Swimwear Basics with The Makehouse

Swimwear Basics with The Makehouse


Join Guest teacher Jenny Ambrose of the Makehouse to make your first swimsuit in a small group with demonstrations and guidance. Learn how to better handle stretch fabrics, work with elastic and create beautiful edges using a regular sewing machine as well as a coverstitch machine. 

Friday August 10th, Book your half hour session with Jenny to go over your individual fit preferences and style, between 5-8PM (via email with Nicole)

Saturday & Sunday 11am-2pm, working on your suits. The studio will remain open until 4pm on Saturday to give you extra time for homework, though Jenny will not be in attendance after 2:30pm.


You can do some research to find some patterns you like, and we like the following patterns by indie designers:


If you already have a pattern in mind, please email the style to jenny@themakehouse.ca for approval. Please note that this is a beginner swimsuit workshop, so we won't have time to cover underwires. 

Group Workshop (2 sessions)

  • Learn the basic properties of nylon and spandex fabrics

  • Learn about the different types of elastic 

  • How to construct seams

  • How to line your swimsuit

  • Introduction to the coverstitch machine & twin needle

  • What stitches to use when using a regular sewing machine only

  • How to apply elastics

  • Hemming techniques for swimwear

  • This workshop is designed for intermediate to advanced sewers. There are 6.5 hours in total of class time (including your 1-1) plus homework between the group sessions. The group size is a maximum of 6 students so you will receive plenty of one to one help

  • Our instructor Jenny will be in touch prior to the workshop to ask for your measurements and advise on how much fabric to buy before the first class. Select colours of swimsuit fabric can be purchased from The Makehouse at The Spool the Friday evening during one-on-one time.

Pre-requisite - Foundations, or equivalent, PLUS some experience sewing with knits- T-shirt Class, Leggings class, or schedule a private lesson to get some stretch basics before trying this intermediate class. Less confident sewists should do a one-piece, more experienced sewists may try a two piece, but should be aware there will not be time to get into complex forms or underwire.

Material requirements:You will need to choose your swimwear fabrics. Material is provided for the practice version. Blackbird Fabrics is a Vancouver based online retailer with a good selection. Jenny will be providing a selection of notions to use as well.

Equipment requirements: Please note that we provide a sewing machine for you to use in the studio, but you are more than welcome to bring your machine from home. If you’d like to bring your home machine, please remember to bring the manual (and foot pedal/power cord) and arrive 10 minutes prior to the scheduled time.

 Group size: We like to keep our workshops cozy and fun, so attendance is limited to 6 guests.

Once you’ve completed this workshop – you can take advantage of our open studio time to use the serger!

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