. I found out that they could use bean bags for their therapy services so we made that our project for the month of March! I am glad that we could donate a practical gift. 

The bean bags that we made were not filled with beans but with rice. I'll be posting about the simple process for making bean bags in my next blog post.

Bean Bags

Sew Giving February: Valentine's Day Cards

The Sew Giving project for February was sewing Valentine's Day cards for a local organization. The Valentine's will be given to the children who are part of the residential program at Mount Saint Vincent Home. This organization offers a variety of programs to help children who have been abused, neglected, or traumatized. Children who are part of the residential program, attend school at Mount Saint Vincent Home and receive therapy treatments. They are also offered a variety of fun and enriching opportunities after school and on the weekends. We are happy to get to share our sewn Valentine's Day cards with them and hope that this small gesture of friendship and love is received with smiles. 


Sew Giving January: Winter Hats

The Sew Giving project for December (2013) and January (2014) was to make polar fleece hats to donate to the lunch program at St. Catherine of Siena Parish in Denver. St. Catherine's has a small food bank and offers lunch sacks to those in need of a meal. The weather in Colorado is always changing and while most days are sunny with beautiful blue skies, there are many frigid days during the winter. Those that ask for food are also in need of warm coats, hats, and gloves. We hope that the hats that were so lovingly made by Sew You Studio will give warmth of body and heart to each person that receives a hat.


The fabric that we used for the hats was generously donated by Jesi of Hip Violet. Thank you, Jesi! These fleece hats were a great project for our young sewers and beginners too! They are simple and quick to make and don't require much fabric. Speaking of fabric, we will gladly accept your fabric and thread donations for future Sew Giving projects! (Cotton, flannel, and fleece are ideal fabrics.) Contact Claudia if you have a donation or questions about Sew Giving.

So thankful to share of our time, our talent, and our gifts!

The Teacher

claudia miller of sew you studio

Hi, I'm Claudia, the sewing instructor at Sew You Studio. I've been teaching children and adults to sew since 2007. I was once an elementary school teacher but became a stay-at-home mom when our first daughter was born. After a few years of being home and sewing for my children, I decided I'd like to teach again but this time I would teach sewing.

It's been a fun journey teaching others how to use a sewing machine and how to make clothes, quilts, items for home, and gifts. There are many people who have never learned to sew and are eager to figure it out for practical or creative reasons; they want to learn so that they can hem their pants, so they can express their sense of fashion, or they just want to develop a new hobby. Whatever the reason, they quickly learn that making and creating your own things is very rewarding.

LEARN: In the upcoming year (2014), my instruction will be focused on a sewing program for kids ages 8 and older--a type of "sewing school".  The goal is to give my students a good foundation in sewing by developing skills and independence over a semester-long program. The students will progress through different levels while making a variety of skill-appropriate projects. 

I will be offering a few project-based classes for those kids who can't make the "sewing school" series or who are looking for something fun to do on the days there is no school. (Calendar to be updated soon.)

For moms interested in sewing for their kiddos, join me on Monday mornings at Amelia's Mammas to sew cute things for the ones you love--childcare is provided for a small fee. Private lessons for adults are also an option as my schedule allows. 

If you want to learn to sew but don't live in the Denver area, please check out my online class on the Atly learning site: Sewing 101. It's a great class for beginners that will familiarize you with the sewing machine and teach you the basics you will need to start sewing with confidence.

Happy Sewing!