A month or so back, the owner of Three Little Birds, a sewing store and studio in Hyattsville, MD, and I first met via Instagram. This online meeting resulted in my stopping into the store to do a bit of fabric shopping. An offer to teach lingerie sewing classes was extended and I excitedly agreed.
Three lingerie sewing classes, Perfect Panties, were scheduled. So far, I have taught two of the three classes and enjoyed them so much!
Professionally, I am a teacher. I have been working in education at various levels (middle school, high school, and university) and have held many different roles (teacher, literacy coach, school administrator, and district administrator) since 2004. A year ago I earned a Ph.D. in secondary literacy. I literally ate, slept, and breathed education while I worked on my degree. It was grueling and wonderful. Ultimately, I adore working with students and am the best version of myself when I am teaching. Simply put, education is my jam.
While teaching sewing isn’t the exact same thing as teaching secondary or university classes, there are a lot of similarities. For example, the basics of teaching remain the same. Directions must be clear and sequential. Students should be supported to success and a job well done should be celebrated. In some ways, it is even better than teaching in a traditional classroom. No one is forced to take my class, so there isn’t any grumbling or snarky comments. I also don’t have to manage any errant adolescent behaviors (spitballs, thrown pencils, curse words, etc.).
Reflecting on what makes teaching sewing so enjoyable, I identified three reasons why I love teaching sewing:
- Everyone taking the class has a growth mindset. They are hungry to learn something new and excited about their learning. I find this really energizing.
- Nothing is graded. In Perfect Panties, everyone gets an A+! Sewing with stretch fabrics and elastics for the first time is hard. The first pair of panties I created certainly wasn’t perfect and my students’ aren’t either, but that doesn’t mean that they aren’t perfectly wonderful! They are the first in a hopefully long line of successful panty makes that will become more professional looking with patience and practice. Victoria Secret can eat her heart out.
- I get to empower women. Lingerie retailers like the one mentioned above sell panties for tiny bums while many high end brands price out the average woman. $100 panties, anyone? By learning to make your own, you take control. You can make panties out of luxury materials that fit your bum perfectly for a fraction of the cost of high end RTW. I don’t think it gets more empowering than that!
I can’t wait to teach my next class. It promises to be a fantastic learning experience!
If you live in the D.C. metro area and are interested in joining us, class will be held on Sunday, October 22 at 11:00am at Three Little Birds Sewing Company. Click here for their website to register.