Learn to sew a sweatshirt – Tilly and the Buttons Billie sweater/sweater dress


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Learn to sew a sweatshirt – Tilly and the Buttons Billie sweater/sweater dress

“Cool, casual and modern, Billie is an ultra-comfy sweatshirt or sweater dress.” “It has a relaxed shape, crew neckline and classic trim details. Keep it effortless with cuffed, straight sleeves, or add some drama with on-trend balloon sleeves and deep cuffs. Choose between top length which sits on the high hip, or mini dress which finishes 10cm (4in) above the knee with gorgeous cutaway pockets.”  (taken from the Tilly and the Buttons website)

This workshop is suitable for those who have used a sewing machine before, can confidently thread the machine and bobbin and have sewn several projects before. If you need a beginners class or a refresher then have a look at beginners classes available. Please get in touch if you are not sure whether this is a suitable level for you.

You will learn how to:

  • Take essential body measurements and select your pattern size
  • Identify pattern pieces required
  • Lengthen/shorten pattern pieces if required
  • Accurately cut out pattern pieces
  • Identify the grainline of the fabric and lay out pattern pieces correctly
  • Follow a commercial sewing pattern
  • Cut stretch fabric accurately
  • Top tips on how to sew with stretch fabric on a regular sewing machine
  • Stabilise necklines and hems on stretch garments
  • Top stitch using a twin needle (optional)

If this is your first garment or first time using stretchy fabrics, I would suggest you choose to sew the sweatshirt version. If you are more confident then you could choose the dress or balloon sleeved version.

What is included:

  • Paper pattern and step by step instruction booklet worth £17.50 .
  • Full tuition in order to make your garment

Pattern sizing

The Billie sewing pattern is sized between UK sizes 6-34.

You will need to measure yourself in order to know how much fabric to get. You cannot compare to high street sizes. Please get in touch if you are uncertain.

You will need to measure your bust, waist and hips. Please refer to my blog post on measuring yourself accurately.

You will need to get:

  • Fabric – approximately 1.5m-4m (depends on your size and which version). Upon booking you will be given guidance on how much fabric you will need based on your measurements.
  • Optional :
  • Ribbing – You can use separate ribbing for the cuffs, hem band, neckline or use the same fabric as the main garment.

I would recommend using ribbing for cuffs etc, if main fabric has less than 20% stretch. For a regular sleeve you will need 0.6m of ribbing and for the balloon sleeve you will need 0.7m of ribbing.

If your fabric is particularly stretchy you can stabilise the shoulder seams using 30cm (12″) of 6-9mm (1/4″) wide satin ribbon.

Fabric suggestions: 

Sweatshirt fleece, French terry, Ponte Roma, double knit, interlock or sweater knit with at least 10% stretch. 

Please give me a call if you are in any doubt about fabric choices or suggestions of where to buy from.

It is recommended to pre wash your fabric before the workshop as it is likely to shrink a little in the first wash. Do not hang your fabric to dry as it will stretch out of shape – dry flat.

Cost £110

Lorna says:

“This has been such a popular Tilly and the Buttons’ pattern and you can see why. I absolutely love this pattern (as you can see from my 3 versions!!). So comfy to wear and with the 3 options in the one pattern, it offers great value for money. Perfect working from home attire! It is a great pattern for those new to sewing with stretch or for those a bit more confident that would like to improve their skills further.

My versions :

Additional information


Tuesday 28th February & Tuesday 7th March 2023 (2 part) – 9.30am-1pm


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