Saturday, August 31, 2013

Seven Core Sewing Skills by Cynthia Guffey

I'm a huge Cynthia Guffey fan. H-U-G-E! About a decade ago I spent two days at the Worcester Expo taking all of her classes.  Those classes, as well as, the books I brought home with me changed my sewing. It changed the way I measured myself, how I sewed and the speed with which I sewed.



Yesterday,  Ann McCormick left a message on Facebook about the Cynthia Guffey sewing classes on dailycrafttv.  Well you know I was all over this.  I purchased the Seven Core Sewing Skills to review here on the blog. There are two other classes and I will be purchasing both of them.  Ann also agreed to review one of the other classes, How to Fit a Jacket. (Updated to add a link to Ann's review, here!)

Now to give you a little background and I promise this will be short.  I've purchased a couple of Craftsy courses.  I've watched them about half way through and I've lost interest.  Not because they aren't thorough or well-taught but because I was bored.  This is not a judgement against Craftsy or the teacher.  It's me...totally me.  But for the Cynthia Guffey class I was glued to the computer and very resentful when I got a phone call and had to stop the video.  So a few observations...

The title makes it seem as if this would be a basic and easy video that discusses a few skills to up your game.  Ummmmm no!  About five minutes in, I knew this video was for the intermediate/advanced sewist.  Why do you ask? Because CG is delving hard into these topics.  She's not glossing over.  She is explaining the why-fors and the how-tos and if you're a newbie or an advanced beginner you will need to watch carefully to get what she's discussing.  Hey I stopped the tape a couple of times and rewatched a section because it was intricate and there is a lot of detail in the 59 minute video.

Her top seven skills ~
1.  Grain/Grainlines/Getting the grainline right
2.  Pinning the garment 
3.  Marking the garment
4.  Cutting the garment out
5.  Pressing the seams
6.  How to sew a perfect dart
7.  Matching seams at intersections

A huge part of this video is dedicated to grainlines and how to sew a garment perfectly on grain.  There are quite a few tips that will change how your garment hangs.  There were several pieces of information that just blew my mind...how Cynthia presses seams open, how she makes tailor tacks, how she handles seam intersections and how she clips a seam.

I will watch this video again, honestly several more times because there was so much information to glean from it that there was no way that I got it all the first time. Also, I want to incorporate quite a few of these things into my sewing to take my sewing to the next level.

Oh one more thing...the cost.  Each of CG's videos cost $9.99.  I think this is a price that most sewists can afford and it is sooooooo worth it!  Once you've paid for it, you can watch it over and over again.  Back it up...see it again...rewatch again and again until the techniques Cynthia teaches become habit.  At least that's what I'm going to do!

I highly recommend purchasing the videos.  There are more in the sewing section and some are less expensive than the $9.99.  It's another video resource that can only help you enhance your craft.

...as always more later!

42 comments:

  1. I still thread my sewing machine exactly the way she taught in one of her Expo classes!

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  2. Can you confirm these are video tapes not cd's or dvd's?

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  3. I spent the evening learning about net gain & net loss via K. King's smart fitting dvd and always looking for more sewing resources. Thanks for sharing.

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  4. I have taken a few CG classes over the years and she put on all day program for our local ASG several years ago. Glad you shared info about these videos.

    I have enjoyed one of the Craftsy classes by Lynda Maynard and find that I love being able to view classes at my leisure and to rewatch certain areas over and over until I get it!!!

    I am real excited to learn about daily craft tv as that one has escaped me. Thanks for posting this info.

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  5. Thanks Carolyn! I will do this. May, may, you must be very persuasive because I am very cantankerous :)

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  6. I'm so glad you let us know about these videos. I knew Cynthia had taped something and was anxiously awaiting their release. I have taken a lot of classes from her and this will be a wonderful reminder of all that information. There's no way to remember everything - every class is stuffed with tips. I put Cynthia Guffey, Susan Khalje, and Kenneth King at the extreme top of sewing gurus.

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  7. This sounds awesome! Thanks for the review!

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  8. Are the videos captioned? I won't be able to follow along otherwise.

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  9. Oh, I'm definitely intrigued. I think I'm going to try out the Jacket Fitting one. I definitely know what you're saying about the Craftsy courses. Though I like them (and I've taught one) the staff encourage you to tell stories along the way and really, when you're watching the videos they end up feeling really long and well, boring. I don't know if this is how the Cynthia Guffey videos are, but even just watching the intro, I felt that it was about cutting to the chase.

    I love the affordability of the classes too! Definitely a price range that all of us can afford.

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  10. Oh thank you!! I have been wanting to take a class with Cynthia Guffey for a while now and this will allow me to do so since she never seems to teach classes in my area.

    Thanks for the heads up!!

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  11. Carolyn I just posted my review on the jacket class and it is pretty awesome too :) Her classes are so jam packed with information. I am So happy this one iS JUST AS AMAZING.

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  12. Carolyn, I just bought 2 of her classes - the core skills and the jacket one, on your recommendation of CG. I did checked out her 2 min video on Youtube(tips on jacket fitting) first before I bought these 2 classes, just to be sure I like her teaching style and her delivery.

    As soon as I bought it, I had to watch it of course. But Half way through the core skills video, I had to stop it and come back to say THANK YOU for the recommendation!!! Wow!! It's a great class. And I'm learning a lot.

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  13. Thank Carolyn for sharing this info. I singed for few classes on Craftsy and I did a review on my blog. I had the same experience you had with the first class ! the second class was greatttt! I will be checking the site out. Thanks again.

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  14. Thanks for posting these! I have bought tons of Craftsy classes and love most of them but still haven't watched most to the end yet because my attention wanders :-). I will definitely check these out because the prices are so affordable.

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  15. I'm going to try the jacket fitting class..thanks for your info..I've never heard of her but she looks like she knows her stuff... thanks!

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  16. Thank you so much for this information. I purchased several Craftsy classes and felt a little underwhelmed (especially for the price). I, too, purchased the Sandra Betzina package--haven't watched it all, but I found it lacking. I thought it was me. I hadn't heard of Daily Craft TV. Wish I had before I invested in Craftsy. Anyway, purchased a few classes and I'll see how it goes. Seems to be getting good reviews. Again, thanks for the info!

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  17. I purchased all three classes today. I just finished watching the seven techniques and I learned so much. Thanks for the link.

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  18. Oh my God Carolyn! I read your post went straight to the site and purchased the videos. I had to pause the first one to tell you how much I;ve already learned after watching less than half. I,to,o'have been underwhelmed by the Crafty classes and have gotten too bored to finish. I'm so happy I can still learn stuff!!!Thank you.
    BTW, I know Ann quite well and we're getting together next week for lunch and fabric shopping!

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  19. Thank you for recommending such great classes. I bought the core skills and the jacket one and am sooo happy with the purchase.

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  20. Thanks for the info. The price is small for improved sewing!

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  21. You made my mouth water with this review, so I just bought bought this video and the jacket one. Can't wait to watch them, thank you so much, Carolyn!

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  22. I LOVE Cynthia Guffey. I took a couple of her seminars at the sewing expo. The expo was many years ago and the highlights were her classes on fitting (she was wearing the best leather vest ever) and Louise Cutting's seminars. I'm definitely going to take her classes!!

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  23. I love Cynthia's classes. I took all of them years ago at the Expos in Atlanta and Kansas City, plus her all-day classes. Then I bought all of her books and DVDs. She's a great teacher, and funny too.

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  24. Thank you so much for the link. I hadn't even heard of Daily Craft TV but I will be heading back over to the site to learn more! I do enjoy the Craftsy classes - especially Susan Khalje's class as I think she is awesome. But I think with Craftsy you are paying more for the tutor access/message boards (which I don't always use) and for the class patterns etc when what I am really interested in is learning new skills. From the little I have seen, these videos seem to focus more on that aspect. And at a great price!

    Hope you are enjoying your sewcation!

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  25. Thank you so much for turning me on to Cynthia's classes. She is wonderful, and I have signed up for two of them, watched them both and can't wait to get started sewing! I feel her techniques will profoundly change the quality of my work. Thank you Carolyn!

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  26. Can't wait to check these out!!!!

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  27. Thank you for pointing me to the classes as well. I will purchase her classes to view when I get a new desk job.

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  28. Thank you for pointing me to the classes as well. I will purchase her classes to view when I get a new desk job.

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  29. I only knew of Cynthia Guffy 3 years ago when I attended my first expo (Chantilly, VA). She was, by far MY FAVORITE. :-). Even though many of the techniques were above my head and expertise (then and now), her teaching style as as such were any level can relate and learn from her. I'd always wondered why I hadn't seen her on any other websites other than her own..THANK YOU for sharing this information.

    It's good to see her featured on other venues. :-)

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  30. Thanks for the recommendation--reading the description and listening to the teaser video wouldn't have tempted me to buy, but hearing from a highly skilled sewist that there's lots to learn--they should pay YOU!

    BTW, if you're not satisfied with a Craftsy class, you can ask for a refund. I did on a class where I watched several lessons and thought, "Why did I pay for this?"
    They credited my charge card the next business day, and asked me to give them details of what I didn't like about the class.

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  31. Why? You know I can't pass this up now, just based on your recommendation. You really are one of the sewing bloggers that I admire most and if you love it, I'm hooked.

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  32. I, too, love Cynthia!!!! I took her classes several years ago and was her classroom assistant as well, at the Sewing Expo in Chantilly, VA. She is hilarious! Some don't like her brash attitude, but this lady has a wealth of knowledge and her clothing is exquisitely made! After taking her classes, my sewing improved dramatically!!!!!

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  33. Thank you for letting us know about such a great resource. I learned so much and I think my sewing is really going to improve. I'm ready to buy her other videos because I learned so much in this one.

    Thanks again!

    To the person looking for captions. There wasn't an option for captions I could find. :-(

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  34. This is just my opinion, but I think why the craftsy classes dont appeal to you as much is because you have mastered the art of fitting your wonderful creations. Unlike me, who is still struggling to get it right :)
    With the vidio I watched of Cynthia's her's are tips for when you are past the fitting stage.

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  35. Thanks! Cynthia Guffey is a fabulous teacher.

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  36. Cynthia Guffey is one teacher that I will repeat classes at the Expo from one year to the next, even if she's covering the same material. She's just that good, and I'm just that slow! So glad these are out there; a treat for after I get by the data migration and can think about sewing again...

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  37. Thanks for pointing me to Cynthia Guffrey and DailyCraftTV! I watched the jacket video and fully recommend it. Moreover, it came perfectly at the right moment.

    I was just fitting a block on my mom. She has a substantial upper back bulge and I totally misdiagnosed the stress lines at the lower armholes. I pinched out the excess fabric and rotated it into the bust dart. Not good ;-). The video really was an eye opener. I went back to the first muslin and just horizontally slashed the upper back. With about two inches extra length added, all fitting issues in the shoulder and armhole area completely vanished. Impressive. Just as Cynthia Guffrey had told.

    Now, I would love to see her fitting sleevs and pants!

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  38. thanks for cuing us in to these videos. I've seen Cynthia in action, and agree she's fantastic. Videos of her in action - yes!!

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  39. thanks for the recommendation! I am another CG fan and have attended her classes at Expos many times. She explains concepts beautifully and has a great personality & enthusiasm for sewing. I signed up for the class. I know what you mean about Craftsy sewing classes. I have loved the quilting classes, maybe because I was a newbie and everything was new. For the sewing classes, I probably already knew the material and therefore it was too long for me. But the 1 hour class is much better use of my time & the price is right!

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  40. Hi Carolyn. Thanks for your kind words left at my blog. Much appreciated.

    I remember the time you were at Worster Expo. That was the only time I attended Expos, of any crafts. I still remember it being very fun and informative. I took only one or two of Cynthia Gaffey's classes. I wish I had attended all of them as you did. So, thanks for bringing this information to my attention. I will find time to watch her lessons.

    Hugs,
    May

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  41. Thanks for the info! Another huge CG fan here. When I first saw her a million years ago I was so envious that her business was making custom garments using fabrics from her fabric store. (I still think that's a great idea.) I've never even heard of the daily craft tv - I'm really out of touch :( Will have to find some time to check it out.

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  42. Another big thank you for mentioning these classes. I think the core skills are going to improve my results hugely! It's not just the "what" but the "why" that makes all the difference.

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