The human race began sewing clothes, shoes, and home goods as early as 45,000 years ago. What started out as needles made from bone and thread made from animal sinew turned into sewing as we know it today. But present-day sewing isn’t that much different from what it was thousands of years ago.

Sewing techniques like the running stitch are a common thread between thousands of generations and cultures around the globe. In the modern world, advancements like sewing machines and cutting tools have made sewing simpler and more efficient. But the dependable abilities of a needle and thread can still be used for many diverse sewing projects.  

Sew Many Sewing Projects 

Today’s sewing crafts can be anything from making or mending clothes in the same way seamstresses did 200 years ago, to creating current digital fabric printing trends. The beauty of this hobby is being able to explore the world of sewing in whichever way inspires you most.

The farther you dive into sewing, the more you’ll value handmade goods, connect with your history and save money by crafting your own products. 

Sewing Fundamentals: Your First Zippered Project Made Easy

A blue, zippered pouch covered in abstract gold leaves sits on a white marble table. A brown, quilted and zippered pouch lies on its side next to the blue pouch.
You’ve got this sewing project in the bag. Still from Skillshare Class Sewing Fundamentals: Your First Zippered Project Made Easy by Dylan Mierzwinski.

Learning to sew in a straight line can lead you straight into more advanced techniques that add purpose and charm to your projects. Take your newly acquired mastery and make a zippered accessory for you or your loved ones. Yes, it’s that easy! Or it will be once you dive into this sewing basics class.

You’ll discover how to prep and cut fabric, sew a zipper, assemble your pouch, and put the fun in functional with this practical and pretty pouch. 

Sewing Alterations: Fit Shirts to Your Body with Darts & Seam Adjustments

Kneeling in the grass, the artist points to the edge of a button up shirt with a purple marker. The button up shirt is red, yellow, orange, green, and blue. It also lays in the grass next to some sewing pins.
Take perfectly fitting clothes into your own hands. Still from Skillshare Class Sewing Alterations: Fit Shirts to Your Body with Darts & Seam Adjustments by Maura Marcks.

There’s a certain type of magic in finding a piece of clothing that fits just right. Since it’s not always easy to find  that tailor-made feeling right off the shelf, learning how to alter items yourself means owning clothes catered just to you. With a perfectly customized wardrobe, you’ll breathe more confidence into your personal style and give new life to secondhand pieces.

With simple techniques, you’ll resize shirts through sewing alterations like front darts, side seams, and even a shoulder adjustment. If you’re looking to fully create your own garments someday, consider this class your primer.

Hand Sewing Basics: Work Wonders with Fabric, Needle & Thread

Two hands pop out of white sleeves from the wrists up from the bottom of the frame. The hands sew black thread onto a white fabric swatch. Below the hands and the fabric is a wooden table, some thread, and a pair of black scissors.
An older art form, hand sewing is still enjoyed—and useful—today. Still from Skillshare Class Hand Sewing Basics: Work Wonders with Fabric, Needle & Thread by Bernadette Banner.

Even if you’ve never picked up a needle and thread before, hand sewing can launch you into your next favorite hobby. The soothing art of hand sewing is ideal for its precision and portability.

As you work through basic stitches and learn how to sew on a button, you’ll walk away with a greater appreciation for every bit of care that goes into needlecraft. 

Sewing Basics: Make Your Own Clothing

Two arms come in from off screen and hold a piece of a mustard-, salmon-, rust-, and white-colored tank top. The artist is pinning a new piece of white fabric to the rest of the top. To her left sit a few bobbins, thread, and a pair of scissors. 
No better way to beat the microtrends than to create a wardrobe completely unique to you. Still from Skillshare Class Sewing Basics: Make Your Own Clothing by Denise Bayron.

Learning how to sew clothes can open up new doors to personal empowerment, greater confidence and a beautiful, handmade wardrobe. From sewing basics to finishing techniques, you’ll take a creative journey from fabric to finished piece.

Prepare yourself to head out into the world and proudly share that the lovely top you’re wearing was made by your own two hands. 

Boro Stitching Basics: Sewing an Upcycled Pouch

Light pink, blue, green, and yellow patches of fabric cover this hand-crafted pouch with the help of Boro stitching.
From clutch to art supplies pouch, this upcycled pouch is made to be enjoyed. Still from Skillshare Class Boro Stitching Basics: Sewing an Upcycled Pouch by Casey Gallagher Newman.

A method that began as a delightful way to mend clothing in Japan, boro stitching is now used for so much more. This decorative technique connects patches of fabric together through patterns to create something truly special.

In this class, you’ll use boro stitching to make a piece of fabric that you can turn into an eco-conscious upcycled pouch.  

How to Draw With a Sewing Machine - Free Motion 101

Both calming and deeply creative, learning how to free motion sew will have you using thread as a drawing tool. Still from Skillshare Class How to Draw With a Sewing Machine - Free Motion 101 by Jordan Gomez.

If you enjoy the feeling of doodling on a blank sheet of paper or creating outside of the box, you’ll love free motion sewing. As a way to draw with your sewing machine, this thread-based art form opens hundreds of new possibilities for future sewing projects.

You’ll start by doodling with thread on postcard-sized pieces of fabric. In doing so, you’ll discover how to easily adjust your sewing machine to go from standard sewing to free motion, and how to get a successful start anytime you wish to draw with thread. 

Sewing Fundamentals: Learn How to Sew Your First Pillowcase

Two hands on a sewing table, measuring a cutting a piece of blue fabric with gnomes on it. There are sewing tools scattered around the table.
One night’s sleep on this hand-crafted pillowcase and you’ll be dreaming of even more sewing projects. Still from Skillshare Class Sewing Fundamentals: Learn How to Sew Your First Pillowcase by Jessica Pierce.

Time spent creating is time well spent, especially when it provides a moment of calm and a functional finished product. The fundamental sewing skills you’ll learn will help you take the next step in your sewing journey.

Crafted for complete beginners or those looking for a sewing refresh class, you’ll uncover everything you need to know about how to sew a pillowcase. 

Illustrated Textiles: Design, Print and Sew a Cushion

Square pillow with a green background with several types of birds and multicolored leaves, and a braided trim around its perimeter. It sits on a yellow throw that's draped over a wooden chair.
Move over, pricey pillows. There’s a new sewist—that's sewer + artist—in town. Still from Skillshare Class Illustrated Textiles: Design, Print and Sew a Cushion by Ellie Shipman.

Cozy up with a unique cushion cover by making your own digitally printed textile. You’ll start this project by creating a project brief and mood board, and you’ll finish by printing and sewing your own personalized cushion cover.

With fabric as your canvas, you’ll be able to create a home decor piece that doubles as a one-of-a-kind home for your artwork. 

Sewing Your First Quilt Block: A Quilting Project For Beginners

Two hands sit at the bottom left and right edges of a quilted square. Made with blue and white flower fabric, lightly patterned red fabric, and orange and pink lemon fabric, it sits next to a variety of other fabrics.
Building a foundational quilting practice starts at square one. Still from Skillshare Class Sewing Your First Quilt Block: A Quilting Project For Beginners by Esther Nariyoshi.

Each quilt tells a story. The combinations of fabric chosen for a project and how each one fits together reveals a tale of color, pattern, and juxtaposition. If you’re new to quilting, this class will cover the foundational skills needed to craft a quilt block.

You’ll leave with your quilted piece of art as well as the tools you need to turn blocks into something bigger, like a quilt. Plus, you’ll receive a downloadable pattern which will continue to guide you even after you finish this class. 

Stitch Up Those Loose Threads

Now it’s time to pluck that needle out of the haystack, grab your thread and get sewing. After taking a moment to look through traditional sewing projects like boro stitching to modern ones like zipper pouches, you have all you need to begin this creative journey. 

A new sewing adventure can begin anywhere. Resist the urge to only start sewing when you feel 100% ready. Just pick up the loose threads wherever they are, and give a new project a go! 

Written By

Calli Zarpas

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