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Workshops & Courses for 2011 at Mostyn & Liverpool

The programme of Workshops & Courses for January 2011 - October 2011 are now available, and will be running at both our Mostyn (North Wales) and Liverpool stores. Classes include Dressmaking, Felting, Machine Embroidery, Creative Fabrics, Beading, Fascinators & so much more!

More Information & Bookings. For more information & to reserve a place on a Workshop or Course, please click HERE

Download Brochure. For full details on all Workshops & Courses at Abakhan, including a diary of FREE Demonstrations & Events at Abakhan we suggest you download a Brochure - please click HERE

Take a Dressmaking Course with Abakhan

Having the ability to design and create clothes is not only a skill but an art. It is many a females’ dream to be able to have a perfect, one of a kind dress that is unique to her and no one else. Now with Abakhan , you can make that dream a reality with our avant-garde, creative and inspirational dressmaking courses

With Christmas and the party season fast approaching, what better way to attend an occasion but with a one of a kind dress. Or if dressmaking is not your cup of tea, but you have a friend or family member who is a budding fashionista, then why not buy one our bespoke dressmaking courses for a loved one this Christmas?

With a variety of courses available from our beginner, intermediate and advanced courses to our ‘Tips and Trim’s’ course that predominantly focuses on a variety of techniques, there is a dressmaking courses for any female no matter her age or ability.

Why not turn your hobby into professional status with our ‘Hobby to Professional’ dressmaking course? The ‘Little Black Dress’ course is a fabulous experience for any female determined to make her own ‘little black dress’. Is there a little girl in your life who you know would love nothing more than to look like a princess? Then why not attend our ‘Little Girls Party Dress’ course and turn a dream into a reality.

Our inspiring dressmaking courses range from £25+ and are available at a variety of locations on a number of different dates. Buy today, and no matter your level in dressmaking, you will be provided with the very best skills and knowledge to create the perfect, one of a kind, fabricated dress.

For more information on any of our courses, contact Abakhan by calling 01745 562 100, or pop into your local branch. Click here to find yours.

Become the next top designer – Top Tips for Dressmaking

So, you’re interested in dressmaking, but you are a complete beginner. Don’t worry, everyone has to start somewhere. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of basic tips for trying your hand at dressmaking, ranging from the tools you will need to taking the correct measurements.

Tools of the trade

Probably the most important place to start when dressmaking is your tools. What exactly do you need? Collect these basic tools, pop them in a sewing box and you can’t go wrong.

Dressmakers pins

Tape measure

Sewing needles

Dressmaking scissors

Tailor’s chalk


You can start off hand sewing, afterall, this is how people started dressmaking, but a sewing machine will make your dressmaking faster and easier in the long run.

Choosing a sewing machine

Choosing a sewing machine isn’t as daunting as it sounds; for dressmaking a basic sewing machine will suffice. All sewing machines are electronic, generally using a single motor, which is perfect for a beginner. As you become a more advanced dressmaker you may want to invest in a computerised sewing machine.

When choosing your first sewing machine consider a machine that offers different stitching options as well as a selection of foot attachments (to allow basic tasks including inserting zips.)


Start with a pattern, this way you will have something to work towards.

To begin with, use patterns that are labeled as ‘easy’ – dresses with no waistline or sleeves are the easiest.

As well as giving you something to work towards, a pattern will indicate how much fabric will be needed as well as giving you an idea of the best fabric to use.

It’s important to take your measurements and buy a pattern based on these measurements.


When dressmaking, taking the correct measurements is critical. Follow our quick and easy guide to ensure you collect the right measurements.

Waist – using your tape measure, measure your natural waistline – hold the tape so it fits snugly around your waist – but not tight.

Hips – measure the fullest part of your hips all the way around your body.

Bust – measure around the fullest part of your bust - this is one measurement. Then measure around the body just above the bust, across the back and under the arms - this is your second bust measurement.

Back to waist – measure from the most prominent bone at the top of your neck down to your natural waist.

Height – make sure you stand straight!


With thousands of fabrics to choose from, it can sometimes be difficult making a decision. Take into consideration how the fabric you are using feels against your skin – is it comfortable? Below, we have listed some of the main fabric options:

Cotton – incredibly versatile, cotton can be used to create almost anything and is available in varying weights.

Cotton Jersey – generally used to make t-shirts, cotton jersey is a stretchy and comfortable fabric.

Wool – more often than not wool will need to be dry-cleaned. Can be expensive and is often used to make suits and coats.

Linen – often blended with cotton and is perfect for summer clothing.

Silk – a luxury fabric, often expensive and quite difficult to sew with.

Polyester and polycotton – synthetic fabrics that are lightweight and quite cheap to buy.

A top tip for dressmaking is to wash your fabric before you begin – this will ensure that your final creation doesn’t shrink during its first wash.

Dressmaking is a great way to update your wardrobe, without breaking the bank. From taster dressmaking courses to advanced dressmaking classes, Abakhan covers all your dressmaking educational needs, click here to view our latest workshops and classes.

Dressmaking – Become the next big designer

Every dressmaker has to start somewhere; all you need is a little creativity and some fabric. Are you sick of stepping out of the house only to find that 7 other people are wearing exactly the same outfit as you? Well, we have the solution; make your own! Why spend a fortune on one-of-a-kind pieces when you can make them yourself, specific to your own measurements. If you’re interested in learning how to make your own clothes, but have no idea where to start then try one of our dressmaking workshops.

A Taster in Dressmaking

If you’re a complete beginner looking to see if dressmaking is for you, then this 1-hour taster session is perfect! Take a test drive through dressmaking by constructing an apron, and the best part? All materials are included!

Advanced Dressmaking

Ideal for an advanced sewer looking to shift up a gear, if you are familiar with patterns and can work independently, this is the workshop for you. This workshop is designed to aid you with the more difficult tasks of dressmaking but also allow you to work on your creations independently, away from the class. You will be designing and creating a fitted jacket and we will provide a choice of materials in different colours.

Why not really delve even further into your creative side with a Corsetry workshop?

This 3-day course will guide you through the important steps of corset making with a hands-on approach – using lacing, binding, boning, seams, eyeleting, cutting and fitting over 3 days you will create a corset specific to your own measurements. This course will provide a starter pack, patterns and notes, but you may need to purchase additional items during the course.

Check out our workshops section for classes close to you and don’t forget to tweet any of your new creations at @AbakhanFabrics – we’d love to see them

Dressmaking Courses: What To Expect

If you’re trying to decide whether it’s worth you investing in a dressmaking course (and it isn’t a decision you should take lightly), there are many things that you should consider. Hopefully our run-down on the things you can expect will help you decide whether it’s the right investment for you:

Firstly, you should definitely expect to spend some time working with a sewing machine, so if the idea rather alarms you, either consider yourself warned or don’t attend the course! Sewing machine skills are essential when it comes to creating dresses (doing so by hand would take ages), so don’t be surprised when you walk into a room full of them!

You’ll also be getting involved in designing a range of different types of dresses, so if you’ve only ever created dresses of a specific kind before, be prepared to get a bit out of your comfort zone. Obviously, once you’re used to it you’ll be a far better dressmaker than you started, so it’s well worth the effort.

Also, if you’ve never really done much fabric work before, be prepared to work with quite a wide variety of kit, including fabric scissors, pins, needles, thread and the like. Obviously it’s likely you’ll have carried out some form of needlework before, but just in case you haven’t – be prepared!

To find out more about dressmaking courses, give Abakhan a call.

Do It Yourself: How Dressmaking Courses Can Benefit You

There can’t be many more interesting ways to spend an evening than by working on a dress that’s entirely your own creation. After all, that’s how all of the greatest fashion designers started! However, if you’ve never really tried out any dressmaking courses before, you might be unsure about how they can benefit you. Well, read on, and we’ll tell you!

It’ll mean you can share your creativity and become inspired. Whilst the technical side of dressmaking is without doubt important (it’s only a dream until it’s made!), it’s nothing without that spark of ingenuity that creates the design itself. Being around others with a passion for dressmaking will further ignite your passion for this unique skill.

It’ll teach you the technical skills you need. Alright, this is sort of a contradiction with the above, but we promise it makes sense! Just as technicality without inspiration can be unvaried, creativity without technicality can be rather messy! A good tutor will be able to help you improve your existing technique as well as learning new ones, making you a more confident dressmaker all round.

Finally, whilst it might not be a haberdashery reason as such, it’s a great way to meet people who have the same passion for fashion and creativity that you do. Dressmaking courses are taught by people who love what they do, and taught to people who love what they do. Get involved, and you won’t regret it.

To find out more about how dressmaking courses can benefit you, get in contact with Abakhan now.