Introduction to The Overlocker - Make a Raglan Top or T-Shirt

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Introduction to The Overlocker - Make a Raglan Top or T-Shirt

Tuesday 27 August 2019

Session: 1


Time: 10.30am - 5.00pm

Level: Improvers

Maximum Class Size: 6

Find your confidence in setting up, threading and adjusting tension on an overlocker to neaten your raw edges professionally.

Level: This course is designed for confident machine sewers who are new to overlockers

This two-session course is intended to unravel the mystery associated with the overlocker so that you can get the most out of this versatile machine. During the class you will learn how to thread and use a four-thread overlocker plus maintain and troubleshoot any problems you encounter along the way. We will provide you with the practical skills to use your overlocking machine confidently and appropriately to help you make garments with a very professional finish. During the second session you will practice everything that you have learned by making a basic raglan sleeve top; the pattern you will be using has long sleeves however you can shorten these to suit your style!

During this class you will cover the following techniques:

Morning Session - Learn the skills

  • Threading up your machine

  • Adjust tension and stitch length

  • Maintenence and how to replace needles

  • Use of accessories

  • Adjust the blade position

  • Overlock sample fabrics (woven and stretchy)

  • Afternoon Session - Make your top

  • Re-thread your machine

  • Troubleshooting

  • Sew corners, curved edges and hems 

  • Make your top

  • You will leave the course with reference samples showing the techniques you have learnt, a finished top and the pattern so you can make more at home!

    What to bring: Please bring your overlocker if you have one, it will more beneficial to learn using your own machine as each one is different. Remember your manual, pedal and accessories (including the toolkit, tweezers, screwdrivers & allen keys). Please email us with details of the make and model of your machine. It should be in good working order.

    We can provide you with an overlocker if you don't have one, please let us know in advance.

    Machine buying advice: Penny recommends the Janome 9200D. It's simple to use, is a great, robust domestic overlocker and is good value for money too at £229.
 Unfortunately we don't recommend you purchase the Singer overlocker from Lidl!  This is a difficult machine, prone to breaking.  If you already own one of these machines, bring it along to your workshop anyway but please let us know in advance.

    Private one-to-one classes: If you aren’t able to come to this class of the dates advertised then you can book a private class with Penny to cover all the techniques mentioned above. Sessions are a minimum of two hours, please get in touch to enquire.

    Student Testimonials:

    “This course met my objective. I am more confident with my overlocker. Penny’s expertise - and patience - made this very worthwhile. And although she did not know my particular machine she learned it so that I was not disadvantaged!” - Margaret

    “Brilliant class. Penny was so knowledgable and patient. I really feel like I know the workings of my overlocker now, how to use it confidently and troubleshoot. I also enjoyed the conversation while we sewed too. This was my first class at Ray Stitch and I will definitely book more.” - Rachel

    “Great for novices to this complicated bit of kit! Penny was very patient and understanding of our varying ability and need.”

    “The course was great because it showed me that I could use the overlocker to make an entire garment as I used to think it was just an accessory to the sewing machine. Learning to thread the machines was very useful. The top we made was perfect as it was the right level of difficulty. Penny provided just the right amount of support, she showed everyone individual attention and adapted the class as needed. I loved the class and gained a lot!” - Carla


    Penny Follows has sewn since an early age, indeed she does not remember a time when she didn’t sew! She was fortunate enough to have a mother who was a skilled needlewoman and who created all sorts of stylish clothes for herself and Penny. Penny was encouraged to sew for herself by her mother and two grandmothers, one of whom was a tailoress. Penny worked with Janome as a sewing consultant at John Lewis and taught machine sewing at their flagship store in Oxford Street for a number of years. Penny joined our team of teachers at Ray Stitch in 2016 and leads a variety of workshops, sharing her passion and enthusiasm for sewing and making clothes. She combines teaching with running her own business called The Village Seamstress taking most pleasure in creating bespoke garments for clients.