Sips N Sews hosts local textile industry leaders and obsessionist who share their expertise and knowledge with all those interested in learning and growing their skills in sewing, patterning making and construction.
Learn more about our instructors.
Don, first became interested in patterns and learning to sew while studying costume design at the University of Texas in Austin in the late 1960s. These classes instilled a deep appreciation for well-made garments that fit the individual. As a result of this interest, in 1973 his first book, How to Make a Sewing Patterns was published. This book has been the basis of his pattern design curriculum taught at community college adult education programs as well as private workshops. Don has also had the opportunity to design costumes for a number of stage shows.
In 2006, he entered the online sewing educational community. One of the first questions he was asked was “How do you create a pattern for a bra?”. As a question that was frequently asked for decades, he soon found himself immersed in a new journey of research and development. That new path resulted in online classes that featured streaming videos.
In 2016, he completed a second edition of How to Make Sewing Patterns and pulled together his online instructions for creating custom-fit bras into a book How to make Custom-Fit Bras & Lingerie. You can learn more about his education techniques at www.deofsf.com
What’s old is new again, fiber artist Anna Magelssen loves to learn traditional methods and give them a modern spin. With a BFA from Academy of Art University in Fashion Design, experience in Architectural drafting and design in San Francisco, CA; as well as experience working in a high-end interior soft goods fabric workroom and a couture atelier, she is well rounded in research, hands-on design and manufacturing.
Her passions lie in Neo-Traditional design, attention to details, sustainable living, philanthropy, love, nature and art. At the end of her day, she likes to see that she embraced the wisdom of the ones who came before and passed on the beauty she found along the way.
Currently, she is enjoying traditional Japanese & American quilting techniques. Expanding on these traditional styles of hand and machine stitching and using them in new modern ways while embracing the tradition. Other passions include macramé, making cool pants, adding patches to things, bike riding through parks and the smells of lavender and lemongrass.
Other daily endeavors include developing her skills in natural perfuming and ecological beauty.
Marney taught herself how to sew at 13 and has never stopped! Early influences include picking up haute couture sewing techniques shared by a model from the houses of Dior, Valentino and Yves St. Laurent. She has created custom made dresses, suits, evening wear, lingerie and historical garments for over 25 years out of her home studio. One of her most memorable projects was an 18th-century ensemble of a corset, jacket and bustled skirt that was worn in one of her operatic performances (another passion!).
“My passion for sewing has grown from the always inspiring experience of turning a two-dimensional piece of fabric into a 3-dimensional work of art.” Teaching others about this ‘secret’ is inspiring and rewarding as her students cultivate the skills to create their own works of art!”
Marney is currently a student at Apparel Arts in Oakland, California.
Zoe is bringing to Sips N Sews 15+ years of sewing experience, starting from skills taught by her Great Grandmother’s sewing club. After mastering hand sewing, she graduated to a sewing machine and has never stopped learning.
When asked “What inspires you to teach sewing?”
Zoe’s response is “It’s a dying trade that was passed on to me from my great-grandma. Even in my family, I was the last generation/grandchild to learn the skill. I want to make sure that her teachings don’t end with me. Sewing is such a wonderful, fun thing to learn. I love being able to pass that joy & creativity on to new sewists.”
You can follow and enjoy Zoe’s amazing creations at: SummerSapphires.com
@SummerSapphires = Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Linked In, Pinterest, and her Etsy store
Lynda Maynard has enjoyed a long career that highlights a wide array of experience in varying contexts of working with fashion. She’s brought a passion for fashion to countless classrooms spanning over 15 years, serving a number of community colleges and leading workshops across the country. Her areas of expertise include couture sewing techniques, fitting, and pattern drafting. Coursework developed and taught includes Moulage (French Pattern Drafting), Pant Draft, Copying Ready-to-Wear, Lingerie, Working With Difficult Fabrics, and numerous other offerings. Academic professionals call on Lynda for continual development of college-level courses in Fashion Design. Her talent and expertise expand beyond the local community with multiple published works including two of her own book titles, De-Mystifying Fit followed by The Dressmaker’s Handbook of Couture Sewing Techniques. Additional publishing credits include her regular contributions to both Stitch magazine and Threads magazine and a collection of interactive online video courses commissioned by Craftsy. Through all of these mediums combined, her followers know that her technical innovations, product quality, and attention to detail are the core components of her signature style.
Michael Portuesi has taken self-taught to a level of mastery, starting from watching sewing programs on public television, internet research, and trial and error he has become an accomplished sewist. When a Brother sewing machine “magically appeared” for Christmas 2011, he took up sewing as a hobby and has been teaching himself ever since. His interests include cases, folios, home decorating, and men’s garment construction.
Michael is ready to help new students, by teaching the lessons he has learned from his own exploration in the world of sewing.
Joe the Quilter
Joe Cunningham began making quilts professionally in 1979, after a ten-year career as a musician in Michigan. His early mentors were steeped in the history and traditions of quilts, leading Cunningham to a life of study in quilt history and a love of traditional technique.
Over the years his quilts have evolved into a unique, personal style. His quilts are in the permanent collections of museums, as well as in numerous private collections. Cunningham’s 11 books on quilts include the 2010 book “Men and the Art of Quiltmaking,” (the first book on the subject), a museum catalogue for the Shelburne Museum’s exhibition, “Man-Made Quilts: Civil War to the Present,” and his essay for the de Young Museum show “Amish Abstractions: Quilts from the Collection of Faith and Stephen Brown.” His column for the national magazine The Quilt Life is called “Biased and Edgy.”
He has been seen on the Peabody Award-winning PBS series “Craft in America,” the HGTV series “Simply Quilts with Alex Anderson”, the PBS series “Sewing with Nancy” and on “The Quilt Show” with Alex Anderson and Ricky Tims.” He gives talks about quilts and teaches workshops nationwide.
At age 21, he started his first clothing line, self-named Gallofornia, since then his designs have appeared on TV, movies, the internet and of magazines.
Paul brought his talents to San Francisco in 1991, he perfected his skills at draping and patternmaking earning the title of Master patternmaker. Paul has been commissioned by companies worldwide, and locally, for theatres, performers, celebrities and for good measure a few riff-raff outfits.
Galen is a local textile designer working with strong roots in San Francisco’s theatrical costume community. Educated at the City College of San Francisco in Apparel Construction and Fashion Merchandising.
Galen enjoys draping, embroidery, and a variety of textile crafts. His latest works have included interior crafts, costumes, and accessories, much drawing inspiration from contemporary art, travel, and history.
Mike “Mac” McNamara
“Mac” grew up in New England as part of a professional & creative family. Influences were never far away from Liriodendron Tulipifera (Tulip Tree) to grandparents who were performers and artists.
Humor is a natural part of Mac’s personality. He developed blue-collar humor while working at my dad’s tire company. His slogan was, “Invite Us to Your Next Blowout!”.
Mac’s quilting journey began in 1976. He worked on the NAMES Project – an ongoing memorial of sewn panels for people who have died of AIDS. Other quilt-making influences come from friends and other textile artists, Rhoda Cohen, Sylvia Einstein, Nancy Crow, Paula Nadelstern, and Joe Cunningham.
Mac likes to re-invent traditional blocks, such as Double Wedding Ring, Pickle Dish, Drunkard’s Path, Broken Dishes, and give them a new feel. “I don’t care as much about color as I do value – I like the idea of the eye flickering as it goes across the plain of the quilt. A successful quilt is if someone says, “Hey, that looks like some kids made that.” Mac is a long-standing member of the Quilters’ Connection in Watertown, MA and Pajaro Valley Quilters’ Association of Santa Cruz, CA.