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Class Reviews > Palmer/Pletsch Fit Workshop

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Posted by: katharin

About katharin star
Member since: 7/31/02
Reviews: 38 (classes: 1)
Skill level:Intermediate
Favored by: 9 people
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Posted on: 8/9/11 9:15 AM
Rating: starstarstar
Review Rating: Helpful by 7 people   Very Helpful by 18 people   
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Since I bought the book FFRP (Fit for real people) in the late 90s, I had this dream to attend a fit workshop. This year I signed up for the Fit Workshop and everything around it, the "Shop 'Til You Drop" fabric store tour and the Color Analysis with Ethel Harms, and I stayed on another 5 days for the Sewing Camp.

Marta Alto and Pati Palmer are wonderful and very talented and experienced teachers. galadriel45 already wrote many details about the fit workshop so I just add my 2 cents.

Palmer Pletsch Sewing School is located inside a huge fabric store, Fabric Depot, that has everything around sewing, fabrics, notions, patterns, quilting, interior fabrics, sewing machines, gadgets, books, just everything. We got a discount of 30% for everything that we bought in the store. So during the workshop, when we were a little tired of trimming patterns and pin fitting, we could take a walk in the store, look at and feel fabrics or find sewing gadgets.

Pati offered fabric shopping consultations which truly enhanced fabric shopping. She helped each of us individually to chose the right fabrics in a flattering color for a pattern to create a matching wardrobe. We could take the fabric bolts inside the class room where other participants would also give their opinions. It made fabric shopping a lot of fun.

I had expected to take home techniques that "on McCalls patterns" (or substitute any pattern company name for McCalls) I would need to always make the same xxx alterations. We learned however that each pattern needs to be looked at individually, because pattern companies are not that consistent and because wearing ease can make a big difference in how a pattern fits and what kind of pattern alterations are needed. I was a little disappointed to hear this, but after spending 4 days of tissue fitting this totally made sense to me and I developed an eye for how a tissue fits on me. We could bring any pattern that we wanted to tissue fit, but it turned out easier to tissue fit patterns that are printed on thin paper (like the big4 etc) and not thick paper (like KwikSew etc) because thin paper is more flexible and easier to mold to the body.

It was learning experience to observe Marta and Pati (they are real experts!!) fit everyone and understand how a well fitting pattern looks pin fitted versus an ill fitting pattern.
Marta and Pati brought their finished garments of most of McCalls Palmer Pletsch patterns and the garments in size 10 that are photographed on the pattern envelope. So we could try on the size 10 finished garments, and get an idea how the style would look on us. Marta and Pati have their own beautiful wardrobes sewn from Palmer Pletsch patterns and they wore "Palmer Pletsch garments" every day. It was very inspiring to see how different the same garment looks in different fabrics. Marta said that she made the same shirt more than 10 times. This sounded sensible to me since tissue fitting and altering the pattern is a lot of work and the more often one makes the same pattern the faster one can do it.

We were all working very concentrated and could tissue pin fit many patterns. We were encourage to cut out at least one of our tissue fitted pattern in fabrics and pin fit it. I was totally amazed (almost shocked) how well it fitted. One participant cut out the same tank top in different fabrics, in woven and stretch and the fit was very different even for the wovens.

Graduation dinner at Pati's historical house gave the workshop a beautiful closure. Pati's husband Paul served wines and soft drinks. We could look at Pati's sewing studio and imagine how she and Marta recorded DVDs there. At the end of the evening, each of us received a graduation certificate.

Everything about the workshop is well organized. Monarch hotel where most of us stayed is in walking distance to a big shopping mall. The staff of Monarch hotel is very friendly. They drove us and picked us up everyday and always carefully handled our sewing luggage and garments full of pins. For lunch, a catering service served healthy delicious salads, breads and desserts every day in the class room. There was free coffee, tea and water.

I stayed for The Shop' Till You Drop fabric store tour and would absolutely recommend it. It is not just a plain shopping tour but more a wardrobe consulting and fabric teaching tour. Pati helped us find the best fabric for coordinating wardrobes and Marta has ideas for a fun garment for almost any fabrics.

The Color Consulting with Ethel Harms is also absolutely worthwhile taking. Ethel Harms worked as a model and has a long experience in color consulting. She really looks at each person very individually and analyses one's colors in a detailed way, and not in categories and she respects each persons tastes. After the color analysis, she makes an individualized little sample book like a fan made of colored fabric petals. Shopping is so much easier when knowing which colors make one look good. I found the session an eye opener.

I stayed for the Sewing Camp, which was equally fantastic (I may write a more detailed review later).

In conclusion, I was totally happy with my sewing holidays. Now I am confident that I can sew tops that fit well and fitting is now a process that I enjoy because I know what to do (for me). These sewing holidays were one of my best holidays ever. Marta Alto and Pati Palmer are wonderful and generous people and all participants were great and made the workshop unique. If you have the chance to attend a Palmer Pletsch Workshop, don't hesitate.

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SewingSan said... (9/23/11 8:39 PM) Reply
I can't wait to go next year! It sounds awesome.
Englishstitch said... (8/29/11 9:42 AM) Reply
Thanks for a really helpful review! I am booked to go on their fit workshop at the end of September, I am travelling all the way from England! But it sounds well worth travelling for!
KarmenG said... (8/25/11 7:33 AM) Reply
Thanks for all the info - I have always wanted to attend that sewing camp. I'm soooo jealous! Maybe I should take the plunge and GO!
Learn To Sew said... (8/21/11 9:48 PM) Reply
I enjoyed reading your review. I know you learned a lot and what you learned in this workshop will always be a wonderful and worthwhile experience for you. Just think how your fitting and sewing skills is going to improve.
Laurasews said... (8/11/11 10:39 PM) Reply
Hi Katharin! Everything you say is so true. Great review. I really enjoyed meeting you at Sewing Camp. Happy Sewing.
Restonshop said... (8/10/11 11:28 PM) Reply
Thanks for taking the time to write this review. Sounds as though the class was awesome.
SouthernStitch said... (8/10/11 6:03 PM) Reply
Wow you really have me wanting to go!! If only it weren't so far away.
Susieq777 said... (8/10/11 9:59 AM) Reply
Soumds wonderful. Wish l could have been there.
ballerina said... (8/10/11 9:42 AM) Reply
I agree totally with Katharin....this workshop is wonderful!!!
Lynngray said... (8/10/11 1:56 AM) Reply

Lynngray said... (8/10/11 1:55 AM) Reply

Lynngray said... (8/10/11 1:55 AM) Reply
Thanks, so much I have always wanted to go.l And it sounds like it would be great. Great Review.
Lynngray said... (8/10/11 1:54 AM) Reply

Patzee said... (8/10/11 0:26 AM) Reply
Very helpful review!
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