Master Patchwork and Quilting for Sewing Clothes with Diana Rodgers

Master Patchwork and Quilting for Sewing Clothes with Diana Rodgers

I’m excited to introduce you to sewing instructor Diana Rodgers, and I’m thrilled to work with her in our upcoming virtual sewing course Patchwork and Quilting for Garment Sewing. Diana has a comprehensive background in sewing, design, art, and education. Since receiving a BFA from The Fashion Institute of Technology, Diana has pursued three creative career paths—fashion designer, manufacturer, and sewing educator. Sewing is the common thread among all three.

While most of her days are spent teaching people of all ages how to sew, Diana also makes time to sew her own wardrobe. She loves working on soft sculptures, embroideries, and quilts too. Her career highlights include teaching over 1,000 people how to use a sewing machine and selling her products to MoMA Design Store.

Read on to learn more about Diana!

I hear you’ve been sewing for around 30 years! How did you get started, and how did you end up teaching sewing full-time today?

I first started sewing as a teenager, and then earned a BFA in Fashion Design at The Fashion Institute of Technology in NYC. This is where I really learned how garments are made. After graduation, I worked for nearly a decade as a fashion designer in the corporate world. Then in 2006, I started my own small business, Wonder Threads, where I made and sold a variety of products, all sewn by me. I had a lot of fun, but after 8 years of mass production sewing, and having to sell in person for 8 months a year, I was burnt out. I started searching for other creative opportunities, and ended up finding a job teaching sewing to kids. A year later, I started teaching adult sewing classes too. I still teach both kids and adults how to sew, but adults are my favorite.

What’s your favorite part of teaching sewing?

I love connecting with new people over sewing. One of my favorite parts of teaching is when students realize how much work goes into creating a garment, and then they realize how underpriced store-bought clothing can be. I often teach beginners who enter the classroom having never sewn before, and a few hours later they leave with something they sewed themselves. It’s exciting to teach people a new skill and to witness them realize they have the power to make anything they want.

What's your favorite thing you've ever sewed for yourself?

One of my favorites is the jacket pictured above. I made it this year, and it feels so me. When I wear it I feel confident because it represents my true style. I love knowing that it’s a completely unique garment—no one else has the same jacket!

When I first started sewing, I made my own prom dress. It had everything from boning to crinoline to lace to beads and even glitter! I love that I had that experience and often refer to it when students ask me if they should make something that seems difficult. I say, try it! Trying new things is the way to find out if you like sewing that thing or not.

What inspired you to create the Patchwork and Quilting for Garment Sewing course?

I teach a wide range of sewing classes including garment sewing, patchwork, and quilting. I’ve always wanted to teach a class that combines all three topics, and I loved the idea of working with Jennifer and teaching this class at Workroom Social.

How does the course help students bring their unique creativity and personal style into their quilted garments?

In the course, I show students how to think about choosing a patchwork/quilt pattern and color combinations that can reflect their personal style. I love helping students understand more about color, and I especially love encouraging them to choose color combinations that feel good to them.

Quilted garments offer a great opportunity to play! Whether you love all the colors, want to mix and match prints, or maybe stick to an all neutral color palette, the choice is up to each student. I love how, at the end of the class, each student has created a completely unique garment!

Why do you think it’s particularly helpful to take a class to learn how to make patchwork and quilted garments?

Making a quilted garment requires lots of steps and lots of time, both of which can feel overwhelming. Our course breaks down the process into super helpful weekly lessons and sewing sessions, making the experience more manageable—and more fun. If you stick to our steps, you’ll have a patchwork and quilted jacket just in time for autumn.

In addition, our class offers community and accountability as we all create our garments together. It’s really motivating and encouraging to work on a project as a group. You have people to bounce ideas off of, ask for help, and celebrate with you along the way.

What’s special about Patchwork and Quilting for Garment Sewing?

I love the format of Workroom Social’s virtual sewing classes. Students get tons of support with both live classes and sewing sessions, and with the virtual classroom platform, there are so many opportunities to ask questions and get advice. Students are also actively encouraged to engage with each other as a group, which creates a unique experience in an online setting.

Plus, Jennifer and I bring years of experience in class planning and teaching to this course. We’re always thinking about the student’s experience and doing our best to make sure our instruction is clear, resources and information are easy to find, and that it’s easy to ask for help

What’s your biggest wish for students after completing the course?

I hope when the weather gets chilly, our students will feel so happy and comfortable wearing their self-made garment. I hope they’ll remember how much fun they had making it, and I want them to remember and feel proud that they showed up every week and completed this not-so-easy project.

Diana Rodgers’s journey from fashion designer to sewing educator is so inspiring, and her passion for teaching is evident in every class she leads. If you’re looking to expand your sewing skills and explore the art of creating unique quilted garments, there’s no better opportunity than our virtual sewing course, Patchwork and Quilting for Garment Sewing. Don’t miss the chance to learn from Diana’s extensive experience and supportive teaching style. Registration closes this Friday, May 31, 2024.

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published